Matt James may have given Rachael Kirkconnell his final rose during Monday night’s finale of The Bachelor, but unfortunately, the couple broke up shortly thereafter over photos of Kirkconnell attending an antebellum plantation-themed event were shared online (via People).
After James told host Emmanuel Acho during the After the Final Rose special that he and Kirkconnell had parted ways, despite her public apology, and noted that he wanted to see her put in the work when it came to being antiracist, he appeared on Good Morning America, where host Michael Strahan questioned him about his thoughts on a potential future reconciliation with Kirkconnell.
“I think there’s a lot of work that needs to be done before I can think about being in a relationship with anybody,” James admitted, confirming that he is not only single currently, but planning to remain that way for the foreseeable future.
According to James, he wants to take time out for himself as a single man before opening his mind up to potentially making amends with Kirkconnell, or considering a romance with someone new.
Matt James needs 'time' to process his Bachelor journey
Continuing on to Strahan, James said he needs “time to process everything that’s going on.” “I want to respect Rachael and what she’s gotta do, as well,” he explained, giving a nod to the work Kirkconnell needs to put in to educate herself on why the controversial photos were so offensive to James and others around the globe.
According to James, he believes Kirkconnell is “a good person” and looks forward to seeing her gain understanding about what it means for him to be a Black man in America, and what it would mean for their potential children to be faced with those photos one day. “Everything she outlined in her apology and statement, I’m looking forward to seeing her do. I know she’s capable of it,” James told Strahan.
During the After the Finale Rose special, Kirkconnell offered an apology to James, who questioned their relationship completely upon learning of the photos. Still, James made it clear that he was not ready to get back into a relationship with her. “I knew that I had to take a step back for you to put in that work that you outlined that you needed to do and that’s something that you’ve got to do on your own and that’s why we can’t be in a relationship,” he told her.
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