'The Bachelorette': Michelle Young and Nayte Olukoya Just Broke Up

Another Bachelor couple bites the dust. On Friday, The Bachelorette star Michelle Young announced her split from Nayte Olukoya, the recipient of her final rose. As E! News pointed out, Young and Olukoya's split comes six months after their engagement played out on the season finale of The Bachelorette

Both Young and Olukoya, who fell in love during Season 18 of The Bachelorette, made statements about the breakup on their respective Instagram accounts. The former lead's message began, "I'm struggling to say that Nayte and I will be going our separate ways, but I stand with him in knowing the heaviness that is present in both of our hearts as this relationship has been very real for us." As she continued her statement, she addressed her former partner directly, writing, "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." 

"I will always acknowledge and appreciate the adventures, support, and growth both Nayte and this experience have brought me," Young added. "At the same time, I'm deeply hurting and will need time and space to work through this heartbreak." The former Bachelorette went on to express that navigating their relationship "in the public eye" wasn't "easy" for them, and it's a sentiment that Olukoya also shared in his own message to fans. 

"When we both started this journey, we were looking for our Soulmates. Our forever. Our best friends," his statement read. "However, as we grow and learn, we also realize that sometimes somebody that you hold dear to your heart isn't somebody that you're meant to spend the rest of your life with." Olukoya added, "Hearts are heavy, emotions are high, and we are dealing with this the best way we can... We genuinely fell in love, and we genuinely became each other's best friends. Michelle and I will always cheer each other on, but moving forward, we will be cheering from a distance."

The news of Young and Olukoya's split may have come as a shock to many fans, but there was some speculation about their relationship status leading up to their respective announcements. E! News noted that it's been speculated for some time that the pair may have split, as Young was seen without her engagement ring in a video that made the rounds in May. Although, the reality star quickly addressed the speculation by saying that her friend was "briefly" wearing the ring and called it "creepy" that the video surfaced in the first place.