Bachelor in Paradise

Bachelor In Paradise's Laurina Fleure shock exit: "My brother took his own life a month before I went on the show"

Leaving on her own accord, Laurina bravely shares her heart-wrenching story.

By Chloe Lal
Fans have known that Bachelor in Paradise would have some explosive twists.
In a huge moment, Laurina Fleure made a shock exit from the Channel Ten dating show.
Although her departure wasn't actually shown on TV tonight, Ten confirmed her shock exit in a Tweet: "It's all become too much for Laurina, and she's decided to leave Paradise. We wish you all the best."
She'd said goodbye to Blake Colman and producers hoped a date card would help her move on but the stunning 34-year-old had a breakdown resulting in her walking away from the opportunity to find love in Fiji.
Now, in an exclusive interview with Now To Love, Laurina Fleure reveals that her turbulent journey was due to the fact that her older brother Michael Shaun Fitzgerald had tragically taken his own life a month prior to filming.
Laurina says she didn't want to share her struggles on the show.

Laurina talk to us about your decision to walk out?
I had a moment during the day where I felt like my work here was done. I'd seen all the new heads and was promised I'd like one of the new boys but I didn't.
I wasn't into anyone else. I thought that was enough for me - anymore and I'd be dragging it out.
And then I got offered the date card and I had that real unwarranted emotional reaction to it and I knew this wasn't healthy for me.
My brother had taken his life within a month of going on the show. And I hadn't realised that I hadn't properly grieved.
I wasn't able to open up on the show because I had all this unresolved pain bubbling under the surface.
Laurina reflects on her time in Paradise.
When the date got sprung on me, I didn't have time to mentally or emotionally prepare myself for what my happy story would be.
The thought of being on a date and not being able to truly say what I was thinking or feeling. I didn't want to talk about my brother on any of my dates.
I got really panicky an it clicked that my emotional reaction was strange. It made me realise that I had to listen to what my body was saying.
I had to go home. There was no rose ceremony. It wasn't a healthy environment for me – I needed to go home and grieve.
How are you and your family coping now?
Look we're doing well. I'm staying close to my mum. That helps.

Your fans always adore how much you share of yourself – whether it's about looking for love, opening up about body image, to speaking of your brother. How scary is it for you to open yourself up to the public like that?
To be honest it has been so scary. A part of me didn't want to do it.
I'd also come out of two hideous break-ups – not in line with what you want to happen to you.
It's so hard not to talk about it. I know some believe it's not cool to air dirty laundry, but you just want to share your pain.
Laurina says Michael was a great friend during the show.
Knowing what we do now, it makes complete sense that you'd want to be left along during filming. The entire nation applauded your gumption when you called Daniel out. Was the creepy comment that he said to you really :"Suck my Canadian bacon?"
No he didn't but he may as well have!
He whispered under his breath as the cameras moved away from our chat. He said how incredible my a--e looked while I was sun-baking earlier. His comments were along the lines of how he watched my undies creep up my a--e.
He said he could talk like that because he's a personal trainer and he knows an incredible a-- when he sees one. It was disgusting and insulting.
Your actions have been applauded and you've been hailed the nation's new feminist hero, how does that feel?
I'm happy I did it. I feel like it gave Keira an opportunity to get the douchebag out of her face and stop distracting her.
She could then focus on someone where she can genuinely find love – which is with Jarrod.
Daniel lasted one day.
Your connection with Blake seemed surface level and he didn't always come across as the smartest cookie, was that a challenge?
He really liked me a lot and he was paralysed around me.
I had told him I was healing from something and I needed time out. And he really did want to give me time but he wanted me to know that he was still into me.
He'd come around and talk to me but he'd touch and kiss me and try to massage me.
But we weren't verbally connecting. That made me withdraw.
I would have been happy to spend more time with him if we did connect but we just couldn't. And he always made it physical.
Given the space I was in with my brother's passing – I didn't want to open up. I didn't want to be touched.
It made me anxious to the point where I would hide out in my room and just have "me time".
It got to the point where production said "you don't look happy" and I said that "this guy is smothering me."
I knew how much he liked me, because the other boys were like he likes you, don't hurt him!
"I think he's beautiful and I'm sad I couldn't be the one!"
You mentioned you felt bullied and pressured on the show – can you tell us more about that?
They'd see me come out of my room and they'd encourage him to come to me. They were concerned because they saw my body language.
I didn't know how to say leave me alone!
How awkward was it when Blake mispronounced your name at the rose ceremony?
I was already off him at that point. I was waiting for whoever else would come through the door.
When he got my name wrong, I thought it was funny. We laughed. The next day he felt so bad and I said, "Babe don't worry about it! It was so rude it was hot!" I made a joke of it.
What are your thoughts on him now?
There are no hard feelings! He's pretty sweet – other than getting my name wrong which was an accident – I know that he liked me. He told everyone that I was the perfect woman, a goddess.
I think he's beautiful and I'm sad I couldn't be the one!
Were there any other important moments that didn't make it to air?
There were heaps!
Jake and I had a flirt fest sharing a burger. I got stung on the foot by a wasp and Jarrod sucked the venom out! It was pretty cute.I feel like you and Michael Turnbull could have had something – no spark there?
No, well I got side-tracked by Blake from the very start.
And he told all the boys to stay away from me. By the time I came out of that, Michael and I hit the friend-zone.
I've got a lot of time of Michael, I think he's absolutely gorgeous and a beautiful human being.
Something down the track?
Maybe something [Laughs].
I wasn't really open the way you need to be on a show like this – considering the circumstances.

Was there a Bachelor that you'd hope you'd meet?
Not really, I was hoping for new boys!
One of the promos was about your long list of qualities that you're looking for in a man (which I love) - do you stand by that?
Absolutely! You need to put out what you want. It's not an unreasonable request.
Are you still single or have your met someone special?
I'm in a relationship! I've met a man who is everything on my list and more.
OMG! Amazing! Would we know him?
No.
There's been talk that there's a lot of sexual activity on the island – any truth to that?
Not while I was on the show.
I think the American one is so much more sexual that some of us felt guilty that our version was more tame.
What did you prefer Bachelor or Bachelor in Paradise?
Bachelor in Paradise!
You know by now that we have a 2018 Bachelor in Honey Badger – any thoughts on him?
Not for me – I don't do blondes.
But it's good they have someone with personality.
Any tips for the girls going on Bachelor and BIP?
I have some notes for production [Laughs].
If you, or someone you know, is feeling down and needs to talk to someone, call Lifeline on 13 11 14. If a life is in danger, call 000.