It may have been more than three months since filming wrapped on The Bachelor Australia, but that doesn't mean runner-up Abbie Chatfield was ready to face Matt Agnew and Chelsie McLeod today. Especially not after re-living her heartbreak watching Thursday night's season finale.
Unfortunately, the trio did all cross paths and the cruel encounter was a lot for Abbie to handle.
Earlier today, Sydney radio station Nova brought in Abbie to do an interview with host Smallzy. Meanwhile, Chelsie and Matt were wrapping up their chat with Fitzy and Wippa across the hall.
"I saw Matt this morning, they were in an interview behind me and I broke down in the hallway," Abbie tells TV WEEK. "It's not like the feelings for Matt are… it's just still open ended and I have no closure. But it will get easier from today, I think."
The 24-year-old reveals she'd love to meet up with Matt at some stage, because they haven't spoken since the split. However, she has been in contact with Chelsie as the season aired.
"I have Chelsie's support… but I don't talk to Matt, I have no idea what Matt thinks of me," she says.
"It's been hard to watch back, how in love with him I was. It sucks to know that's it. I had like a four minute conversation with him and then it was done."
Abbie says she'd love to catch up with Matt to talk about their split.
"I'd love to have, like, a coffee with Matt, but I don't think that's on the cards. The thing is, in a normal relationship, you'd go catch up and have a coffee and a chat [after breaking up]. But it's tough, we can't do that."
When TV WEEK caught up with Matt after the episode aired, he revealed he wasn't going to reach out to Abbie out of respect for Chelsie.
"I think for the relationship I have with Chels, it's not my place to reach out to ex-partners, ex-relationships," he says.
However, both Matt and Chelsie have responded to the backlash Abbie is facing from trolls on social media.
"She's not deserving of any of the nastiness she's coping on social media," Matt says. "People need to keep in mind that you're not swinging these insults and comments at a character; you're swinging at a human being. Remember that it lands and it hurts."
Abbie herself says she is "resilient" and has been coping "okay" with the nasty comments. However, she is surprised that people are taking such fierce aim over her sexuality and confidence.
"I guess it upsets me in that Australian society is so offended by someone passionately kissing their boyfriend, meanwhile Matt is getting no backlash… and he shouldn't, but neither of us should."
She points out that it's unfair for viewers to single her out as trying to "manipulate" Matt with her sexuality, when he's also been having passionate moments with other contestants.
"He's kissing Chelsie in a pool, he's kissing me on the beach, and that's fine, but to point out me as the one that's trying to 'manipulate him' with his sexuality… It's disheartening seeing society be so blatantly misogynistic and shame someone for being sex positive. I was just open and honest about it."
Abbie also faced backlash over her seemingly cold exit from the series, where she told producers "maybe I don't love him?" after Matt revealed his heart belongs to Chelsie.
Following on from a lengthy Instagram post that addressed the split overnight, Abbie tells TV WEEK she was "numb" when Matt broke things off.
"I didn't even know how to respond because for three months we were filming, and your life is revolving around this guy, and all I could do essentially was focus on Matt. And then it was all over and I felt like everything was crashing down."
She also admits there are still feelings she hasn't dealt with, because "it's hard to get over a relationship that you're pretending to be in for three months."
Currently single and finally ready to move on now the series is over, Abbie says she "needs a little bit of time to move on from this" because "it still feels quite raw after watching it last night."
When asked about rumours she'll be starring as the next Bachelorette, Abbie reveals she could be interested if the timing was right.
"I mean yeah, I think the process really works and that Matt and Chelsie are really happy," she says. "And it would be good to be on the other side [Laughs]. So, yeah, I'd be open to being the Bachelorette but it would depend on if I was dating at that time, and where I was it."
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