According to Maynard, before the show even started taping her edition, The Bachelorette's producers had told her one of the men they were considering had dated Lambert years ago and asked whether she'd have an issue with it.
"Before we started filming, I had been told that there may be one contestant on the show this season who had dated Cassie, and I was asked if I would mind. Once I knew it was almost a decade ago, and knowing that Cassie is engaged to another one of my favorite producers, Pete, I was fine with it," The Bachelorette star wrote on her People blog.
"I put it way out of my head as I was gearing up to meet the men, so when Cassie took it upon herself halfway through the season to tell me who the guy was, I was definitely surprised."
Maynard was apparently upset Lambert and Luyendyk Jr. neglected to share the information with her sooner given they both had numerous opportunities to confront her.
"We had all been together so many times and it was never mentioned that they had ever met before, and that's where my feelings of mistrust came in. If you knew Cassie the way I do, you would know what a great person she is, and that I'd be lucky to have a chance with one of her exes!" Maynard explained.
"Although I wish I would have known the specifics earlier, I understand the show didn't want to color my opinion of him. But I was concerned that Arie hadn't told me."
However, The Bachelorette star wasn't sure if she even handled the situation with Luyendyk Jr. well herself, as she kept asking the suitor leading questions about loyalty and honesty during their one-on-one date in Prague Monday night without ever directly addressing her concerns.
"I kept feeling like I should just come out and ask him about their relationship, but I didn't because I'm looking for someone that would just be straightforward with me. It was such a relief to finally have it all out there, and as you can see, we picked up right where we had left off," Maynard said, adding that the night only continued to get better, especially after Luyendyk Jr. confessed his love to her for the first time.
"During dinner, I was so caught off guard when he told me he loves me because it was still so early -- not to mention the stressful day we had just had -- but it was absolutely everything I had hoped for since my very first date with him. Arie and I can have disagreements, but we always bounce back and are even stronger than we were to begin with. Whether it was our bump in the road in London, or this mess in Prague, we always communicate really well. To me that's the most important part of a relationship."
Unlike Luyendyk Jr., bachelor Jef Holm wasn't ready to come right out and tell Maynard he had fallen in love with her. However, the couple's one-on-one date was so special and fun for The Bachelorette star, it didn't even matter to Maynard that Holm ended the date with, "I like you."
"While we were laying on the floor of the library, we had one of the most honest conversations I'd had during this experience. We talked about kids, faith and everything in between, and it really felt like we were the only two people on the planet! Even though Jef's last words to me weren't exactly what every girl dreams of hearing, it was the perfect ending," Maynard wrote.
Bachelor John Wolfner's date in Prague also capped off perfectly for Maynard at the end of the night, but it wasn't Wolfner's doing.
"As I was walking back to the hotel, I heard someone calling my name to turn around and that's when I saw [Sean Lowe]. What a great surprise! I felt so bad for putting him on the group date and was so happy to have the chance to let him know it was only because I felt so confident in what we had. My face really did hurt from smiling so much!" she explained.
In addition to Lowe, Doug Clerget and Chris Bukowski also shared the group date with Maynard, but her alone time with Lowe the night prior was clearly weighing on her mind still because she ended up giving him the rose. Maynard's decision to highlight her connection with Lowe left Bukowski "insulted" and frustrated, and he gave The Bachelorette star a little piece of his mind afterwards.
"After giving Sean the rose I definitely saw a side of Chris that I thought only existed on Toddlers and Tiaras. I get that his feelings were hurt, but I wish he would have been a little more mature about it," Maynard said, referencing how Bukowski complained about how Maynard was making him wait so long for his second one-on-one date since their first outing together in Charlotte, NC.
Before the night's Rose Ceremony commenced, Bukowski knew he acted out of character and treated Maynard somewhat poorly, and he was desperate to apologize and stay in the competition.
"When Chris asked me if he could speak to me in the middle of handing out roses, I could see on his face something was wrong. I loved that Chris was mature enough to admit his mistakes, take charge and do everything possible to make it better. I know we all have moments that we're not proud of, but the only thing that really matters is how you make up for it and Chris went above and beyond," Maynard explained.
(Photo credit ABC)
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