Alisha Dumps Jules On National TV: ‘This Is Not The Way I Wanted It To Go’
Thirty-six hours after dumping Jules and closing the “umbrella of ambiguity” on national television for good, Alisha was feeling “the best [she had] for six months”.
Speaking to 10 Daily over the phone, Alisha said she’s found it very hard to move beyond her Paradise experience knowing that she was going to have to relive it all when it aired.
“I just had an inkling that it was going to be as raw as the day it happened and it really was,” she said. “Around January particularly, I was just in such a bad place. I was almost gaslighting myself. I was like, ‘have you just oversold this whole thing to yourself’? Maybe it just wasn’t there at all.”
Happy with the Paradise Tell All, Alisha said that the “whole journey” -- and the last month especially -- have been “super challenging”, but she’s seeing the light at the end of the tunnel now.
“It’s also really helpful -- I’m really enjoying reading every article, or there’s the ‘Bachelor of Hearts’ podcast where they’re dissecting what’s happening,” she said, “and I’m loving reading other people’s perspectives as well because there’s still things that I want to learn and grow from and it’s helping that as well”.
Recalling that she’d worried that she “was crazy”, Alisha revealed that she’d had a panic attack worrying about how her relationship with Jules would play out on television.
“It’s been very comforting that everything I’ve watched on screen has been true to how I remember it,” she shared.
Alisha revealed that Jules flew up to Sydney to watch the episode of their first date together after the pair debated whether it would be “too emotional”.
“But I am really glad that he came up and watched it with me because I think that, had we not watched it together it would be something we would have looked back on and regretted,” she said.
Throughout our chat, the rawness of Alisha’s state was obvious, and all-too-familiar for anyone who’s ever been in a similar situation. Able to identify situations where she’d been directly hurt by his behaviour, she’d quickly walk her statement back if it seemed overly critical of him.
“I don’t think I have the capacity to be friends with him at the moment,” she said at one point, before quickly adding: “It doesn’t mean that we have any bad blood, I just think that I need to, for my own mental health, have a bit of a break.”
Asked whether Jules had been able to take any accountability for behaviour and offer an apology for things said that made her feel like their connection “wasn’t even relevant anymore” -- like when he openly spoke to her about wanting to pursue Tenille in front of her -- Alisha conceded: “I think he does struggle with that a little bit,” before adding: “He’s a very good person but he does have a tendency to put his foot in it, he doesn’t have a lot of tact or something”.
Calling Jules’ “soft indecisiveness” harder to watch back than the dramatic rose ceremony, Alisha revealed that “after one of those challenging episodes”, Jules rang her and said: “isn’t this great TV?”
“I was like, bye buddy. Not the time,” she recalled.
Still, until Monday night’s filming of the reunion, the pair had been talking everyday since returning from Paradise, which Alisha attributed to the hope that things would turn around.
“I tried to be pretty conclusive in the Paradise finale,” she said, “but then I went back to him in the outside world in the hopes that, without the cameras, without the crew, without the pressure of a commitment ceremony, that would change things”.
After drawing a line in the sand and calling it quits with Jules on stage, Alisha said that she “left the night” with “a lot of sadness in [her] heart”.
“This is not the way I wanted it to go,” she said. “In a perfect world, I would love to just be…” she paused. “I would love to be his friend.”
Still, before that can happen, Alisha is determined to take “stock of everything and move on from this experience”, reiterating: “I need a bit more space than I’ve had.”
As the cast all gave each other a big group hug after the Tell All, Alisha reflected on the moment between her and Jules.
“We didn’t really speak but I sort of felt there was this sadness between us. It was probably unspoken that it felt different to the other times. It was a bit of closure,” she mused.
“I need to stay strong and not get back into the same cycle but also he needs to…” she paused. “I think if he’s not prepared to give me anything more than friends then we need to give each other a little bit of space. I think it’ll be short term. Probably about the next six months, if not a year, I think we will have some space from each other and just sort of recalibrate our own lives and disconnect a bit”
Reiterating that there’s no “bad blood” between them, she added: “I think I said on our first date he’s one of the most incredible people I’ve ever met in my life.”
Aiming for a friendship down the track, Alisha said that she hopes one day the two will be able to “have a few beers together and watch a few episodes back and celebrate what a special time it was”.
She added: “We both recognise that we’re so bloody lucky to be involved in ‘Bachelor In Paradise’ and that it was particularly significant and special for us”.
With no regrets about any of her time in Paradise “because that’s life”, Alisha’s advice to anyone in a similar position is: “Don’t be too hard on yourself if you do go down the wrong path.”
As for whether she’d come back and do it all again, she’s less sure.
‘I wouldn’t do ‘Paradise’ again unless there was someone who I was like, ‘I need to meet this person’,” she said, before laughing. “I keep saying this in all my interviews but I want to play ‘Survivor’! I was like, ‘you know what, what a great way to get over heartbreak!’”