'The Bachelorette' alum Emily Maynard on Brad Womack split: I take a lot of the blame for it, I didn't have the maturity
By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 07/21/2020
The Bachelorette alum Emily Maynard says she takes a lot of the responsibility for her breakup with former The Bachelor star Brad Womack because she was young and somewhat immature when they got engaged.
Emily -- who competed on Season 15 of The Bachelor, Brad's season, before starring on Season 8 of The Bachelorette -- conducted a videochat with franchise host Chris Harrison during Monday night's episode of The Bachelor: The Greatest Seasons -- Ever!.
After rejecting both of his Final 2 bachelorettes on The Bachelor's eleventh edition, Brad fell head over heels for Emily on The Bachelor's fifteenth season when he got a second chance at finding the woman of his dreams on reality TV.
Harrison acknowledged although Emily's romance didn't work out with Brad, they had "a great love story" at first.
"Yeah it was," Emily agreed. "It didn't last, but so long."
"But I take a lot of the blame for that too. I mean, I was 24 and I'm 34 now. I didn't have the maturity to deal with all of that, and it was really hard."
Emily insisted she and Brad "both put in a lot of work" into their long-distance relationship prior to announcing their split. Emily was living in Charlotte, NC, with her young daughter Ricki from a previous relationship, while Brad lived and worked in Austin, TX.
"You know, [we were] traveling back and forth and all of that," Emily explained. "But I think we both knew, like, 'This is just not fun anymore. This is just not going to work.'"
Emily said she hasn't seen or talked to Brad recently, except when he sent her a text after she got married to Tyler Johnson in June 2014. She is now a mother of four children.
In addition to Ricki, now 15, she welcomed three kids with Tyler -- sons Gibson, Gatlin and Jennings.
"[Brad] just told me how happy he was for me," Emily revealed of the text message. "And, you know, he's so respectful. Like, I have nothing but good words to say about Brad. You know, it all works out."
Emily said, in fact, it seems like "a lifetime ago" that the show filmed nearly a decade ago.
"I look at the pictures of it and it doesn't even look like me anymore -- thanks a lot, four kids!... But it was so much fun," Emily shared, adding that she had fully expected Brad to choose someone at the Final Rose Ceremony given he had dumped both DeAnna Pappas and Jenni Croft on Season 11 of The Bachelor.
While Emily said Brad is a gentleman and she has nothing but nice things to say about him, when the pair called off their engagement in 2011, Brad told the press at the time he had "dodged a bullet."
Brad, however, was singing a different tune during his own appearance on Monday night's The Bachelor: The Greatest Seasons -- Ever! special.
"I did fall in love with Emily. The proposal was more than genuine," Brad told Harrison, adding that he did not feel pressure to propose marriage on The Bachelor 15 just because he walked away from his first go as the Bachelor alone and single.
"I was looking at the time at who I thought was the woman of my dreams, and so I was living out my fairy tale."
Brad also had trouble pinpointing exactly what went wrong with Emily and why their relationship ended.
"Good question because I fell hard for her. I think at the end of the day, we were just two different people," Brad admitted.
"You get back in normal life and you start realizing that maybe we want different things. When all of this is said and done and the show is gone, what do we actually want? And nothing is right or wrong, but we just had different ideas of what the future looked like."
Brad, however, confessed his breakup with Emily after getting engaged was "brutal."
"I did fall in love with her very, very quickly and very deeply. And I was broken over it for a long time," Brad explained.
"And then of course, not only did we break up, but you guys did me the favor of having her be the Bachelorette. So thanks for nothing! So not only was my heart broken but then there's the announcement she's going to be the Bachelorette every Monday night on national television."
Brad confirmed he did not watch Emily's season of The Bachelorette and they didn't stay in touch after calling it quits on their romance.
"No, I'm very respectful of boundaries. Don't get me wrong -- after we broke up, I'm sure I called her 200 times and it went straight to voicemail, but you know, after all that died down and once I heard she was dating somebody, I don't cross those boundaries, man. I think we both moved on," Brad insisted.
Brad is now seriously dating Jena Mays, whom he met at the gym and began dating in 2017.
In an Instagram posting she made after the pair's appearance on The Bachelor: The Greatest Seasons -- Ever! aired, Jena stated she and Brad have been dating "a little over 3 years."
"I am very pleased to say I am very much in love, so I spend a lot of time with my new lady friend," Brad gushed to Harrison.
"We've been together for a while and, yes, I'm very happy and I hope she is too. And I would love to introduce her to you, if you don't mind."
Emily got engaged three times before her final engagement to Tyler stuck and the couple got married. She was previously engaged to the late pro racing driver Ricky Hendrick, Brad, and then her The Bachelorette Season 8 winner Jef Holm.