“Blake has no regrets about his decision to not be on Paradise,” a source tells Us Weekly exclusively of the 32-year-old reality star. “If he and Becca were meant to be then that’s something that would eventually happen, but he’s not looking back. … Blake supports Becca no matter what.”
The Colorado native ended as runner-up on season 14 of The Bachelorette, which aired in 2018. At the time, Kufrin, 31, accepted a proposal from Garrett Yrigoyen, but the pair called off their engagement in September 2020. The former Bachelorette will make a return to the franchise during season 7 of Bachelor in Paradise, which kicked off earlier this month.
“He and Becca have been friends and will remain friends even if Becca [finds] love in Paradise,” the insider adds. “There’s no denying they have chemistry and get along well. They just never took that next step.”
Horstmann previously appeared on season 6 of the summer spinoff series in 2019, but earlier this year, he explained why he turned down the chance to go back to the beach.
“I went through some testing etc. but at the end of the day, I didn’t feel it was right for me,” he wrote during an Instagram Story Q&A in July. “I am in a good place in my life. Personally, professionally and mentally. I didn’t want to go back into an environment that breeds toxicity and emotional abuse.”
Reality TV fans recently wondered whether Kufrin was reconnecting with Horstmann after the duo exchanged flirty messages on social media. During the “Reality Life With Kate Casey” podcast on Friday, August 20, Horstmann shared more insights about where he stands with the Minnesota native.
“We did kind of chat here and there, and we were back in touch within the last, like, six months,” he explained. “It kind of came down to if she was going to do Paradise or not.”
Horstmann admitted he “always thought” Kufrin and Yrigoyen, 32, were end-game. “I completely put her out of my head. It was never something, like, ‘When they break up …’ because I never thought they would,” he continued. “When they did, it was, like, this weird thing of, ‘Well, I wonder if there’s anything still there?'”
The “Behind the Rose” podcast host previously told Us that he has a “great relationship” with his former flame — but he didn’t quite understand why some fans were “still shipping us so hard.”
He noted in March, “The way [she] and Garrett ended — I think people just want to see me and Becca happy, which is a compliment, like, it means a lot. It really, really does. We’re close friends and everything. And we’re, like, always gonna have each other’s back and care for each other.”
With reporting by Diana Cooper