After their recent meetup in New York City, Bachelor fans thought that perhaps Matt James and Rachael Kirkconnell had made amends. Alas, it seems the opposite might be true. “Matt and Rachael are no longer speaking and Rachael is really upset about the situation that happened,” an insider told E! News. “She is devastated and feels totally played by Matt. Rachael really trusted that they could have a future together and is heartbroken.”
This new update comes just days after a woman named Grace told Reality Steve that she was talking to the former Bachelor amid Kirkconnell’s visit to New York. According to Us Weekly’s source, Rachael felt “very hurt” and “manipulated” when she found out about Grace because she and James had reportedly been “talking about a future together.” The insider added that Grace—who knew James prior to his time on The Bachelor—and Rachael “dropped him” upon learning that he was talking to both of them at once.
“Rachael is very emotional right now because she was very hopeful that things were going to work out. She’s still trying to process this,” Us Weekly’s insider said, adding that it “doesn’t seem like they will be getting back together.” Per E! News’ source, the 24-year-old graphic designer “has expressed how upset she is” to Matt over the entire situation, but now she “thinks it’s best they no longer speak.” Bustle has reached out to Kirkconnell for comment and will update this post if we hear back.
Rachael’s decision to no longer talk to Matt is a far cry from her recent comments about their relationship, which came to an end amid the Georgia native’s recent racism scandal. After photographs surfaced online of Kirkconnell attending an antebellum plantation-themed party and wearing culturally appropriative costumes, she apologized for her past racist behavior on Instagram and during the season’s After the Final Rose special. Then, she took to Instagram to reflect on the experience, remaining hopeful that she and James would one day reconcile.
“While I never expected this outcome, I respect his decision completely,” Kirkconnell captioned her post from March 15, referring to James’ decision to call off the relationship. “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.” The former contestant added that James will “always hold a piece of [her] heart” and that she will “always be hopeful and believe what’s meant to be will be.”
However, it seems that Matt may have never considered getting back together at all. After their NYC meetup, a source told E! News that they “are completely just friends” and that James “has no intentions of dating her in the future.” For what it’s worth, it didn’t seem like the former lead was down to make amends during ATFR, either. “The most disappointing thing was having to explain to you why what I saw was problematic and why I was so upset,” James told Kirkconnell after the finale. “When I’m dating someone, [I’m] on track to get married. And so when I questioned our relationship, it was in the context of you not fully understanding my Blackness and not understanding what it means to be a Black man in America.”