Breaking up is hard to do. Nearly one week after Michelle Young and Nayte Olukoya announced they called off their engagement, the former Bachelorette contestant denied allegations surrounding the nature of their split.
“No, I didn’t cheat,” the Canada native, 27, wrote via Instagram Story on Saturday, June 25, as part of a lengthy list. “Not every breakup needs to have someone to blame. Yes, many of you seem to paint me as a red flag/ f—k boy … But I’m actually a decent guy, and I only want to continue getting better. As we should all want for ourselves.”
Olukoya, who announced his breakup from the 29-year-old former Bachelorette earlier this month, noted that the negativity and “blatant hate” he has received has been “hurtful” as he mourns his split.
“I went on the show with no expectations. Just an open mind and an open heart,” the reality TV alum added in his Saturday Story, giving Young a sweet shoutout for further opening up his heart. “But figured if I find my person, then thank God I went. Yes, I truly believed Michelle was my person.”
The Texas resident, who proposed to the elementary school teacher during the December 2021 finale of The Bachelorette, announced on June 17 that he and Young had called off their engagement after less than one year together.
“Michelle and I are going to move forward separately,” he captioned a Story statement at the time. “Hearts are heavy, emotions are high, and we are dealing with this the best way we can. … When we both started this journey, we were looking for our soulmates. Our forever. Our best friends.”
He added: “However, as we grow and learn, we also realize that sometimes somebody that you hold dear to your heart isn’t somebody you’re meant to spend the rest of your life with.”
Young similarly shared a breakup message via her own social media account, writing, “I’m struggling to say that Nayte and I will be going out separate ways, but I stand with him in knowing the heaviness that is present in both our hearts as this relationship has been very real for us. … At the same time, I’m deeply hurting and will need time and space to work through this heartbreak.”
Since the duo’s split, Olukoya has also changed his Instagram bio, removing “THE Michelle Young Fan Account” mention that he added after his televised proposal. (He has yet to delete their joint photos at the time of publication.)
Young and Olukoya initially connected on season 18 of The Bachelorette, where he earned both her first and last rose. After getting engaged, they planned to move in together in her Minnesota hometown.
“Plans changed as we decided there was no need to rush anything and get to know each other on a deeper level before taking the leap of living together,” he added on Saturday. “There’s no rush in life. There’s no rule book or timeline on how to go about your relationship. We believed that since the love was there, everything would fall into place naturally and in its own time.”
He concluded: “We tried. It didn’t work. We’re sad about it. We all grieve different.”