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Rachael Kirkconnell speaks out after The Bachelor finale, doubles down on message to fans

Rachael Kirkconnell and Matt James pose on the set of The Bachelor.
Rachael Kirkconnell and Matt James snuggle during The Bachelor season finale. They would break up after photos surfaced where Rachael was dressed in antebellum clothing amidst claims of racist behavior. Pic credit: ABC/Craig Sjodin

Rachael Kirkconnell spoke out after The Bachelor season finale. She doubled down in a message to fans where she assured them she was doing the work necessary to become more educated on race relations.

She posted her message after the explosive recap of the ABC reality dating series, The Bachelor: After the Final Rose, where she faced Matt James’ stony silence.

At the close of The Bachelor’s season finale, Matt and Rachael did not become engaged. Instead, he declared he wanted to grow in their relationship and love for one another.

The finale was taped in November 2020. By February 2021, old images of Rachael had surfaced on Reddit of the then-college student as a participant of a fraternity party where she dressed in antebellum clothing.

Her actions gave Matt reason to reflect on their relationship. He would admit that they were no longer together to ATFR guest-host Emmanuel Acho and called on Rachael to continue to do the work she needed to grow as a person and learn from her actions.

After the episode aired, Rachael took to Instagram to post a lengthy message where she opened her heart on several critical topics that have plagued her life over the past two months.

Rachael’s admitted life had thrown her a new path

The reality television personality spoke about the topics that weighed most heavily on her heart in the caption of a ten image slideshow.

Eight photos showed Rachael with women who have lifted her and inspired her. The final two were photographs taken with Matt on the set of the ABC dating series.

She wrote that life could be “unpredictable and unexplainable” and admitted that things might not always go the way one hoped for. She claimed she believed that while there was a reason for everything and one cannot always control certain situations, the way they deal with them is most important.

Rachael felt disappointed that the contestants of the series — and their stories — were overshadowed by the issues that plagued this season. She called her fellow contestants some of the “strongest, most brilliant, most extraordinary women” and promised to stand by and support each one of them.

Rachael called Matt ‘the love of my life’

Rachael Kirkconnell and Matt James on the set of The Bachelor.
Rachael Kirkconnell and Matt James at the final rose ceremony of The Bachelor. She called him “the love of my life” in an Instagram post. Pic credit: ABC/Craig Sjodin

The 24-year-old then addressed her feelings for Matt, the man she fell for almost immediately at the start of the season.

“While I never expected this outcome, I respect his decision completely. Of course, I wish circumstances were different, but i still feel blessed for the time we did have together and the memories we made. I got to fall in love, and I truly believe he was the love of my life. he will always hold a piece of my heart. I’ll always be hopeful and believe what’s meant to be will be,” she said of her hopes for the future.

In the end, Rachael was hopeful that her prior mistakes would spark important conversations and understanding.

The Bachelor is currently on hiatus.

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