EXCLUSIVE: Eliminated Beauty and the Geek’s Mitchell reveals how Ashleigh helped him find his confidence

“Love was a weird thing for me."

By Faye Couros
Even though Beauty and the Geek's Mitchell Berryman and Ashleigh Thomason were eliminated, they have had a successful run as the only couple to stay together through the show.
Talking with TV Week, the couple discuss how they helped each other become better people through their time on reality TV.
Although they thought they had a good shot of making it to the end, the duo is still in good spirits.
The dynamic duo celebrating a win. Instagram
"Being the only original couple to have done every single challenge together to that point, we wanted to be that couple at the end," muses Ashleigh.
Mitchell chimes in, "I wanted us to be that couple at the end too. I suppose it was a little bit sad to leave the group, but I knew eventually we were going to find a way to communicate."
The theme of communication tethered Mitchell and Ashleigh together on the show, as it was a big point of discussion that carried them through their journey.
Ashleigh reveals how incredible it has been to watch Mitchell transform from their first awkward meeting to now.
"I remember the first day meeting Mitchell, and he couldn't even look me in the eye, and very quickly we established things we could work on, and Mitch was so open to working on things and improving himself," says Ashleigh.
As if these endearing friends weren't cute enough, Mitchell responded to Ashleigh's remarks by revealing the adorable reason why he couldn't look her in the eyes.
"I knew eventually we were going to find a way to communicate." Instagram
"Yeah, because I had a really big problem with communication at the very beginning, back on the very first time I saw you, I was struggling to look at you in the eye because you were too beautiful," expresses Mitchell.
"Aw, you're so sweet," replies Ashleigh.
During an emotional moment between the couple on the show, Mitchell bravely told Ashleigh he loves her.
Expressing your love for another is a bold decision, and that sentiment was not lost on the Geek.
However, he felt it was a crucial part of his growth and healing.
"It could of gone any way possible. I had no idea what was going to happen when I was going to say I love you, but I felt it within myself that I had to," says Mitchell.
"I had to say something. I had to express how I felt about the whole experience and how I felt with Ashleigh. I had absolutely no regrets in what I said, and I absolutely love that Ashleigh still wanted to be with me in some way."
Saying those three words was a big milestone for the 28-year-old, who didn't have time to think about love growing up because of the challenges he was facing at the time.
"Love was a weird thing for me because I grew up finding it hard to get along with people, so when I came back to Australia and went into secondary school, love wasn't on my mind," Mitchell recounts.
"It was about survival and getting friends, and love was the furthest thing, so part of that experience was me trying to reconcile with what I wasn't able to do."
The importance of that moment shared between them wasn't lost on Ashleigh, who understood its magnitude.
"It was about survival and getting friends, and love was the furthest thing." Instagram
"I was so proud of Mitchell being vulnerable in that moment and sharing that with me because day one Mitchell would have never done that, and I am so proud of how far he came.
"That made me feel very special that I was that person he felt comfortable saying that to," says the 31-year-old.
Since leaving the show, they are still in regular contact and working on improving Mitchell's communication skills as they navigate their long-distance friendship.
"We chat from time to time; we do a little bit of video chat. It's ever-growing, I have to say because we are always coming up with little things to approve upon to keep our friendship growing," says Mitchell.

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