The Bachelor couple Joey Graziadei and Kelsey Anderson have explained how Leslie Fhima's warning about potential heartbreak impacted the couple's relationship towards the end of filming.

After Leslie was shown meeting with Kelsey before Fantasy Suites on The Bachelor's March 11 episode, Leslie faced backlash for planting a seed of doubt in Kelsey's mind about whether she was going to have a future with Joey.


Leslie's warning that Kelsey should brace herself for the possibility of getting dumped resulted in Kelsey appearing to spiral during overnight dates and leaving a cryptic "we need to talk" note in Joey's hotel door in Mexico that shook Joey to his core.

"I'm sure Leslie came from a place of love, but putting that doubt in Kelsey's head was so uncalled for," one X user wrote at the time.

Kelsey and Joey dished about Leslie's controversial The Bachelor visit during the March 26 episode of the "Bachelor Happy Hour" podcast.

"I think Leslie was just trying to give me advice from where she was coming from with her experience and from her side of things," Kelsey told the podcast's co-hosts Joe Amabile and Serena Pitt.

Leslie finished as Gerry Turner's runner-up on The Golden Bachelor, which aired last year.

Leslie was 100 percent sure that Gerry was going to pick her -- and most likely propose marriage to her -- after their Fantasy Suite date on The Golden Bachelor, but Gerry blindsided and dumped her in her hotel room prior to the Final Rose Ceremony.

Gerry went on to get engaged to his The Golden Bachelor winner Theresa Nist, and the pair got married for a live televised special on ABC in early January.

Kelsey admitted that she took Leslie's warning "with a grain of salt," adding, "There was obviously more to the conversation, but people always focus on the negative."

Kelsey said she and Leslie had "a great conversation" in which they talked about "going through similar life experiences."

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Kelsey shared of Gerry's ex, "She gave me a lot of great advice, but yeah, I just took it with a grain of salt where she was saying, 'Guard your heart.' And I kind of [already] was to an extent through this process. I was very optimistic but I never felt like I was guaranteed anything."

Kelsey insisted that's how she "continued to go through" the process, with that positive mindset.

"Regardless of what [Leslie] was telling me, I just kept going with how I was," Kelsey said with a laugh.

And it paid off, because at the Final Rose Ceremony, Joey proposed marriage to Kelsey and the couple got engaged in Tulum, Mexico.

When asked if Leslie's words changed how she felt or how she approached The Bachelor process at all, Kelsey recalled, "I think that the closer you get towards the end, and you feel all those real feelings, you're going to be anxious regardless."

Kelsey said even if Leslie hadn't met with her for a conversation, she probably "would've been anxious regardless" going into the final weeks of the show.

Now that Joey has had the chance to watch The Bachelor back on TV, he believes that Kelsey explained the situation well.

"It was more like Leslie was trying to explain where she was coming from. We did have more talks about that, not only at our dinner, but also through overnights," Joey explained.

"[Kelsey and I] talked through it. It definitely heightened her feelings of where she was at, but I also think it was important because you have to go through that point of thinking, like, 'Okay, there is doubt... but do I still want to push forward?'"

Joey said Kelsey had to ask herself if their relationship was "something she was willing to fight for," even though she naturally had doubt in her mind about being picked as his winner.

"I think... that's the positive it brought out," Joey said of Leslie and Kelsey's talk.

"[Kelsey] did feel the doubt, and she did realize the position she was in, but she knew there was something stronger to fight for and to get to the end. I think that's what kind of made us stronger through it."

Joey elaborated, "Leslie did the right thing. It's a tough position to be in... It's important to be realistic, and I think Leslie was trying to make sure that Kelsey was being realistic."

Joey recalled Leslie sharing how she had gotten caught up in a fairy tale with Gerry and was therefore completely crushed to leave alone and single in the end. Leslie admittedly wasn't realistic at all about the chance Gerry could end up picking another woman.

"It's totally understandable," Joey concluded.

Kelsey previously defended Leslie in a post via Instagram Stories.

Kelsey wrote after the Fantasy Suites episode aired, "Leslie helped me realize regardless the outcome, I will be okay. I am so thankful for our talk. Please, please be kind."

When Kelsey chatted with Leslie on The Bachelor's 28th season, Joey's other bachelorettes got to meet with The Golden Bachelor alums as well.

Daisy Kent talked to Sandra Mason, and Rachel Nance chatted with Susan Noles.

Sandra and Susan essentially advised Daisy and Rachel to keep their hearts wide open and remain vulnerable with The Bachelor star, but Leslie's advice served as more of a warning to Kelsey, who, at that point, was already wildly "in love" with Joey.

Leslie shared with Kelsey of her time on The Golden Bachelor, "I wish I wouldn't have felt so confident, because then I was devastated."

Leslie said her journey ended in a "very, very sad" manner because she was totally in love with Gerry.

"And I would not wish that on my worst enemy to be honest, where I was confident, and then that was it," Leslie told Kelsey.

"And I would say just always have something in the back of your head that you might not be it. And then if you're it, it's amazing. And if you're not, you have a little bit of protection."

Kelsey still had a wonderful Fantasy Suite date with Joey, but her mindset apparently began to change once it was over and done with.

Kelsey -- who had once seemed elated and at ease about her relationship with Joey -- suggested that Leslie's words of wisdom made her get inside her head and wonder if she was going to end up totally crushed at the end of the process.

The reality apparently sank in for Kelsey that Joey may ultimately choose Daisy or Rachel, and she admitted that she'd probably never be able to recover from a breakup with The Bachelor star.

Kelsey was therefore determined to speak with Joey before the Rose Ceremony that was going to take place after Fantasy Suites, and so she left Joey the "we need to talk note" when she couldn't find him to speak face to face.

Joey became flustered and upset when he read the note because he didn't understand what it was about at all. Joey broke down into tears, wondering if something was wrong or if Kelsey was going to leave him.


Joey called the situation with Kelsey his "worst nightmare coming true," and he added, "I am over giving everything I can and feeling like they're not choosing me!"

However, Kelsey just ended up telling Joey that she really wanted to meet his family and she always missed him when they were apart. The lack of drama was actually a letdown for many The Bachelor viewers.

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About The Author: Elizabeth Kwiatkowski
Elizabeth Kwiatkowski is Associate Editor of Reality TV World and has been covering the reality TV genre for more than a decade.