The best conversation that will never see the light of day. The Bachelor winner Rachael Kirkconnell and runner-up Michelle Young sat down together on the After the Final Rose special, but the scene never aired. Now, host Emmanuel Acho is revealing what that conversation was all about.
“My favorite conversation from After the Final Rose that you never saw. TV time constraints limit you from broadcasting everything you desire,” the athlete, 30, wrote via Instagram on Tuesday, March 16. “But while talking to @michelle.young.1 I could sense she was still hurt that @rachaelkirkconnell never reached out to her personally once the photos surfaced, given their friendship on the show. It wasn’t planned nor in the script, but I figured they’re both in the building why not talk it out face to face, plus when I see an opportunity for reconciliation I take it. Thankfully, Rachael was willing, and Michelle hadn’t left yet, so we brought the two out to talk it out!”
In his recap of the conversation, the Uncomfortable Conversations with a Black Man author explained that when speaking to Young, 27, she shared that she had reached out to Kirkconnell, 24, about the racially insensitive photos that surfaced — but she never heard back.
“Michelle was broken over that. I sensed that,” Acho said. “I reached out to the producers via my microphone and said, ‘Hey, we have to get Michelle and Rachael to somehow reconcile. I knew after talking to Matt we probably weren’t going to see reconcile relationally between him and Rachael during the course of the episode, so what kind of reconciliation could we see?”
He detailed their conversation, which included both women pouring their hearts out to each other, then hugging.
“The two shared an embrace. I simply sat there and witnessed it and thought, if we could see this collectively as a society, we could all grow. It was a beautiful depiction that I got to witness and for the sake of time, you all did not get to witness. That was my favorite moment that you all didn’t see.”
“As more and more information started to come out, I started to feel hurt by what I was seeing,” the Minnesota native said. “That was a prime example of not understanding the history behind it, not being educated enough on what that actually meant, what her actions actually meant, how we see it. I feel like Rachael has a good heart. I do, but I think there’s a lot of learning. It comes off very inconsiderate.”
“I see someone who was living in this ignorance without even, like, thinking about who it would be hurting. You know, I never once asked myself at any point, like, ‘What’s the tradition behind this? What does this represent? Why do we wear those dresses?’ I’m not gonna sit here and say that I didn’t know any better, because I could’ve easily asked myself those questions. I never took the time to make that connection, because if I would have taken the time, I easily could’ve understood what was wrong with it,” the graphic designer explained after the finale. “In my eyes, there’s no excuse.”