Fans were devastated when The Bachelorette alums Kaitlyn Bristowe and Shawn Booth announced their breakup last week. The cameras stopped rolling when their season ended in 2015 and fans have filled in some gaps via social media, but they still want more insight. The show's host Chris Harrison shared his thoughts on Kaitlyn and Shawn's split during a new interview with Mario Lopez for Extra.
Of course, it makes sense to ask Harrison about the latest Bachelor Nation news, since he hosts every show in the U.S. franchise. But the Kaitlyn and Shawn breakup news is also a lot more personal for him, because of his bond with the former Bachelorette star.
The host shared with Extra, "I mean, I’m in very close contact with Kaitlyn, she’s a very good friend of mine. I usually stay in touch with those who are the Bachelor [and] Bachelorette." As if being the lead on a Bachelor show isn't a cool enough experience, the privilege to count Harrison as a close friend is like the ultimate perk.
He admitted of Kaitlyn and Shawn,
"I knew that they were struggling privately, and I knew they were really trying to work it out. So, I was kind of like a counselor off-air, talking to her and trying to help them, because they were really fighting for it, really trying to make it work."
Harrison's sentiment that the former couple was "really fighting for it, really trying to make it work" was made clear when Kaitlyn and Shawn released a joint statement announcing their breakup to People on Nov. 2. Among other things, they declared, "This difficult decision comes after thoughtful, respectful consideration." It's not as if they just threw in the towel out of nowhere. They were together for three years.
Elsewhere in the statement, Kaitlyn and Shawn admitted,
"We have both evolved as people, which is taking us in different directions, but with the hope that we will continue to support each other in new ways."
These "different directions" were noticed by the former couple's social media followers in recent months. They're both very busy people, but they just weren't posting with or about each other as much as in the past. Sure, social media does not tell a whole story, but it's still interesting to observe.
Recently Shawn and Kaitlyn went to weddings without each other. Some people can be stingy when it comes to the plus-ones, but it'd be pretty surprising if someone who has been engaged for three years didn't have the option to bring a date to a wedding. Kaitlyn went to not one, but two different weddings on Oct. 14, and Shawn was not pictured. That same night, Shawn posted security camera footage of their dog.
On Oct. 27, Shawn went to Joshua Albers' wedding. He was a contestant on Kaitlyn's Bachelorette season, so obviously he knows her. Instead of attending the wedding, Kaitlyn shared a selfie and several Instagram Stories of herself chilling at home in Nashville that same night.
Again, they're both busy people, so it's possible they just had different availabilities for these special occasions, but looking back, the hints of a split might've been there all along.
During the Aug. 16 episode of her Off the Vine podcast, Kaitlyn responded to the social media-induced split rumors. She explained,
"You know that times aren't always going to be smooth sailing. You know that times aren't always going to be tough. You just have to kind of get through those hurdles and enjoy the good times, but I mean do you really want to be there for anyone's hard times on social media? Do you follow myself and Shawn to see our hard times? No, absolutely not. You want to see us happy. So we don't want to overshare, but Shawn and I are 110 percent committed to each other. And yes, we are still together."
Clearly they tried their hardest to make things work in their relationship. Thankfully, they have the love of Bachelorette fans and a supportive friend in Harrison to make it through this very public split.