Arie Luyendyk Jr. and Lauren Burnham Enjoy First Date Since Engagement

Anna Rumer


Arie Luyendyk Jr. and fiancée Lauren Burnham are finally stepping out together as a couple after their shocking and controversial end to The Bachelor on Monday.

Wednesday, the couple stepped out hand-in-hand in New York City for their first official public date night at high end Japanese restaurant Megu.

Lauren shared a snapshot from the couple's date on her Instagram story, captioning it, “First public date with my love [Arie Jr.].”

Luyendyk also posted a boomerang of Lauren blowing a kiss as during the evening.

The couple has been the subject of a lot of hatred from Bachelor Nation after the most controversial season in recent history.

Luyendyk had originally proposed to Becca Kufrin in the finale of the show, but less than two months later had a change of heart, dumping Becca on national television to pursue a relationship with Burnham, proposing to her on live television Tuesday night during the two-hour After the Final Rose special.

And while Luyendyk has been raked over the coals for blindsiding Becca with cameras, Lauren is standing by her man's side.

“I totally respect his decision to follow his heart,” she told PEOPLE this week. “I don’t blame him for it, and I think it’s made us stronger in the end. It was worth risking getting hurt again to see where it could go. We’ve had a lot of conversations about it, and I know he won’t change his mind again.”

“It makes things easier for me knowing that he was able to be with Becca outside of this experience and he still knew that wasn’t what he wanted,” she added. “It gives me confidence in our relationship knowing that he truly wants to be with me and he took this huge risk to make it happen.”

Luyendyk has also been defending his decision to televise the breakup in full and unedited, tying his decision to Becca being named the next Bachelorette.

“I really wanted everyone to know that this was on me,” Luyendyk said on Good Morning America on Wednesday. “It was my fault and I felt like filming that would let people know that, that if there were any questions on the breakup, that those would be squashed if they saw the breakup.”

He added, “Honestly, I wanted [for] her that opportunity to be the potential Bachelorette. I hope I gave her that closure. I’m very happy for her. I’m happy that she’s going to be able to find love through the show.”

The Bachelorette premieres May 28 on ABC.

Photo credit: ABC

Latest News