A Ring with Hesitation on THE BACHELORETTE Season 17 Finale Recap

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A Ring with Hesitation on THE BACHELORETTE Season 17 Finale Recap

Pictured: KATIE THURSTON. Photo by: ABC/Craig Sjodin

“The I love you that comes with a ring is different from an I love you without a ring.” – Blake Moynes.


It was a bumpy rode to the ending of Katie Thurston’s season of “The Bachelorette” which started with the day after Greg Grippo self eliminated after Katie didn’t reciprocate her feelings for him.  After considering leaving the show, Katie picked herself up and threw herself back into it by going out with Blake.  During that date, Katie decided that he was the one.  Next, Blake had to pass the test with her mom and Aunt Lindsay.

Katie fell head over heels for Blake.  Only, Justin was still there!  At the top of their last date, Katie broke it off with Justin, and then waited from afar to see if Blake would propose.

The engagement process for Blake was one of the most stressful, intense, nerve-wrecking that we’ve seen yet.  Truly not knowing if he was going to propose to Katie until the very last seconds of the final rose.

“After the Final Rose” had Katie answering some really important questions from Justin.  One being if he was there just by default.  And, Katie opening up a can of whoop-ass onto Greg for treating her that way he did during their odd breakup.  While this was happening, Greg kept perfect composure.



Greg left last week.  Katie said, “Greg is somebody I thought wouldn’t leave like this.  I just didn’t see this ending like this.”  Katie contemplated leaving the show after Greg left.  He was her “number one.”

After the montage of footage from last week’s episode with Greg’s exit, the show went to a pre-taped “After the Final Rose” filmed in front of a studio audience.”  “I felt defeated,” Katie said when experiencing Greg leaving right after Michael’s exit.  Katie said “I kept replaying it in my head, ‘what did I do that was so massive.”  She said she was literally on her knees begging him to stay. “I was caught off guard. Who are you?  Do I even know Greg?”  She was ready to leave, telling Kaitlyn to book her flight home.

Katie said “I didn’t know how I was going to handle whatever that next step would be.” She said she didn’t know what she was going to say to Greg during this “After the Final Rose” episode.  Tayshia responded, “that’s going to be a difficult conversation.”


Katie said “I feel hurt, sad, confused.  I’ve gone through a lot,” and “it’s hard to want to continue here.”  Katie said she still wanted to have that love story at the end and wants to have someone who wants to go through this with her until the very end.  The only men left were Justin and Blake.  She didn’t know how to move forward while “struggling and heart-broken.”

Back at the house:  Blake and Justin were trying to figure out what’s going on.  There was supposed to be a Rose Ceremony that night.  Then, in walked hosts Kaitlyn and Tayshia.  They told them that “Greg has left” and “she’s emotionally devastated.  She’s struggling.”


On the up side, Blake and Justin would both get to spend alone time with Katie.  Just wondered if Katie will now hold-back to keep from getting hurt and will she have doubts?  Before the Fantasy Suites Katie stated that she has to just follow her heart.  The first overnight date was with Blake  “If I don’t see a future with him, this could really be the last time we spend with each other,” stated Katie.

They stated off the date with a paintball fight.  Blake said he hoped that Katie was in a space “where she’s not looking back, just looking forward.”  As they sat in the hot tube together, they reminisced over their first date.  Then Blake asked about what happened with Michael and Greg leaving.  Katie told Blake the main points of each of their departures.  She told Blake that there was a part of her that wanted to quit.

Katie told Blake that with Justin still there as well, “I want to continue to go through with this.  This is the hardest thing I’ve ever done” and there’s been a shift this past week.  Blake said he realized that Greg meant something to her.  But, it was the first time that he was completely off on where Katie’s head is at.  Blake said in his confessional,  “I love Katie.  I love her a lot.”  But, he had doubts that if Katie is still “hung up on Greg” then he doesn’t want to propose.



Blake was nervous that Katie may not reciprocate his feelings.   The more he thought about Katie saying she considered leaving after Greg left, makes him wonder where her head is at.  Blake told Katie that he would never tell her that he’s falling in love with her, then get up and leave.  Blake said he doesn’t share the words “I love you” with many people – his mom, his dad.  Blake said he knew that the hometown date would be pivotal.  He said that day and that night, he felt a lot of love from Katie.  Including the way that they look at each other.

Blake said what solidified things for him was when she took off her heels to play hockey and she scored a point, and yelled, “go America!”  He said he realized then that he loves Katie.  Blake told her, “I love you and I’m really f@#* excited about life with you.”  Katie said “it’s a big deal.  It’s a huge word.”  Then Katie replied, “I f@#%ng love you so much.  I’m glad you’re here.” Next,  Katie pulled out the Fantasy Suite card with the key.  Of course they both agreed to share a Fantasy Suite together.

Katie said she hasn’t felt that happy with someone in a long time and with Blake, “he completes me.”  Blake said in his confessional video, “Katie is everything that I’ve ever wanted” and feels like he’s walking out with his fiance.

The next day, while sitting down talking to Kaitlyn about her overnight date with Blake, Katie told Kaitlyn that she was “plenty satisfied, multiple times.”  Katie told her that she realized that Blake was the one during that date.  “It was the best day of my life.”  Kaitlyn called it incredible and amazing. She told Katie that all that happened with Greg for clarity.  Katie said “the fact that I feel that for Blake, my heart officially belongs to Blake.  Kaitlyn reminded her that “Justin is still here.”


Justin said he’s happy that “things went down that way” because Katie’s focus is narrowed.  He said he’s going to take full advantage of the alone time with Katie.  In his confessional video, Justin said he loves Katie and hopes to get to the point where they’re falling in love with each other.

Katie met-up with Justin in the woods.  After giving him a hug, she asked him if they could talk.  She told Justin about Greg’s exit and how she considered quitting.  Katie told him she understands how hard it was for him to tell her that he’s in love with her.  She explained that she already told Blake that she’s in love with him.  “That is something that I can only say to one person.”  Katie said, “knowing that I’m in love with him,” it wouldn’t make sense to go on this date, and meet my family.

Justin recalled their hometown date where Katie seemed a little off.  He told her that he wanted to be 100% and it’s tough.  He said this is not a fun place to be.  Katie told Justin, “when you open up, you offer so much.”  She said his painting has really pushed her forward every day.  Justin was emotional and said “I think the word of you” and said everything he said to her is true.  Justin added that he hopes Blake doesn’t take her for granted.  Katie responded “that means more to me than you can ever know.”  Katie said it was really hard, especially with Justin where he did nothing wrong.  “Telling him goodbye today, caused some pain.”

Justin reacted that it’s crazy because he and Katie spent a month together…”and that’s it.”


Pictured (l-r): KAITLYN BRISTOWE, TAYSHIA ADAMS, JUSTIN. Photo by: ABC/Eric McCandless

Justin was in the hot seat.  Kaitlyn asked how Justin was feeling.  Justin responded that “it hurts just as much as it did then.”  Justin said he really put himself out there to be vulnerable.  Justin said “I wasn’t going to leave  anything on the table,” and things turned out the way they did.  He told her that he trusted her judgement and decision making.  “It doesn’t make it easier” that it ended-up not being him.

Tayshia asked Justin if he wondered if Greg and Michael had stayed if he would be there.  He said he did ask himself if he was just there by default.  Tayshia asked if he feels if Katie gave him a far shot? Justin responded, “no.”  Then Katie was called out to talk to Justin.

Justin started the conversation.  He was emotional.  After fighting through tears, Justin asked Katie if he was there by default.  Katie said it was a fair question.  It wasn’t until that date with Blake, that she felt in her heart that Blake was the one.  Justin said spending time with Katie made him a better person, and his parents have seen the difference.


Katie hopes that her family supports and trusts her decision to be with Blake.  Katie warned that her mom is very outspoken and opinionated.  Katie described her Aunt, Lindsay, as “cold.”   Her mom said the last thing is for Blake to try to build himself up because all that matters is that Katie likes him.

Katie’s aunt talked to Blake first.  She said he “ultimately means nothing” and he had better be secure as f*#k coming into their family.  Katie sat-down with mom and talked.  Mom worried about the process being “super speedy.”  Katie said “we don’t NEED each other.  We want to be together.”  Mom said we are on a foundation where “we don’t need a male.”  Lindsay asked Blake what  he was going to do if marriage gets hard.  She said “that’s not how it works…and is that where you’re at?   Do you want to marry her?”  Blake said in his confessional, that Lindsay was more hesitant about him.  “All I could say was words to reassure her but nothing was the right thing to say.”

Lindsay asked why Katie wants Blake? She said he’s the one because they both have their own thing going on separately and she still wants some independence. Lindsay reacted that living separately for a month is a long time.  Mom asked Blake if he’s going to ask Katie to marry him?  He said he’s figuring that out.  Are they moving in together?  Blake answered that he would love to move in right away.  Blake told mom that he was nervous about love and hasn’t said it in a while.  Mom said she can see their love when they’re together.  Blake said he’s excited about giving all of himself and he just knows they’ll be happy together.

Mom responded to that by crying.  Blake said the intent was to get engaged.  But, there’s a difference between talking about it and doing it.  He said he’s “stressed out!”


It was their last date leading into a proposal.  Blake said there’s’ no doubt that he loves Katie, he just doesn’t know if they’re both ready for an engagement.  Katie said she has fears and insecurities.  But, with Blake she feels protected and loved.  During an exercise, they were asked to write-down their insecurities on paper, then to burn the paper.  Katie said he had fear of abandonment, fear of heart-break, losing Blake, not being pretty enough.  She’s ready to move past those fears if he’s next to her.

In her confessional, Katie said Blake accepts her, and she believes that he’s her soul mate.  Blake said it seems like they’d be perfect together.  “But, when it comes to big decisions like this.  I just want to be sure.”  He said if he’s not ready to propose, she’ll be devastated.


Pictured (l-r): BLAKE MOYNES, TAYSHIA ADAMS. Photo by: ABC/Craig Sjodin

Provider of ‘Bachelor and ‘Bachelorette engagement rings each season, Neil Lane was called by Tayshia who stated that they were a week early because Katie had narrowed it down to one man.   Katie said she feels so sure of her and Blake’s connection and he’s a piece of her life.  “Now that he’s in my life, I don’t want to ever experience a day without him.”  While Blake looked at the rings, he seemed very freaked-out.  Tayshia reassured him  that “this is nerve-wrecking.  But, this is what you came here for.”  Tayshia helped Blake to pick out the ring.  Blake said he felt uneasy and unsure about making this decision.  “The I love you that comes with a ring is different from an I love you without a ring.”    He said it’s just natural to ensure that you’re making the right decision.  As Blake chose a ring.  He looked sick.  He said he’s never felt that way before. Then told Tayshia that he needed a minute.

Blake said he wants clarity.  But, his head “just feels like scrambled eggs.”  As Katie headed out in her gown to wait for a proposal, Blake was still contemplating.  Tayshia told him that if he’s struggling with getting engaged, then he needs to let Katie go.


Pictured: KATIE THURSTON. Photo by: ABC/Craig Sjodin

Katie said Blake is someone I want in my life forever, starting today.”  She said meeting Blake and falling in love with him.  That’s a love I’ve never had before.”  She said he’s her soulmate and she was meant to be with him.  “But, I truly have so many emotions.  I don’t know where Blake’s head is at.”  She said her biggest fear is walking away alone.  Blake was one his way.

Blake said he’s “super nervous.”  He wants Katie to be happy. Blake said with this decision, “you’re making a promise to someone forever.  I just want to breathe, and I feel like I can’t.”  Tayshia and Kaitlyn talked about being nervous for Katie as they waited for Bake’s arrival.  When Blake got there, he said “I’m freaking out…it’s all just very real.” Blake said it just “over takes everything.”

Katie told Blake that he showed-up exactly when he was supposed to show-up.  She told Blake that she never thought she’d fall head over hills for him.  When he told her he loves her, it changed her life.  Because she knew she wanted to love him for the rest of her life.  “I love you today, tomorrow, and forever.  I can’t wait for our adventure to begin.”  Blake was silent.

He said he feels like they’re dreaming and living out a fairy tale.  It seemed too good to be true.  “But, I knew.  I knew the moment I first met you when you called me trouble.”  He said “with you.  I just honestly just knew.  How great a wife you’re going to be.  Mother you’re going to be.”   Blake ultimately said “I can’t give you what you came here for.  Because you deserve a lot more than that.  You deserve the world.  I’m excited to be there to support you every day moving forward.”  Then, “with that being said,”  Blake got down on one knee and proposed.

Then, Katie asked if he would accept the final rose.  “Yes,” and they’re engaged!  Tayshia and Kaitlyn joined in the celebration and said they were there to see them fall in love from the beginning.  Blake and Katie rode off on horses.


Greg got the first impression rose, and the first one-on-one date.  Greg said he didn’t know how unhappy he was until Katie showed him how happy he could be.  He felt like he had given her his everything, and she gave nothing back.  What was he hoping to have in that conversation?  “I was hoping to get back on the same page.  There was a disconnect.”  Kaitlyn asked if he would have done anything differently?  He said “no” and everything happened for a reason.

Pictured: KATIE THURSTON, GREG. Photo by: ABC/Eric McCandless

Katie came out to talk to Greg.  Katie said she never felt that he never intended to engage.  She was angry at Greg because she gave him validation every week.  She felt that he was looking for a perfect opportunity to escape because he never was going to be ready for a proposal.

She said he spoke down to her, he said he loved her.  But, doesn’t know what love is because he ran away.  Greg said he’s happy that she found her person.  Katie felt that Greg used her as “acting experience.” Greg said “I’m no Meryl Streep.”  Katie clarified that she felt Greg was acting with her.  “He’s actually a cocky guy from Jersey”  and doesn’t know if she knows who Greg is.

Katie said she felt that Greg was gaslighting her.  She also said he was rude and left without saying “good bye.”  Greg reacted that he was sorry and it was a tough environment to be in.   “I wish I could go back and change how I communicated my feelings.”  He said he truthfully didn’t want to leave.

Greg said he felt that Katie was playing the role of ‘the Bachelorette’ with him and felt that she controlled how she vocalized.  Katie said she felt that if Greg really loved her, that moment wouldn’t have pushed him away and he would have stayed.  She said the second she told someone that they’re the one, then her journey is over.

Greg said he emptied his heart out to her and all he got “was just a pat on the back…I just wanted it to be a two-way street.”  Katie said when Greg left so did everything that she felt for him.  Greg said to Katie, “I wish nothing but the best.”  Katie said the same to him.



Pictured: KATIE THURSTON, BLAKE MOYNES. Photo by: ABC/Eric McCandless

It was their first public appearance at the end of the show.  Blake said “it’s tough to celebrate an engagement secretly.”  Katie said her family doesn’t know that they are engaged, and are finding out with the rest of Bachelor Nation because they can’t keep a secret.  When did Blake know he was falling in love with Katie?  Blake said it was during the hometown date when they were playing hockey  “There’s a difference between falling in love and knowing you’re in love,”  he said he knew the next day after the hometown date.  Katie said they are so much more of a stronger couple today than what everyone saw in the episode.

Blake said when he looked at the rings, it started to hit him.  He knew that would be the only time he’d ever do that.  “I wanted to make sure that I was making the right decision for not only me, but for us.”  Katie said the fact that Blake was unsure for a moment, shows that he meant it.”

Katie said a thousand percent it was worth it.  She said he stayed through the end even when she said she was contemplating on leaving.  Katie thanked Tayshia for introducing her to Blake.  She thanked Kaitlyn for picking her up in her darkest moment on the bathroom floor after Greg left.

Blake told Katie that the way she carries herself is really sexy.  “I guess what I’m trying to say…”  Then, multiple men in the audience held up boomboxes that played the song “Memorize You.”  The song that they danced to during their first date.


BACHELOR IN PARADISE SNEAK-PEEK: The teaser was narrated by one of B.I.P. new hosts, Lil Jon:  “America has waited for two long years!! It’s going to be bigger and sexier than ever!”



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