‘The Bachelor’ Joey Graziadei ‘Went Dark’ After Seeing Kelsey’s Post-Fantasy Suites Note

After receiving an ominous note from one of his three remaining women on “The Bachelor,” Joey Graziadei said he went “dark” and immediately thought of the worst-case scenario.

Following three fantasy suite dates with Kelsey Anderson, Daisy Kent and Rachel Nance, Graziadei arrived to a note at his door from Anderson, which read, “We need to talk.”

“I went dark very quickly — I thought that she was leaving, I thought something went wrong,” Graziadei told TheWrap. “I think any guy that ever gets a text or anything from a girl that says, ‘We need to talk,’ you assume the worst.”

While Graziadei noted that his assumption was “understandable,” he also admitted he wished he was able to be a “little bit more understanding in that time,” saying that his reaction was “raw and real emotion.”

Despite the note prompting a moment of concern for Graziadei, Anderson cleared up any confusion when she told the leading man she missed spending time with him and wanted to be honest about her emotions.

“I wish she used some different words — I wish it didn’t have to be in a note in that way,” Graziadei said, adding that Anderson’s attempt at honesty was “sweet” at its core. “For her to want to get more time and talk to me, I think people can see now that it didn’t really change where we were at.”

Below, Graziadei unpacks his decision to send Nance home, revisits his relationship with fan-favorite Maria Georgas and looks ahead towards next week’s finale.

TheWrap: During the Tell All, we also saw that you chose to send Rachel home after fantasy suites. Why did you decide your connection wasn’t there yet?

Joey Graziadei: I go back to the conversation we had on the bench when I said goodbye — we both agreed we had so much love for each other, but I was at the point where there were people sharing things with me, and it was time for me to be able to see if I could express if I was falling in love with them. When Rachel said that, I realized that I wasn’t ready to express that — I didn’t feel like I was there. As always, the most honest and real thing I could do was take time to think about it, but once I came to the conclusion that I knew that we weren’t at the same point, I had to say goodbye.

You saw Rachel for the first time tonight. What message did you want to share with her?

It’s always great seeing Rachel again, we have so much appreciation and respect for one another. It was just nice to be able to have even more closure — to not have that conversation be in a moment where we had so many emotions, because when that happens suddenly, it’s so tough to be sitting on that bench and be able to share how you’re truthfully feeling. I am happy that I got to say what I did, and I’m really happy that she got to see the moment after where I was talking to the camera and I said, “I know she’s gonna be OK, but I want her to know how much I want her to be OK.” All of that was very special.

You also said goodbye to Maria before fantasy suites. What was it like to see her again and do you have any regrets about sending her home before fantasy suites?

We had a great connection — we had so much fun. There’s no point of me now of having regrets because I knew I did the best that I could at that time, and I led with my gut. It’s not like I didn’t believe that Maria had feelings for me — I knew that she was truthfully falling in love with me and I have so much appreciation that she decided to tell me that — but I think a lot of people also saw that she struggled with the whole entire idea of the show with other women being there and letting go and trusting that if you really want this to work, you have to trust the connection, and not all the other things that are going on around you.

I got to that point where I knew the three other women were accepting — they knew it was hard, but they were willing to keep pushing forward, and I just didn’t know if Maria was going to be able to do that going into the next week. It’s nothing to do with how much I care and have respect for her, it just was making the choice I thought that was the best to move forward with.

During the Tell All, Maria said she wished that she had done things a little bit differently. Do you think any of that would have impacted what happened between you two?

It’s possible. It’s always hard to know. These women sometimes are a lot harder on themselves than they need to be. This is such a tough experience — there’s so many things that come from this that no one should have to deal with or go through and you see different sides of yourself. I think it’s more important for people to be given grace and realize that anyone in this position is not going to do it perfectly. They all can be a lot more kind to themselves.

That day, as everyone can see, was so hard for me. What’s really important is to know that those emotions are real, and there’s a lot to uncover in that finale.

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