And now they have a ~ controversial ~ new nickname.
When Katie Thurston and John Hersey announced their romantic relationship, it was messy. TBH, that was kind of the point. Thurston made the big reveal on her 12th and final “Day of Messy,” after all. But since then, it seems like the couple has entered a new phase of their relationship, focused on damage control. On Nov. 26, Hersey posted a lengthy letter on Reddit to address the critics. And on Dec. 5, Thurston herself explained her relationship with Hersey — and how they really started dating — on TikTok.
Taking to the platform, Thurston shared a candid video of her and Hersey dancing at an event in San Diego on Dec. 2 with the caption, “Introducing @johnalexhersey.” The video was sweet, but the really interesting stuff went down in Thurston’s comments section. TikTok users did not hold back, asking the former Bachelorette exactly how she started dating Hersey — and if there was any overlap with her engagement to Blake Moynes.
Thurston’s replies shed a lot of light on her burgeoning relationship. When a user asked, “so did you fall in love before or after your engagement was called off,” Thurston replied, “Always loved him as my best friend. Then one day I looked at him and saw him differently. Like Cupid to the heart, I knew I was hit.” And she wanted her Instagram followers to know that, too. On her Instagram Stories, Thurston shared a series of comments and replies, putting (some of) the rumors around her and Hersey to rest.
Thurston also addressed a comment that asked her, “So were you not truly in love with Blake?” But this time, her answer was... evasive. “We were engaged for six months and slowly we both grew apart and realized we weren’t a good fit,” she wrote back. Um, so were they truly in love or not?
Another comment, asking her, “weren’t u also in love like 2 weeks ago,” received a similarly ambiguous answer. “Love comes in many forms. Love comes. Love goes. Love knows no boundaries. No rules,” she wrote. (Quick reminded, boundaries in love — and all relationships — are a good thing.)
Thurston also explained why she took her new relationship so public so soon after her breakup. “I’ve been pretty damn sad this entire year. This is the first time I’ve felt my truest and happiest self. I wasn’t going to hold back on being happy,” she explained.
Although Thurston did spend the time clarifying things in her comments section, it doesn’t seem like she is taking the criticism too hard. On Dec. 5, she shared a video of a Bachelor Nation brunch on her IG Stories. The guest list was full of the franchise’s “villains” (at least, based on their Bachelor reputations), including Chris Conran, Alana Milne, Tammy Ly, Anna Redman, and (of course) John Hersey.
Thurston’s caption? “Someone called us the controversial crew and I’m not mad [about it].” Despite the controversy (or controversies) surrounding this group, it seems like they aren’t suffering too much. Brunch in San Diego sounds pretty good to me, at least.
All in all, Thurston and Hersey’s ~journey~ seems like it’s off to a strong (if rocky) start. Plus, according to Thurston, Hersey has already met Aunt Lindsay and gotten her approval, so, really, what more could you want?