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‘The Bachelorette’: Katie Thurston Shares Past Sexual Assault Experience

Katie Thurston detailed her past experience with sexual assault during the Monday, June 21, episode of The Bachelorette.

Related: How Does 'The Bachelorette' End? Everything Katie Has Said

First, the drama picked up where the June 14 episode left off, as the men interrogated Karl about his declaration that multiple men were not on the show for the right reasons. Katie announced that she could not give the guys the energy they deserved from her, so she was ending the cocktail party early. Greg checked on her, and she confided in him that she could not be confident in everyone anymore. She was still confused as she headed into the rose ceremony.

Nevertheless, Katie began handing out roses, including to Mike P. He used the time to tell her that the group didn’t believe Karl was being truthful and thought he needed to go home. She abruptly halted the rose ceremony to convene with Kaitlyn Bristowe and Tayshia Adams, confessing that she had intended to keep Karl around. However, after the united front from her suitors, she decided to send him home, as well as John, Kyle and Garrett.

Bachelorette 17x03 Recap
Nick Viall and Katie Thurston. ABC/Craig Sjodin

Katie hoped they could put the drama behind them as they moved on to the first group date of the week, during which Nick Viall led a discussion encouraging the men to be honest about their past relationships. Thomas surprised some when he admitted he came on the show to build a platform and even went on a date the week before leaving for filming, but he insisted that his feelings for Katie were real.

Related: 5 Things to Know About Bachelorette Katie Thurston

Katie, meanwhile, was inspired by the contestants’ transparency, so she shared a story about being “involved in a situation where there wasn’t consent” 10 years earlier. She subsequently tried to be in a relationship with the person because she was in denial about the ordeal. She explained that she “had a very unhealthy relationship with sex” after the incident and blamed herself because she had been drinking. However, she learned the importance of consent and ultimately understood it was not her fault.

Katie was pleased with the support she received after opening up about her past, but she was alarmed about Thomas’ confession. She questioned him further at the afterparty about the “red flags,” but he struggled to come up with any answers. Anxious about his chance to receive a rose, Thomas interrupted Aaron’s time with Katie to rave about how special he felt their connection was. Thomas then claimed to his castmates that he told Katie he was falling in love with her but later admitted he said, “You can’t have fear without love.” Despite his efforts, Connor B. got the rose.

Related: Everything Tayshia and Kaitlyn Have Said About Katie’s Journey

Before his one-on-one date, Michael A. revealed that his wife died of cancer two years earlier. He told his story to Katie but assured her they would create their own unique love story. She found herself unexpectedly falling for him because she knew theirs could be a “forever” love. She gave him a rose and acknowledged that every one she extended to him was also being offered to his son, James.

Ahead of the second group date, Hunter asked Thomas if he signed up for the show to be the Bachelor. He confessed the idea had crossed his mind but claimed he was not thinking about it anymore. As the episode ended, the men wondered if Katie would put her walls up even more after learning about Thomas’ duplicity.

The Bachelorette airs on ABC Mondays at 8 p.m. ET.

If you or anyone you know has been sexually abused, call the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673). A trained staff member will provide confidential, judgment-free support as well as local resources to assist in healing, recovering and more.

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