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HOME > The Bachelorette > The Bachelorette 8

Arie Luyendyk Jr: I didn't watch my 'The Bachelorette' season on TV at first


By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 07/26/2012 

Arie Luyendyk Jr. was rejected by The Bachelorette star Emily Maynard in favor of Jef Holm during Sunday night's eighth-season finale of the ABC reality dating show.

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Arie, a 30-year-old race car driver from Scottsdale, AZ, was admittedly broken hearted after his ouster and desperately sought closure to the point where he almost immediately took a plane to Charlotte, NC, and upon discovering Emily wasn't home, left his personal The Bachelorette journal on her doorstep to read. Emily told Arie she never read the journal for multiple reasons, and now, the race car driver is simply trying to pick up the pieces of his love life and move forward.

During a Tuesday conference call with reporters, Arie talked to Reality TV World about his The Bachelorette experience and emotional elimination. Click here to read what he had to say.

Below are some additional highlights from ABC's transcript of the rest of Arie's call -- including whether he was upset Emily had denied him his fantasy suite date, how much dating he's done since his elimination, what his thoughts are on potentially becoming the next The Bachelor star, and how he got over Emily once he returned home and prepared himself for The Bachelorette's airing.

To read what Emily and Jef, the newly-engaged happy couple had to say, click here.

What was your reaction when you found out that Emily didn't invite you to the fantasy suite, and also as a follow-up, America would love for you to be the next Bachelor, so is that something you would consider?

Arie Luyendyk: As far as the fantasy suite goes, I think that it was obviously -- I'd never watched the show before, so I didn't know or expect anything, and when that date had arrived, I definitely respected her decision.

Obviously she's thinking about Ricki and she was in love with Jef and myself, and I could see how she'd want to save something for Jef.  And I'm only seeing it from my perspective, so I definitely respect her decision to forgo that.

[As for The Bachelor], that's a very tough decision and I'd really have to put a lot of thought to that.  Obviously, months have gone by since the taping, but it is a very emotional journey and it'd be a tough decision for me, but I would be flattered if they asked.

Since the show finished taping and you're back in Arizona, what does it do for your dating life being on a show like The Bachelorette?  Are you very popular now?

Arie Luyendyk: I haven't dated at all, actually, really out of respect for the show.  And obviously the viewers really felt like it was either Jef or I, so I didn't want to give anything away for the show, so I haven't been on any dates, and I have yet to see that impact.

Are you getting recognized a lot in the valley?

Arie Luyendyk: Yeah, and I've been getting recognized and it's very sweet, and everyone's been very kind and it's been great to see that I have so much support on the show.

So since you said you would be interested in doing The Bachelor, do you think you would be a better Bachelor than [Sean Lowe]?  Why or why not?

Arie Luyendyk: Well, I didn't say that, not in many words.  I really feel like it's a tough decision and I have to give it a lot of thought.  And for me, the most important thing is that I realize through the experience I did find love, and it was a really great experience for me because it opened me up and it really allowed me to self-reflect a lot.

And I do think there's someone out there for me.  So, who knows what the future holds, but at this point it'd be a really tough decision and I haven't really made that yet.

Do you think you'd be a better bachelor than Sean though?

Arie Luyendyk: Sean is a great guy and I think we'd both be great, but I think it's a tough decision, and once you've been through it and realize how emotional it is -- and it is a very unique experience.  It's a very hard decision to make, so I think either Sean or myself would be good for that.

Do you think that anything would've gone differently if you had met Emily's family before or had had your last one-on-one date prior to Jef?  Is there anything you look back and think, "I wish this had happened differently and maybe there would've been a different outcome?"

Arie Luyendyk: It's so hard to say.  I try not to look back at things and I think everything happens for a reason. And things may have turned out differently, but I know that Jef is an amazing man and he's going to be very good to her, and I could really see that she's happy and that makes me happy. 

So, I try not to look back at it, just try to look forward, and I know that although she wasn't the right person for me, there is somebody out there for me, and so I just try to look forward and stay positive.

When we spoke to Jef and Emily, they mentioned the possibility of you being Jef's best man in their wedding.  Is this something you discussed or would be onboard for, or would that be a bit awkward?

Arie Luyendyk: No, I'd totally be onboard for it.  I have nothing but love for them and they're a big part of my life, and Jef and I were best friends on the show and we always joked about it and talked about it. And so, there's no hard feelings and I'm really feel happy for them, and it's so heartfelt to know that they're in a good place.

Now that you're getting a little bit more recognition -- kind of entering the celebrity world -- would you ever consider dating a celebrity, someone whose name is out there, or would you rather go back to, I guess, dating someone who isn't in the limelight?

Arie Luyendyk: I haven't ever thought about that.  That's the first time I've ever been asked that.  I guess for me it's just about the person.  It's not about anything else, so who knows who I'll meet?

Do you have any celebrity crushes in mind you wouldn't mind hearing from?

Arie Luyendyk: I would say my celebrity crush is Kate Beckinsale. I think she's married, so I guess I don't really have a celebrity crush, then.  She's taken.

I knew you said that you haven't been dating, but I know when The Bachelorette was airing there were photos that surfaced of you and your alleged ex-girlfriend, Sonya.  Was that just a platonic meeting, or could you explain what that was about?

Arie Luyendyk: Totally.  I mean, I'm still really good friends with Sonya.  I'm good friends with some of my ex-girlfriends, and I think that -- and I was in L.A., and so we just met for coffee.  And she's always been a friend of mine ever since we broke up, and we dated in our early 20s and there isn't anything there.  She's just a really good person and she offers me a lot of good advice, so we still talk.

Do you think you'll be going on dates again soon in the near future, or are you sort of taking a break from dating right now?

Arie Luyendyk: I don't really know.  It just all depends on who I meet, and I know that I'm open and that I'm ready to start dating, and you just kind of never know.  I think it's a -- whenever it comes to dating, it's usually best if it happens and it's organic and it's by chance, and I really feel like you -- I don't know what my future holds, but I'm definitely open and ready to start dating.

Do you wish you could've met Ricki and do you think that would have changed things?

Arie Luyendyk: Like I said before, I try not to look back and ask the question, "What if??"  I know that Emily and Jef are really happy, and I'm happy for them, so I really can't look back and ask that question.

You said that you're really happy for Emily and Jef, which is great.  Do you think it made it easier for you that you were good friends with Jef, or do you think it made it a little bit harder?

Arie Luyendyk: I think it definitely made it easier, because after the show I would still even talk to Jef.  I would call him and we'd chat a little bit, and that really helped me move forward as well.  And because we're such good friends, we could talk so openly.  That was a big factor in me obviously moving forward.

Did you ever feel mad that Jef didn't tell you before you flew to Charlotte that he was engaged to Emily?  Do you ever feel you wish he would've told you beforehand?

Arie Luyendyk: At that point, I hadn't talked to Jef.  I got home and there were just a few days before I had to leave for the Indianapolis 500, and I really wanted to gain that closure or to move forward, and so I didn't tell anyone I was flying to Charlotte. 

I flew there by myself and that's -- I think that's something that -- everything was so fresh, I didn't want to call Jef at that point.  I just wanted to find out for myself, and so I didn't really confide in [him first].

I know you were talking about the journal and how you didn't want to stay home because you didn't think you could go out publicly and be okay.  We were just wondering how you moved on after you returned from Charlotte and how you prepared yourself for the season airing.

Arie Luyendyk: That's a good question.  It was very tough.  It was very tough to be around people, especially people I love, my friends, my family.  My parents knew but my siblings didn't, and it was tough to put up that front and to not show everybody how hurt I was... And it helped talking to Jef and Emily, and that is what got me through.

And so it was a tough time, but I feel like in any breakup you go through that, and it's good, because it makes you stronger and it really gives you clarity on what you need and what you want out of a relationship.  And I really feel like now I'm in that place to know more of what I want out of a relationship, and I know that Emily and I weren't right for each other and that helped me get through it.

How did you prepare for the season airing and all of America watching your relationship with Emily and hers with Jef?

Arie Luyendyk: I didn't watch at first, and then after tons of people came up to me and talked to me about the show, I felt like I had watched it. So I ended up watching it and it was good for me, because watching it was very therapeutic.  I could see her relationship with Jef and I could see that they had something really special, and that also helped me get through it.

What was the reason why you didn't start watching it from the beginning?  Was there anything specific?

Arie Luyendyk: It just felt too soon.  I just got home and literally just a few days later the first episode aired.  So, I felt like everything was very fresh, and I remember everything just how it happened, through my thoughts and my memory and my journal, and I didn't want to see the TV version of it.

Like I said, after talking with a lot of people about the show and everyone coming up to me and talking about it, I really felt like I had to watch it, because it seemed so entertaining.  And it really was, actually, and it was great to see their relationship. 

It made me miss that journey and it made me miss all the other guys in the house too, because although there was a relationship with Emily and I, there were also a lot of friendships formed and it was such a great experience for me.

Above are some additional highlights from ABC's transcript of the rest of Arie's call. To read what he had to say to Reality TV World, click here.

To read what Emily and Jef, the newly-engaged happy couple had to say, click here.

(Photo credit ABC)


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