Answering those burning questions — kind of. Michelle Young is still working through her split from Nayte Olukoya, giving her first interview less than one month after calling off her engagement.
When asked by Ben Higgins and Ashley Iaconetti how she’s coping, the 29-year-old Minnesota native said on the “Almost Famous” podcast that she has “good days” and “bad days” as she navigates the breakup, which happened the same month she announced she wouldn’t return to teaching in September.
“It’s been quite a transition, I would say just because this year, I decided to step away from the classroom this following school year just because I’ve been so burned out and just really wanting to, you know, get out of that survival mode,” Young said on Tuesday, July 5. “I kind of feel like life has taken this thing as like, ‘OK, challenge accepted … [now] deal with a breakup.’ It’s definitely not something that I planned to have to work through this summer. But I definitely have the understanding that, like, sometimes we have to work through things that we did not plan for or that were not in our life plans.”
The reality star added that she’s “leaning on my friends [and] family for support” at this time.
Young and Olukoya, who got engaged during the December 2021 finale of The Bachelorette, originally planned to move to her native Minnesota. However, they ended things before he took the leap.
“Nayte and I are very independent people. But at that same time, I really — I, personally — want to work toward different things, right? We’re in two different places. He’s in Austin, I’m in Minnesota, and long-distance is difficult,” she said after Iaconetti asked whether her decision to stop teaching was because she wanted to spend more time with her then-fiancé. “Having this summer off, and being able to step away from teaching, that would have happened, regardless of a relationship, regardless of influencing — whatever you want to call it — just because I really needed to take a breath out of teaching. But would that have resulted in spending more time with Nayte? Yeah.”
Young and Olukoya announced their decision to end their relationship in respective statements on June 17.
“When we both started this journey, we were looking for our soulmates. Our forever. Our best friends,” he wrote via Instagram Stories at the time. “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.”
Olukoya has since denied allegations of cheating, writing via the social media app on June 26: “Not every breakup needs to have someone to blame. Yes, many of you seem to paint me as a red flag/ f—k boy … But I’m actually a decent guy, and I only want to continue getting better. As we should all want for ourselves.”
Scroll through for more from Young on “Almost Famous”: