Kendall, who fell in love with Joe on Season 5 of Bachelor in Paradise in 2018, was seemingly looking for more closure from Joe, even though the pair had discussed the demise of their relationship multiple times throughout Season 7 and had agreed to move forward with their lives.
"I was under the impression that Joe was going through a lot of mental difficulty with our relationship and me being there," Kendall toldUs Weekly during Tuesday's episode of its "Here for the Right Reasons" podcast.
"And so, for me, coming back to talk to him, it would be a way to be like, 'Hey, this chapter's closed. It was kind of weird the way we ended it, but let's make it not weird and let's move on.'"
Kendall insisted she had no warning from producers that Joe was about to propose marriage to Serena and she was essentially about to put a little storm cloud over Joe and Serena's beautiful day.
"[I had] no idea there would ever be any sort of proposal at all, not in my mind. And I even said, like, 'If there's gonna be a proposal, I don't want to talk to him. I don't want to go to the beach because that's not my day -- that's their day,'" Kendall recalled.
Kendall, who said she was only on the beach in Mexico for four days, therefore suggested she felt duped by producers to walk into an awkward situation that would create drama and make her look bad.
And shortly after Kendall and Joe's conversation, Joe got down on one knee and proposed marriage to Serena.
Kendall claimed she didn't watch Bachelor in Paradise's seventh season play out on TV and so finding out about her poorly-timed, pre-proposal chat with Joe -- probably through viewer backlash -- surprised her.
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"Finding out later that there was a proposal actually made me really upset and a bit angry," Kendall admitted.
"But that's just what it ended up being. And hopefully, the situation that took place didn't affect -- it seems to not [have] affected their relationship [in] any way or their proposal in any way. Hopefully, it felt just as special, but I would've preferred not to be there that day."
Many fans accused Kendall of still having feelings for Joe and making his proposal day about her.
"I got to the point where I felt like it was a waste of time to even try to defend myself or fight certain thing," Kendall said of the criticism she had received last summer.
"The most important are the people that I love -- my family and my friends, and so that's what I focused on at that time and I took a step back. I didn't think it was emotionally worth it to put myself through the battle of proving myself, because why? I just don't see a reason why."
Kendall, however, said she felt "good" when she left Bachelor in Paradise and has no regrets about appearing on the show to begin with.
"Going back to the beach, I felt I had, like, a romanticism toward Paradise because it was such a romantic experience the first time I went," Kendall explained.
"And then the second time I went, I really had hope for it to be that, not in terms of rekindling anything with my ex -- just because why would I do that publicly when we had a two-year relationship and there's so much stuff we can't talk about on TV? That would've taken more than a couple weeks in Mexico to fix."
But Kendall had hope that she could find someone and really connect with that person.
"And I did. I had a little romantic thing with [Ivan Hall] and that was great," Kendall acknowledged.
"But ultimately, seeing your ex in the place where you fell in love initially, it was very difficult for me, and I didn't anticipate that at all. I didn't think I would be as emotional. I didn't think that it would affect me. I thought we'd be cool, [we'd be] friends. But it didn't happen."
Overall, despite the many tears she had shed during that time, Kendall said she had "fun" on Bachelor in Paradise 7.
"I felt like it was a positive experience," she concluded.
Back in early October 2021, Joe told Us that Kendall meeting him on the platform on the beach prior to his marriage proposal to Serena was "a little confusing."
Joe criticized the move and said, "The timing, I would say, wasn't the best. I was just really focused on Serena and getting to that moment. I had a ring in my back pocket. So it was more like, 'Okay, I get that you're here, you know, I wish you the best, but it's not the time. Now is not the time.'"
Once Serena joined Joe on the beach ecstatic about what was to come, Joe had to break the news to her first -- before opening up his heart -- that he just had another run-in with Kendall.
"I definitely feel the same way as Joe," Serena explained to the magazine of Kendall showing up right before she got engaged to Joe.
But both Joe and Serena wished Kendall well at the time and hoped she would find happiness.
"We're just happy to focus on our relationship now and kind of keep those special moments between us and keep them private and special in their own way," Serena said.
Serena and Joe are still engaged today and just moved to New York City together. They are in the beginning stage of planning their wedding.
And Kendall has moved on with her boyfriend Mitch, an aerospace engineer whom she met through mutual friends in December 2021.
Mitch asked Kendall to be his girlfriend on Valentine's Day, and Kendall went public with their romance via Instagram in April and revealed she's in love.
Kendall first competed for Arie Luyendyk Jr.'s heart on The Bachelor's 22nd season in 2018, and then she met and fell in love with Joe on Bachelor in Paradise's fifth season that same year.
Kendall and Joe announced their breakup in 2020 after moving in together in Los Angeles in April 2019.
It made sense for Joe to live in L.A. for at least a period of time because he competed on Season 27 of Dancing with the Stars in Fall 2018.
The pair attempted to remain friends after calling it quits, but Kendall explained their breakup was difficult for her because they never fell out of love -- it was logistics that broke them apart, meaning Kendall wanted to continue living in Los Angeles, CA, and Joe desired moving back to his hometown of Chicago, IL.
When Kendall appeared on Bachelor in Paradise's seventh season, she told Joe the following: "It's difficult for me to not have you be a part of my life. I do want you in my life... in some capacity, and it's hard to not have that."
"You try to move on, but for some reason," she continued, "it doesn't feel right and it's hard to... At first, I was absolutely terrified of coming."
Kendall told the cameras that she still loved Joe and hoped he still had love for her.
"Your thing was that you didn't want to move anywhere for a man... I should've been more than just 'a man' at that point, and we could've tried it," Joe told Kendall after complaining about how she wasn't even willing to try out Chicago for a little bit.
Joe admitted he felt "confused" upon seeing Kendall again and their reunion was "going to be a problem."
"I don't know if I still love Kendall. I'm telling you the truth... I have something going on with Serena that I don't want to just throw away. I don't. This is messy. I need to figure out what to do," Joe lamented in a confessional.
Joe ultimately determined he wanted to continuing pursuing his romance with Serena, even though Kendall would begin dating other men on the same beach.
Joe wasn't exactly sure what Kendall's intentions were, but he assured Serena -- who broke up with Matt James on The Bachelor's 25th season after her hometown date -- that she was his "main priority."
"If she really wanted me back," Joe said of Kendall on Bachelor in Paradise, "she should have told me before I got here and before I started this. Because I really, really loved her."
Kendall ultimately decided to leave the show because she said it was too difficult to watch Joe with Serena and her feelings for Joe registered as painful realizations that she wasn't over him. She didn't want to sacrifice her mental and emotional well-being to stay on the show.
Kendall said on a September 2021 episode of the "Talking It Out with Bachelor Nation" podcast that she just went on the summer spinoff to find closure with Joe and had no intention of getting back together with him.