Kaitlyn Bristowe has revealed her fears over fan reaction following her split from fiancé Jason Tartick and said how social media discussions about it have been “affecting [her] mental health so much.” The former Bachelorette said on her Tuesday, August 8, “Off the Vine” podcast that she’s trying to deal with concerns that fans are blaming her for their breakup.

“Even though I have the logistics side of my brain that goes, ‘These people have their own things going on. They have their own traumas, they have their own dark places, they’re looking to me for an escape, like, this isn’t reality. You have to give yourself time first before you give strangers on the internet time, no matter how much you think they’re your community or family,” Kaitlyn, 38, explained to marriage and family therapist Jenny Wise Black.

She continued, “But then my other side goes, ‘Oh, my gosh, they hate me. I’m gonna lose all the support, and people are judging me. And they think it’s just all me and it’s my fault.’ And my brain is, like, ‘Here’s the logic of everything. And then here’s the emotion,’ and I am finding myself in the middle of that.”

The former reality star also lamented how being so open and public about her romance with Jason, 34, made their split even harder. “I’m going through a breakup with someone I was engaged to. Now, we both are public figures, we both came from the same show, we have all these followers who we’ve let in. And we’ve invited them into our lives and our relationship and our home. And what we’re doing morning, afternoon, night — it’s become part of, like, business,” Kaitlyn revealed.

Kaitlyn starred as the lead on season 11 of The Bachelorette, getting engaged to Shawn Booth. The pair broke up after three years together in November 2018. Two months later, she met Jason, who appeared on season 14 of The Bachelorette, when he was a guest on her podcast, and they soon began dating. The duo made their romance Instagram official on Valentine’s Day 2019. By that June, Kaitlyn and Jason had moved in together.

'Bachelor' Stars With Coronavirus: Jason Tartick and Kaitlyn Bristowe
Courtesy Kaitlyn Bristowe/Instagram

Jason proposed to Kaitlyn on May 10, 2021, giving her a gorgeous 5-carat, oval-shaped diamond set on a gold band. She later gushed, “It was everything I could have asked for. The words that came out of his mouth were insanely beautiful. We’ve never locked eyes like that in our lives. We were holding hands, so intense, and I was listening to his every word but still blacked out.”

Fans became concerned about the couple’s relationship status in July 2023 when they took separate vacations and Kaitlyn was photographed not wearing her engagement ring. The pair revealed their split on August 6 in a joint statement posted to Instagram.

“After sharing the news with family and close friends first, and taking the time to properly process it ourselves, we are saddened with heavy hearts to share that we have decided to end our engagement,” Kaitlyn and Jason began. “We are thankful for all of you who gave us the time and space to process this life altering decision as there are many emotions and changes to navigate.”

“Continuing our friendship is incredibly important to both of us. We feel grateful to be ending our engagement with love and respect for each other,” the pair wrote. “It’s heartbreaking and sad to say goodbye, but our care and admiration for one another will never die.”

“Moving forward we will always have that level of support for each other,” they concluded. “We don’t know what the future holds so please try to hold space for us in your hearts.”

Hours after sharing the post, Jason revealed his heartbreak over the split, sharing emotional Instagram Story posts. He thanked Kaitlyn for her “love and support over the years,” while adding, “I will forever be grateful for this person that was brought into my life.”

The “Trading Secrets” podcast host concluded his series of posts by admitting he was “beyond heart broken. Please be kind as we go through our individual journeys to heal,” he added, sharing a snapshot of him kissing his former fiancée’s forehead.