After she looked for love on Matt James’ season of The Bachelor, ABC picked the teacher to lead season 18 of The Bachelorette. During the December 2021 finale, fans watched Young accept a proposal from her first impression rose winner, Olukoya. The twosome subsequently planned to move to her native Minnesota and told Us Weekly that they hoped to wed in the “near future.”
“There’s just so many different layers of this process with the cameras and production, and it’s a very quick timeline. I was able to get the answers that I needed and once I was able to get those answers, my family really trusted me with that,” Young told Us in December 2021 of knowing Olukoya was The One. “And they also trust that one conversation — in this high-pressure moment — isn’t always going to necessarily point to somebody’s character. And so, they have welcomed Nayte with open arms and are so happy to have [him be] part of the family.”
Two months later, the pair confirmed to Us that he hadn’t made the move yet.
“We’re trying to be as smart as possible. We’re looking at different options. We’re definitely feeling it all out,” the Texas resident told Us in February 2022.
Young added at the time: “We like to make sure that we’re always making very calculated decisions, we’re always looking at all of our options. Yeah, it’ll happen.”
That April, the then-couple hadn’t made any more progress and were considering their romance long-distance.
“If we’re not hanging out, we’re texting [or] FaceTiming. We do a lot of movie nights like over FaceTime or Zoom. We’ve been making it work,” Young told Us. “But, he’s been in Minnesota for a little bit now so it’s been nice.”
Olukoya noted: “When we are together, we just spend time together, like, nonstop so it’s nice.”
It was less than two months later that they announced their breakup.
“I’m struggling to say that Nayte and I will be going out separate ways but I stand with him in knowing the heaviness that is present in both our hearts as this relationship has been very real for us,” Young wrote on June 17 via Instagram Stories. “To you, Nayte, you quickly became my best friend and the love I have for you is incredibly strong. I will never stop wanting to see you succeed.”
She continued: “I will always acknowledge and appreciate the adventures, support and growth both Nayte and this experience have brought me. At the same time, I’m deeply hurting and will need time and space to work through this heartbreak.”
Olukoya echoed her words. “Michelle and I are going to move forward separately. Hearts are heavy, emotions are high and we are dealing with this the best way we can,” he wrote. “When we both started this journey, we were looking for our soulmates. Our forever. Our best friends. However, as we grow and learn, we also really that sometimes somebody that you hold dear to your heart isn’t somebody you’re meant to spend the rest of your life with.”
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