As always, Bachelor Nation delivered the drama in 2022. While the final rose led to several splits — and cheating scandals — other former Bachelor and Bachelorettes found their happily ever after this year.
2022 kicked off with Clayton Echard’s season of The Bachelor, which resulted in the first lead to “fall in love” with three contestants — Gabby Windey, Rachel Recchia and Susie Evans. Susie subsequently opted to remove herself from the series when she learned Clayton slept with Gabby and Rachel in the fantasy suites, leading to the “rose ceremony from hell” a.k.a. when the former football player informed the two finalists about what happened.
Clayton made things worse when he convinced Gabby and Rachel to stay, only to admit that he was still thinking about Susie. It worked out for him — for a bit — when the wedding videographer decided to give him another shot.
“I think we learned a lot from our discussions after the show more than anything. We didn’t hold back. We rehashed that entire night on several occasions and we both could have done better that night,” Susie, who told Clayton on the show that his having sex with another woman was a dealbreaker, said on Us Weekly’s “Here for the Right Reasons” podcast in March. “I could have communicated it better. [Clayton] could have communicated better, [he could have been] more understanding of my perspective. We both learned so much. And watching it back, it was sad, and it was tough because I could see on Clayton’s face when I brought up that topic … you could see the devastation in his face and that realization of, like, coming back down or coming back over to the real world where I was living. It just broke my heart because I knew it was coming. So it was tough to watch.”
The twosome went on to date for several months, calling it quits in September after moving in together. Gabby and Rachel, meanwhile, were named the co-Bachelorettes for season 19. The decision marked the first time two people were both the lead for the entire season.
While the season resulted in two proposals — Gabby got engaged to Erich Schwer and Rachel accepted a Neil Lane diamond from Tino Franco — the ladies were single before the end of the year. Gabby and Erich’s breakup has been somewhat amicable while Rachel revealed Tino kissed another woman when the show was airing.
“There is no excuse for what you did. You broke my heart,” Rachel said during their tense After the Final Rose reunion, which aired in September, denying that they were ever “on a break” from their engagement.
Tino wasn’t the only one accused of cheating this year. Many fans were surprised when Victoria Fuller opted to return to the franchise for season 8 of Bachelor in Paradise — and even more shocked when she and Johnny DePhillipo got engaged. Their relationship quickly took a turn when she was seen out with alum Greg Grippo in Italy in October before the proposal aired. While Johnny has claimed that she was unfaithful, Victoria has maintained that she and Greg got together after she ended things with her ex-fiancé.
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