Us Weekly confirmed in August 2020 that the 39-year-old hairdresser was head over heels in love with Dale, 32, within the first two weeks of production of her season of The Bachelorette. As a result, Clare stopped filming season 16 to pursue a relationship with the former football player.
During the October 2020 premiere, fans saw Clare declare Dale was her future “husband” after he stepped out of the limo. A month later, their proposal aired and Tayshia Adams arrived at the Palm Springs resort to meet Clare’s remaining suitors and four new men. (During the December 2020 finale, Tayshia, 30, got engaged to one of Clare’s OG contestants, Zac Clark.)
“From the moment I stepped out of the limo, this was special,” Dale said before he got down on one knee. “I know without the shadow of a doubt that you would go to the end of the world for me and I’ve never had that. I’m so grateful for that. … All [my mother’s] ever wanted for me is someone who loves me unconditionally and who would be there for me no matter what. I know that I have that. And I love you.”
Clare happily accepted the estimated 4 to 5-carat radiant-cut Neil Lane diamond. “I love you too. … The best is yet to come,” she said. “Put that ring on my finger, I’ve waited a lot of years for this!”
Five months after the twosome got engaged (and two months after the proposal aired on ABC), a source confirmed to Us Weekly that Clare and Dale hit a rough patch and were trying to work through “serious issues” in their relationship. The athlete subsequently confirmed that they were over.
“I wanted [to] share with you all that Clare and I have decided to go our separate ways. We appreciate the love and support we’ve received from so many people, but this is the healthiest decision for both of us at this time,” Dale wrote on Tuesday, January 19, via Instagram. “We strongly believe in leading with love and always remaining true to oneself — something our families have taught and instilled in us throughout our lives. We only hope the best things for one another.”
While Clare has yet to comment on the split, Dale reiterated his point that their breakup was the “healthiest” choice for the pair while speaking to photographers on Tuesday.
“Obviously, it’s not the greatest situation,” he said. “But, you know, Clare and I have a lot of love for each other … Honestly, we’ve just got a lot going on in our lives right now.”
Scroll through for the signs that Clare and Dale were over: