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Bachelor Nation’s Michelle Young Gives Ex Brandon Jones Her Blessing On His Engagement and Talks Dating (Exclusive)

“I am very happy with Brandon and Serene getting engaged,” Michelle tells Celeb Secrets. 

INGLEWOOD, CALIFORNIA - DECEMBER 02: Michelle Young attends iHeartRadio 102.7 KIIS FM's Jingle Ball 2022 Presented by Capital One at The Kia Forum on December 02, 2022 in Inglewood, California. (Photo by Jesse Grant/Getty Images for iHeartRadio)

It’s been nearly a year since Bachelorette star Michelle Young walked away from Season 18 with a fiancé and rock on her finger. The school teacher turned reality star gave her final rose to Nayte Olukoya, a Texas-based account executive. 

During the season finale and “After the Finale Rose” special, the lovebirds were gifted with a generous check of $200,000 to go towards a down payment on a house in Minnesota. Before making any moves, Olukoya called off the engagement and left Young with a broken heart

Although the breakup was difficult to overcome, Young told Celeb Secrets that she mustered up the courage and confidence to break into the Los Angeles dating scene. 

“It’s been really weird getting back out there, but it’s been exciting at the same time,” Young told CS host Juliet Schroder backstage at the 102.7 KIIS FM iHeartRadio Jingle Ball concert in Los Angeles earlier this month. “It’s also kind of nice because it’s at a slower pace,” she added with a smile. 


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Young denied to comment on how many dates she has been on since exiting the show or if she’s seeing one specific person. While navigating her new reality, Young watched the latest season of Bachelor in Paradise unfold. While several men from Young’s season appeared on the beach, frontrunner and ex-lover, Brandon Jones dropped to one knee. 

During the finale, Jones proposed to Serene Russell – an Oklahoma native. When the two first arrived in sunny Mexico – they did not waste time exploring or entertaining others contestants, as they only had eyes for each other. Shortly after the show, the fan-favorite couple began their life together in San Diego and started wedding planning. According to PEOPLE, the BIP alums are expected to tie the knot in 2024. 

Young pointed out that it was “awkward” to watch her ex-boyfriends intermingle with other women on the small screen. 

“It’s a lot to watch,” said Young referring to the recent season of BIP. “It wasn’t really weird watching Clayton’s season unfold because he went home partway. I knew him well, but not crazy well. But Paradise has been like ‘Michelle’s exes on the beach’…it’s weird.” 

Despite her wish-washy emotions, Young confidently declared that she was cheering for Jones and Russell from day one. 

“I am very happy with Brandon and Serene getting engaged,” said Young, full of enthusiasm. “They seem like a perfect fit. I’ve heard such good things about them. They seem like a strong couple. If I would’ve put my money in anybody, they’re going to make it. Fingers crossed.” 


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Young pointed out that she did not miss a beat, as she was required to watch Jones’ love story closely. The TV personality is the host of Apple Podcast Bachelor Happy Hour with Becca Kufrin. The former bachelorettes take TV junkies behind the scenes of the legendary mansion, share untold stories from their personal experiences, and dish on current seasons. 

Young recently stepped away from teaching. During her drama-free season, her strong passion for shaping young minds was pushed to the forefront. Although Young won’t be pursuing a career in education, she plans to give back to her community and utilize her powerful platform in more than one positive way. 

“I’m taking a year off from teaching,” she uttered. “I’m out of the classroom, but a lot of the things that I’m gonna be doing is with motivational speaking. It’s going to be kind of giving back, creating that brand of working with philanthropies. So, that’s my focus. It’s going to be something that touches my passion. I love fashion, I love beauty, I love that thing. But my biggest passion is working with kids,” she concluded. 

For more Bachelor Nation piping hot tea? Listen to Young’s hot takes on Apple Podcast. Would you watch your ex find love? Let us know by leaving a reaction below or by sending us a tweet @celebsecrets

For more coverage from the iHeartRadio Jingle Ball Tour, click here


Written by Tiffany Goldstein

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