Three is a crowd. After Austen Kroll found himself caught in a love triangle on Winter House, Ciara Miller revealed that the situation “wasn’t great” for her and Lindsay Hubbard when he appeared on season 6 of Summer House.
“It wasn’t a great mix in the dynamic. It definitely made me take a step back from him and just kind of be like, ‘What are you doing?’ It did make me question him for a while,” Ciara, 26, exclusively told Us Weekly on Tuesday, January 11, while promoting the Bravo show. “These are things that I’ve discussed with him.”
The Georgia native noted that she found Austen, 34, to be different on Summer House compared to when they met in the premiere season of Winter House last year.
“It did make me wonder. I was like, ‘Do I even really know you?’ Like, ‘Were you just somebody different in the wintertime? Were you putting on an act to kind of pull me in and then you’re pulling the rug out from under me?'” she recalled. “But I think that he was in such a different head space in the summer [and] that played into some of his actions. Not that they are excuses, but sometimes you really have to be in a head space to be filming and come to our parties and be in our house.”
Ciara, who had a brief romance with the Southern Charm star during their time in Vermont, defended Austen possibly not “feeling it” when it came to his time on Summer House, adding, “There was a little bit of pressure, and he has a people pleasing tendency. He wants to make people happy.”
Viewers originally saw Austen caught between Ciara and Lindsay, 36, when the trio appeared on Winter House. As the Trop Hop Beers founder grew closer to the nurse, his friendship with Lindsay took a turn offscreen.
In October 2021, Austen made headlines after he chose Ciara over Lindsay during the “Pick Your Winter Spouse!” segment on Watch What Happens Live With Andy Cohen. Fans noticed that the publicist unfollowed Austen after he chose Ciara as the better cuddler and better kisser during the game.
At the time, Lindsay said that being in the audience made her feel “uncomfortable” because all cameras were on her.
“I’m just always a very comfortable in my own skin kind of person. But that moment was extremely uncomfortable and listen, thank God [Austen’s sister] Katie [Kroll] was there because I was holding her hand, like, the world was coming to an end,” she said during an appearance on the “Reality Life with Kate Casey” podcast one month later. “I can’t be [OK] with keeping that kind of person in my life.”
Kroll, for his part, didn’t understand why Lindsay was upset, telling costar Craig Conover on a “Pillows and Beer” livestream, “I thought that we were moving on and being, like, much more adult about it, to be totally honest.”
Although Ciara was “not involved” in the rift between Austen and Lindsay, the reality star wasn’t sure why it became “that serious” over the WWHL questions.
“I mean [Austen] texted me after it,” she told Us. “I tried to put myself in that situation, like, if I was sitting in the audience and it was one of my really good guy friends that kissed or hooked up with. But I also don’t care that much. Like, I didn’t find it that big of a deal. If he would’ve picked Lindsay, I would’ve been cool. But then it’s also a choice to sit in the audience as well. So, it was a heated episode.”
Since filming wrapped on season 6 of Summer House, Ciara shared that she had gotten to “a better place” with Austen after he seemingly reignited his casual relationship with Lindsay, saying, “We definitely had to have a very long conversation, but we’re definitely better than how we left the summer.”
Summer House returns to Bravo Monday, January 17 at 9 p.m. ET.
With reporting by Christina Garibaldi