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'My Antonio' couple Antonio Sabato Jr. and Brooke Barlow already split


By Christopher Rocchio, 10/28/2009 

Brooke Barlow claims her relationship with My Antonio star Antonio Sabato Jr. was over way before the pre-taped finale of the VH1 reality dating series aired Sunday night.

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"I'm just going to be honest with you: I am not in touch with Antonio. We haven't spoken in probably two, three months," Barlow told VH1 in a post-finale interview.

Sabato chose the 30-year-old nurse from Jackson, MS after whittling down a group of 14 bachelorettes during the reality dating series' broadcast run. Barlow said their inability to be seen in public during the long layoff between when the show filmed in January and when it aired contributed to their split.

"We couldn't really court, because we weren't allowed to be seen in public, so it's very difficult to try to have a relationship behind closed doors," she said.

"We had just met and we tried to pull it off. We saw each other for probably a couple of months after the show was filmed, and then we just decided it was best to see other people, and I haven't heard from him since."

Despite the lack of communication over the past few months, Barlow assured viewers that she and Sabato did give a real-world relationship a try.

"We put effort into it. I met his children. We would go hiking on the weekends in his back yard in the woods. We saw each other on the weekends, being very careful not to let anyone else see us," she explained.

"If he had any sort of job interview in L.A., he would stop by and visit me in my home. He's adorable. We had a great time -- as good of a time as you could have indoors with no outside contact. It was really nice getting to know him and his children."

In addition, Barlow said "conversation and deep, spiritual connection" was lacking in her relationship with Sabato.

"He thought that should come with time, but to me, I just felt like we didn't have much to talk about," she said.

"Don't get me wrong: I had fun with him and his children. That was great. But do I wish we could have done some more exciting things? Of course. We could have said, 'Hey, let's put our relationship on hold and resume when we don't have to be behind closed doors.'"

However that never happened and Barlow wonders if there will ever be a romantic relationship between the two.

"I think we could be really good friends. I'm not mad at him. You can't say a bad thing about Antonio Sabato, Jr. He is beautiful and he has a very kind heart," she said. "If he called me and wanted to go to dinner, sure. As far as picking back up in some sort of serious, committed relationship, that would take some time."

Despite no longer being in a relationship with Sabato, Barlow said it was "satisfying" to be chosen over Miranda, a 30-year-old makeup artist from New York, NY, since she's "competitive by nature."

"To me, he and Miranda were not a match from the beginning, because she's so fearful and she doesn't have an athletic bone in her body," she explained. "Winning was still a great shock and immensely satisfying. Do I wish $1 million would have come with it? Yes! That would have been icing on the cake."

Barlow described Miranda as "quite interesting."

"You could probably make a show about Miranda and her quirky self," said Barlow.

"She lives in a bubble and she's a little OCD. I felt like she wasn't always who you see Miranda to be. I felt like she had a different side when the cameras weren't there. She was not a happy person, and I am a happy person."

Barlow added that she "did not know who Antonio Sabato, Jr. was before I did this show" and reiterated her questioning of his acting skills since he was on a reality dating show.

"The reality is that if you're an actor and you're doing a reality show, your acting career isn't on top. I'm not an idiot. I just wanted to know what his goals were," she explained.

Barlow also addressed how she had Sabato ink a relationship contract. While she wishes that she waited to approach him about it until their relationship was more serious, she stood by her decision to make him know she wasn't a floozy.

"I just wanted Antonio to know that I'm not an easy girl to be with, that if he wanted a casual, sexual relationship, that's just not me," she said.

"Basically, before taking that plunge, I wanted to know: how often are you going to see me, is it just going to be me and what are your long-term goals for me? I want to be courted, and regardless of an engagement ring or whatever, those things are important to know before I let someone in."

Barlow said she has no regrets about going on My Antonio and hopes it leads to more TV gigs for her.

"I would love for this to parlay into some great hosting career or some other great experiences derived from the show, but overall I have no regrets. I'll never not nurse. I love what I do, but at the same time, it'd be nice to have some options," she explained.

"Had the relationship worked out, I wouldn't have cared about parlaying it into exposure and opportunities. But since it didn't, I'm hoping the exposure will enable me to have other work."

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