Week three of Rachel Recchia and Gabby Windey’s journeys brought tears for both Bachelorettes.
During the Monday, July 25, episode of the ABC series, the flight instructor went on the first one-on-one date, getting dressed up (with the help of Karamo Brown) with Zach for a “movie premiere.” The film ended up being Rachel and Zach’s home movies and they got emotional as they learned about each other’s families — including the fact that both of their dads brought them to watch planes take off when they were kids. Zach got the rose and admitted he was already “falling” for Rachel.
“I think Rachel could be my future wife. This is crazy to say out loud and actually think about — considering how early it is — but it’s very real, what’s going on. It’s very real,” he told the cameras. “I’m falling for her. I’m falling for her really, really hard.”
Gabby, meanwhile, made a surprise visit to see the men at the mansion but was left feeling “upset” and “sad” after the contestants seemed more interested in throwing around the football than getting to know her. Things briefly turned around during her one-on-one date with Erich — and her grandpa John. While the day portion included bowling — and a set-up for grandpa — Gabby broke down again during the night portion.
“Growing up, my mom … we’re estranged. I don’t have a relationship with her,” the ICU nurse told Erich after he opened up about how much he admires his parents’ partnership. “She definitely did the best she could, but the second I moved out of the house, she, like, wiped her hands clean. … I’ll, maybe, never know what it’s like to have a mother’s love.”
She subsequently walked away for a break and during a chat with producers, Gabby admitted that she’s “terrified”: “Am I too broken for anyone to love? … People, like, want to see the Rachels [as the Bachelorette] because she’s easier. I’m too complicated. It’s, like, I’m messy.”
After admitting her fears to Erich, he comforted her and she gave him the rose.
During the group date — a.k.a the “19 on two date” — the men participated in a series of themed photo shoots. During the night portion, Tyler, Hayden and Jacob made their intentions clear to Gabby that they only wanted to pursue Rachel, bringing back Gabby’s fears.
“Hayden tells me he feels his morals more aligned with Rachel and being called ‘rough around the edges,’ like, definitely hurts,” she explained. “I think these guys coming to me and saying that because I’m different they don’t want to be with me is validating that, maybe, I’m too much for people.”
Rachel, for her part, had an “amazing” night and gave her rose to Aven for making her feel “seen” and “safe.” Gabby subsequently told the men that it’s been a hard week and she didn’t feel comfortable handing out a rose. When she filled in Rachel, she comforted her and told her that insulting one Bachelorette isn’t going to help their suitors with the other.
After Gabby and Rachel canceled the cocktail party, the men learned that whoever they accept a rose from at the rose ceremony is the journey they will continue on for the remainder of the season. Termayne is the first to “decline” a rose from Rachel, noting he has a stronger connection with Gabby. He then gets “back in line” and waits to see if Gabby wants to pursue him. As a result, Jesse Palmer removes the rose from Rachel’s pile. The same thing happens with Alec and Meatball, causing Gabby and Rachel to take a break.
“This was so embarrassing and public,” Rachel told Gabby after saying she felt rejected. “This was supposed to be us taking the power back, we literally handed it right back to all of them. Now I look stupid to everyone who has my rose. … If I am rejected one more time, I am ready to walk out and leave. I’m ready to be done, go home to Florida.”
The Bachelorette airs on ABC Mondays at 8 p.m. ET. Scroll through to see which men accepted a rose from Gabby and which men accepted a rose from Rachel.