Chris Soules is The Bachelor! After a bittersweet exit from Andi Dorfman’s season of The Bachelorette, the farmer from Arlington, Iowa, is searching for love once again on ABC’s hit franchise. Chris, 33, will be blogging for PEOPLE.com every week about the women, the dates and the difficult decisions he’ll make on his journey to love. So check back every week, and follow Chris on Twitter.
Waking up after my group date in Des Moines, I didn’t want to dwell on what happened with Britt, so I just decided to focus all my energy on Becca, and I’m so glad I did. I know I just had a one-on-one with Becca in Deadwood, but it catapulted our relationship forward, and I wanted to build on that momentum. It was so nice to spend a regular day with Becca. Just hanging with her in my loft felt so normal.
Now, here’s a little tidbit about “my” loft. I don’t live in Des Moines. I don’t have a place in Des Moines. That’s just where I was planning on staying while we were in town. But truthfully, I ended up sleeping at the hotel most of the time, so it was pretty funny calling it “my” loft. I officially want to thank the dude who let me use it. You’ve got a sweet place, but sorry for making out on your couch.
Anyway, that afternoon with Becca was really enlightening for me, in two ways. For one, it reinforced the feelings I thought I had for her. I honestly started falling for her in a real way that day. Secondly, she told me she’d never been in love, which answered some questions I had about her initial hesitance. It explained why she was slower moving than the other women. While it partially worried me about her future ability to fall in love, there was something special about thinking I could be the first person she fell in love with.
Watching now can be so strange. I obviously had no idea Britt had packed her things and told the girls she wanted to leave. What I don’t understand is this: If Britt had packed her things and truly had the intention of leaving, why would she want to wait until the rose ceremony to see me? If she truly wanted to end things with me and leave, why didn’t she try to come see me before? Like Chris Harrison said at the beginning of this whole deal, there were no rules, so she could have easily come to see me and broken up with me, if that’s what she truly wanted. That is something I’ll never understand.
Anyway, going into the rose ceremony, I knew what I was doing to do. Frankly, I was not going to give Britt a rose. Yes, her outburst a couple nights prior had something to do with it, but it wasn’t just that. Her sincerity had been on my mind for a couple days. First remember that Ashley I. said something about her on the two-on-one? When I was saying goodbye to her, she questioned if Britt would be the type to live in Iowa. And what you didn’t get to see was that at the cocktail party in Deadwood, Jade said something to me about Britt. She said she constantly flip-flopped on her opinions and was just telling me what I wanted to hear. Carly was almost the last straw.
I also started feeling like Britt’s over-the-topness wasn’t fully sincere. It started to feel like she was putting on a performance. And the girls’ comments supported that. It was too bad because we did have such a strong connection right off the bat. But truthfully, now I question all of that. Early on I thought she, and our connection, was too good to be true. Turns out it was.
When Britt pulled me aside during the rose ceremony, I wasn’t surprised. Her recent behavior led me to believe she was going to do something strange. I was thankful that she apologized for the other night, and I accepted her apology. But truthfully, I felt like I was being manipulated to feel like I was somehow in the wrong. It was like she was trying to break up with me first, knowing I was going to break up with her. It was very strange. It was as if this whole time she was putting on a show, and she finally got caught, realized I wasn’t buying it anymore, and she tried to turn it on me. This isn’t how your future wife is supposed to make you feel, so I knew in that moment I was making the right decision.
Saying goodbye to Britt was hard because of how good things were earlier on, and I truly wish her the best because she is an incredible woman, but ending it was the right move for both of us.
Saying goodbye to Carly was very hard. I knew how hard her past relationships had been, and I didn’t want to be yet another man to disappoint her. But I had to be true to my heart. Even though I had a great connection with Carly, unfortunately it wasn’t as strong as my connections with the other women, and I was in a situation in which I had to make decisions, even sometimes before I was ready to. And that was one of those times. That week in Iowa was my hardest yet, and I couldn’t wait to go to the girls’ hometowns.
I was really excited to go to Becca’s hometown. I haven’t spent much time in the South, and I’d never been to Louisiana, but it was exactly how I pictured it. The bayou was almost as beautiful as Becca, and I was happy I didn’t have to wrestle a gator! (But if it came down to it, I would wrestle a gator, a bear – hell, I might even throw down with Hulk Hogan to protect Becca.)
Hearing from Becca that she’d never brought a man home before made me even more nervous to meet her family, but as soon as I walked into that house, I felt at home. Becca’s family is truly fantastic. They’re tight-knit and loving, and they’re all beautiful.
I felt at home there because they reminded me of my family. I could see myself fitting in with that family, and I could see our families meshing together perfectly. After meeting them I could see why Becca is such a special person. Unfortunately you didn’t get to see my chat with Becca’s brother-in-law, former NFL stud Jacob Hester. (Yup, that Jacob Hester.) As a former football player and a guy who loves watching the game, I was a bit starstruck when we first sat down to chat in his basement, which was, by the way, a complete shrine to his career. There were jerseys all over the walls, newspaper photos blown up, just NFL everything; he’s got the ultimate man-cave. And, the guy is so down-to-earth and cool. I could totally see him as my brother-in-law. Okay, enough about my man crush. Becca’s whole family was awesome, and meeting them definitely moved our relationship to another level.
Hearing from Becca’s sister, Katie, that Becca was not an intimate person definitely worried me. I’m very intimate, and intimacy is a very important part of a relationship for me. I’m also very affectionate and touchy-feely (as you all know by now), so that was definitely cause for some concern. But my feelings for Becca outweighed all of my concerns.
What you don’t know is that day with Becca’s family was actually her birthday! I had given her a gift (a necklace and bracelets), and that’s why I set up that special Ferris wheel ride. Becca had told me the state fair was in town and how much she loved it, so I arranged to go there after it closed, to take her on a special birthday ride. I’m not going to lie, it was one of the most romantic moments of my life, and in that moment, Becca did not seem scared of intimacy.
I couldn’t wait to go to Chicago to see Whitney. Chicago is truly a second home to me. It’s only about four hours away from Arlington. I have had family living there my whole life, so it is a place I have spent a lot of time and is a place I love, not to mention it’s the home of Da Bears!
When Whitney said we were going to make a baby, I first thought, “Umm, it might be a little soon?!” It was very cute; that girl always has something up her sleeve for me. I’ve never worn scrubs before, and I was horrified, but Whitney looked damn sexy in those scrubs. Even sexier was how smart she is and how passionate she is about what she does. I could tell how proud she is of her career, and it’s really remarkable that she completes people’s families for a living.
When Whitney and her boss took me into the room “where the magic happens,” I really thought for a moment that she was going to have me prove that my soldiers could march, but I quickly realized they were giving me a hard time. But then I started thinking about what actually happens in that room, and I couldn’t get out of there fast enough!
I knew meeting Whitney’s family was going to be different, since she, sadly, doesn’t have parents. That’s why I had to ask her whom she would want me to ask for permission if I wanted to propose. Let me just say, that was a hard question to ask. I could have never predicted what happened with her sister, though. I knew how strong Whitney’s feelings were for me, and it caught me off guard that her sister refused to give her blessing. I totally understood her position, because this was a weird situation: a) she isn’t Whitney’s parent, and b) I was dating three other women. I would have loved to have received her blessing, but it didn’t affect my feelings for Whitney.
Later that night, hearing Whitney say she’d fallen in love with me reminded me why I embarked on this journey. The past couple of weeks had been so hard and so heart-wrenching, but hearing Whitney say those words made everything worth it. Also, seeing how “excited” her dog was about all the love in the air totally made my night. I almost felt the need to cover both mine and Whitney’s eyes, but apparently the dog does that all the time. That pooch taught me some moves I didn’t even know existed.
Being from a small town, I was a little disappointed that I didn’t get to go to Kaitlyn’s actual hometown of LeDuc, Alberta. But Canadians, like Iowans, love to fly south for the winter, so that’s why I met her family in the desert, not the tundra!
Writing a rap with Kaitlyn was the perfect way to spend the day. You didn’t get to see it, but at the cocktail party in Deadwood, I wrote a little rap that I performed for her. I sucked, once again, but I thought it was something she’d enjoy. So, writing a rap together in her hometown was appropriate. I wanted to take it seriously and write meaningful words, and I think she was really listening to what I had to say. And yes, you don’t need to tell me, I know: I suck at rapping. I suck at rapping, I suck at speeches, I suck at writing songs. I farm! That, I’m good at.
Meeting Kaitlyn’s family was really special. Even though her parents are no longer married to each other, they’re happily married to other people and all get along very well. I did speak to both her dad and her stepdad; I asked both for their blessing should I propose to Kaitlyn, and they both lovingly obliged. That meant a lot to me, as it was very scary having to ask two dads. When Kaitlyn told me she had a surprise for me at the end of the night, I was terrified we were going to have to go perform our rap somewhere. Thankfully, that wasn’t the case, and instead she presented me with that awesome billboard that said “Kaitlyn ❤ Chris."
Some of you might remember that at my hometown date with Andi, I had a plane pull a sign that said “Chris Loves Andi.” I wasn’t ready at the point to say the words “I’m in love with you” to her, but I was almost there. Seeing that billboard with Kaitlyn’s and my names, I knew what that meant. I knew she was on her way to being in love, and it was her way of telling me how she felt. Knowing that Kaitlyn had been reserved in the past with her feelings, it meant the world that she put herself out there like that.
Jade’s hometown, Gering, Nebraska, felt a lot like home. It looked a lot like home. It smelled a lot like home. Actually, it didn’t smell like home because it didn’t smell like hog manure, but with that one exception, it smelled like home. And it made me realize that, of anybody, Jade understands where I’m from – like, really understands what life in Arlington would be. We got to spend a bit of the day walking around and having coffee at the local bakery, and then we went to meet her family.
Talking to her family, I realized very quickly that I didn’t really know the real Jade. They kept calling her a “free spirit,” and her brother even called her a “wild mustang.” I’ve said before that I want some edge in my future wife. I love to unleash and let go and have fun. But that was basically the opposite of the Jade I’d seen up until that point. The Jade I knew was quiet, shy, almost meek. I was intrigued by what her family was saying, but almost disturbed by the fact that the Jade I knew was so different from what they were describing. I was also a bit disturbed by her brother Zach’s concern about Jade’s willingness to move back to a small town. I hadn’t really questioned that about Jade, but I started feeling like there was this whole side to her that I didn’t know about.
Later that night, I could have never anticipated what Jade told me. When she started sharing that she had something to tell me, my mind immediately went to the worst. I was almost relieved when she revealed that she’d done some nude modeling. When she offered to show me the photos, I really didn’t know what to say. A big part of me did not want to see that, but knowing that it was important to her for me to see it with her, I reluctantly obliged; it was extremely uncomfortable, though.
Look, I’m not going to judge anyone for things they’ve done in their past. Let’s be honest, there are things in my past that I’m not proud of. If Jade was my soulmate and “the one,” I would never let that come between us. The words I said to Jade were true. Seeing those photos did not change how I felt about her. But how I felt about her after meeting all the girls’ families was just not strong enough to move our relationship to the next level.
As you saw, saying goodbye to Jade was extremely painful. I didn’t realize it would hit me so hard. I was starting to fall in love with her, for sure. But I was also starting to fall in love with the other three women. Do you know how weird it is to be falling in love with multiple people at the same time? I didn’t think it was possible before I embarked on this journey, but let me tell you, it is possible. It’s confusing and painful and exciting at the same time.
Saying goodbye to Jade broke my heart. I will always care about her and always know that in another lifetime we could have been in love with each other. But our connection just wasn’t as deep as the others. I felt like we were always playing catch-up. I know she opened up as much as she could, but I needed more from her – especially since the other women were so vocal about their feelings. But in that moment, I really felt like I could have been making a terrible decision because it hurt so much. I clearly couldn’t hold back the tears.
That was really the beginning of the end for me as far as crying goes. From here on, I basically turn into a huge baby. Just wanted to warn you.
Next week, I go to beautiful Bali with Becca, Whitney and Kaitlyn. Will Becca reveal her secret to me? Will we go to the fantasy suite together? Will anyone turn down the fantasy suite? How do I say goodbye to a woman I’m falling in love with? You’ll have to tune in to find out.
I know it was a long one, so thanks for reading,
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