Instead of Peter, a 31-year-old personal trainer and business owner from Madison, WI, Rachel selected Bryan Abasolo, a 37-year-old chiropractor from Miami, FL, at the end of her journey to find love. Eric Bigger placed third.
While Rachel and Bryan got engaged and claim to be living happily-ever-after, Peter left the show completely brokenhearted. He just wasn't ready to propose to Rachel -- although he desperately wanted to continue their relationship in the real world -- and she had made it very clear she wasn't going to conclude The Bachelorette process with just a boyfriend.
In a Tuesday phone interview, Peter talked to Reality TV World about Rachel's final decision and the pair's live reunion. Below is what he had to say. Be sure to check back with Reality TV World soon for more from the call.
Reality TV World: You told Rachel and Chris Harrison last night that you felt "attacked" during the live portion of the finale, but you couldn't find the words to explain yourself. Now that you've had time to reflect on everything, can you articulate what you meant by that? It sounds like the reunion didn't go as you had anticipated?
Peter Kraus: I haven't had much reflection time, even still. It's been kind of a whirlwind since then with family and friends and people, really, from everywhere reaching out and trying to talk.
So, processing has been a little delayed, but in the moment, I definitely felt like she was coming at me a little bit with, I think, hurt more than anything. I don't think it was anger; I don't think it was malice.
I think she was just as emotional as I was, and I can't speak for her, but that's what it felt like. I think the way we processed our emotions in that moment was just a little different.
When I said I felt "attacked," I didn't know how to explain it. I still don't really know how to explain it. I just know that it didn't feel comfortable or welcoming in the way that she was talking to me. I had to say something, but I needed to just bite my tongue a little bit after that.
Reality TV World: It seemed as if you didn't really like Bryan on the show, that you weren't his biggest fan. Could you elaborate on why? Did Bryan ever say anything in particular that rubbed you the wrong way or did you paint him in a certain light because of his background, just being from Miami, and such?
Peter Kraus: The relationship I had with Bryan was never one of friendship, you know, we never really talked directly to each other. But I watched how he interacted with other guys when we had our group chats amongst the guys. He just wasn't the kind of guy I would hang out with.
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Maybe it's because I got along with so many other guys so well and we all became good friends pretty early on, even to the point where those are some of my best friends for life, I think, at this point. [Bryan] didn't fit into that group that we were developing.
And I developed some really, really serious feelings for Rachel, and seeing her with him hurt me a bit, because if I couldn't be friends with him, why would she want to be with him? So I think I took it personally in a way that I shouldn't have, and I took it out on him because of it.
Reality TV World: You wrote in your ABC bio at the beginning of the season that you were looking at engagement rings after just three months for your ex-girlfriend of two years, but you thought a proposal to Rachel after a similar amount of time was very far-fetched. Looking back, do you think you were hesitating because something was missing with Rachel?
Peter Kraus: Honestly, there was nothing missing with Rachel, and that's part of the thing that scared me. When I was talking to her family and her brother-in-law, specifically, I was saying that there were no red flags -- and there weren't.
There was nothing I saw that was unattractive or negative about Rachel and our relationship. And in real life, there's lots of negativity and hardships, and I need to know how someone is going to respond in that type of situation and whether they are going to make an educated decision in our life moving forward.
Reality TV World: Do you think your last relationship affected your outlook on proposing, or was it more a matter of how relatively little time you got to spend with Rachel during the filming process?
Peter Kraus: I don't think my relationship in the past in which I was looking at rings at Month 3 [had any impact]. And I was just looking at rings, I wasn't getting down on my knee in three months. I was just looking at rings, which was going to take several months thereafter [to actually propose].
But that was after being with that person every single day and talking to that person hours and hours a day, and spending nights -- night after night with each other. And with Rachel, in essence, I had four or five dates at that point.
I also felt very uncomfortable at times during some of those dates because I don't feel very comfortable in front of the camera at times. It was hard to get in that comfort zone whole-heartedly occasionally in that process. So they were very different situations between my past relationship and this one with Rachel.