If you meet in “Paradise,” sometimes you get married on “Paradise.” The Tolberts and the Waddells did, as did Krystal Nielson and Chris Randone, who met during season six. The entire cast of season six, which wrapped Tuesday night, attended Krystal and Chris’s wedding. And of course it was the backdrop for some of this season’s drama. As of the finale, here’s who left the beach hand in hand and who decided not to take their romance into the real world.
Demi Burnett and Kristian Taggerty: Engaged
Demi Burnett played the villain on Colton Underwood’s season of “The Bachelor,” but she’s been the star of “Paradise.” She quickly hit it off with Derek Peth, but couldn’t stop thinking about someone from home: Kristian Haggerty. About halfway through the season, the show’s host took Demi aside to reunite her with Kristian. Once Kristian was there, Demi was committed. “You kept coming to the forefront of my mind,” Demi told Kristian at the time. “I want to be with you.” Rather than leave together as a couple right away, Kristian joined the cast of “Paradise,” and the two became the franchise’s first same-sex couple. That creates a lot of pressure for them: This is Demi’s first relationship with a woman, and it’s unfolding on a national stage. Kristian has been patient and understanding, and the entire cast has welcomed her — even Derek. Though he was clearly hurt over their breakup, he recognized that he and Kristian have something strong in common: love and admiration for Demi. By the end of the season, Demi was in love with Kristian but unsure she deserved her. “Why would someone that amazing want to be with me?,” Demi says shortly before their final rose. Well, Kristian does want to be with Demi. “I came here to find myself, but I found myself in you,” Demi said right before she got down on one knee. Kristian kneeled, too, so that when Demi asked “Will you marry me?," it was not one person looking up at the other, but both of them on the same level.
Hannah Godwin and Dylan Barbour: Engaged
From day one, Dylan Barbour was all in with Hannah Godwin. It just took Hannah a little while to catch up. She started out this season part of the Blake Horstmann “love pentagon.” (Blake had even traveled to Birmingham, Ala., where Hannah lives, before “Paradise,” to meet her.) But once Hannah chose Dylan, they were inseparable — not getting much screen time because they were so busy making out, there wasn’t much else to film. In their final “Paradise” conversation, Hannah told Dylan she was ready to make him her priority, but she was scared — having been burned in the past. (Colton Underwood dumped her near the end of his season as “The Bachelor.”) Still, when Dylan asked Hannah if she trusted him — “a million perfect,” she responded. And then he got down on one knee with a Neil Lane diamond and asked her to marry him. These two are so young. They’re both 24. And yet, they’re engaged — and they seem happy.
Katie Morton and Chris Bukowski: Murky
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As you’ve seen..It’s been the furthest from easy. From the decision to take the leap onto the beach, navigating what was real and staying true to myself, and my world that spun out afterward. None of it has been a walk in the park. BUT I’ve learned, a lot. I’ve learned to be more direct, how to challenge myself and others, I’ve learned that I’m empathetic to a fault, that love languages are so important to understanding others, that self sabotage can be found in many forms, and BOY have I learned what patience looks like. But most of all, I’ve learned that happiness isn’t something to look for in your partner. Your partner can make you laugh but your partner is not responsible for your happiness. Happiness is found within and sharing that with each other is what lights up a room! Communication is the link to everything, which is something we sure did LACK in paradise and shortly after. It took us a few months to really get our bearings (especially with some exceptional and unexpected challenges). I know none of you will truly understand why things are the way they are but I ask that you trust me and support me as I navigate this new world of mine. Because I’m happy with me and we are finally happy with us. We have grown so much in our friendship and now in our relationship since that day. Like I said to both of our parents and I will say to you- I can’t promise you this relationship will be perfect (it won’t be/ it isn’t) and I can’t promise we will last forever. Honestly, some relationships don’t last after 20 years and some do, that’s life. But what I can promise you is that I take this seriously, won’t lose myself, I will always try my best, I will always keep it real, and we will have each other’s backs. Thank you for following us through this journey of hope, faith, all of the next phases of life and more importantly - love ♥️ cheers to an effing INSANE adventure
Chris has been on more “Bachelor" shows than anyone else (seven!). His opener on this season of “Paradise” involved him ambling down the beach with a walker. (He’s 32, but in “Bachelor” years, that’s senior citizen status.) Chris has been through the “Bachelor” gantlet so many times that he’s more careful about when he says “I love you” or makes commitments. Because of his trepidation to vocalize his feelings through the season, Katie often felt unsure of their relationship. As they met on the beach for their final rose, Chris appeared quite certain of his feelings. “You make me feel calm, comfortable. You make me feel like myself,” he said to Katie. Katie started crying before “Will you marry me?” was even out of his mouth. She said yes. But by the time of the reunion show, Katie wasn’t wearing her engagement ring and admitted that she’s been trying much harder in the relationship than Chris has. “You tell other people that you love me,” she told him, “but you don’t act like it toward me.” It seemed like they were about to break up — even fighting on camera but off stage. The last we see of them Katie is near tears, venting in a golf cart, and Chris walks off, alone. After Tuesday’s reunion episode aired, however, Katie and Chris both posted Instagram photos and captions of them looking happier and appearing as if they’re still together.
Clay Harbor and Nicole Lopez-Alvar: No longer together
This season of “Paradise,” many contestants’ pasts were present with them on the beach: Blake Horstmann hooked up with several contestants prior to the show, which made his on-show courtship ... a bit more complicated. Clay had one of his exes, Angela Amezcua, literally walk onto the beach — first as a bridesmaid in Chris and Krystal’s wedding and then as a fellow contestant in “Paradise.” It was a little awkward. At the wedding, Angela questioned Clay’s readiness to be on the show, just a few months after their breakup. And Nicole Lopez-Alvar, Clay’s current girlfriend, questioned whether he was really over his ex. (Clay assured her that he was.) Once they resolved that, Clay and Nicole seemed to grow even stronger. But by the end of “Paradise,” Clay confessed that he wasn’t in love with Nicole yet, and that wasn’t enough for her. “I’m sorry, Clay. I have to go,” Nicole said as she abruptly left the beach. Though neither Nicole nor Clay appeared on the “Paradise” reunion that aired Tuesday, Clay tweeted that they were there -- their segment just got cut.
Yes I was at the reunion they chose not to show my convo with Nicole. I basically explained why I didn’t think we were far enough along to get engaged and that I really did want to continue to date and wished her luck with her new relationship. #didntmissmuch— Clay Harbor (@clayharbs82) September 18, 2019
Tayshia Adams and John Paul Jones: In a relationship
Tayshia and John Paul Jones are that couple you never would have expected, and yet somehow they work. On the beach, he recited one of Romeo’s monologues as a way of showing that he cared. (His surfer twang gave Shakespeare a cadence we’d never heard before, and viewers loved it.) When Tayshia told JPJ that she never went to her high school prom, he threw her one on the beach. It was all very sweet, but when JPJ told Tayshia that he loved her and could see himself marrying and having a family with her, she broke it off. She just wasn’t as far along as he was, and they said goodbye in tears. However, by the reunion show, Tayshia admitted that she had second thoughts — such strong ones that she traveled to St. Michaels, Md., where JPJ lives, to ask if they could give it another shot. And of course, there are cameras capturing everything. JPJ was surprised but delighted. “Will you be my girlfriend?,” he asked her. “Yes I will!” she responded gleefully.
Dean Unglert and Caelynn Miller-Keyes: In a relationship
The biggest surprise of this entire season might be that Dean Unglert is in a relationship. Dean lives in a van and left “Paradise” because he didn’t think a relationship with Caelynn would work in the real world. (He’s also had his love triangles on past seasons of “Paradise,” and has generally come off as a commitment-phobe.) Caelynn was devastated — especially as he broke up with Caelynn on her birthday! After Dean left, Caelynn rebounded with Connor Saeli and seemed happy. However, a few episodes later, Dean changes his mind. He hasn’t been able to stop thinking about Caelynn and comes back to the beach with an unexpected proposition for her: Dean asks if she’ll leave the beach with him. And she does. They’re still together.