The Bachelorette Becca Kufrin finally stepped out with winner Garrett Yrigoyen, but the situation was anything but clear-cut and controversy free. Kufrin, who arrived to the ABC reality staple with her share of baggage (she was famously dumped on national television by fiancé Arie Luyendyk Jr.), and from the get-go, she couldn’t leave it at the door.
In the episode that aired Monday, Kufrin, 28, selected Yrigoyen, 29, over fellow finalist Blake Horstmann after a season fraught with controversy over Yrigoyen’s behavior on social media.
He "liked" racist and homophobic posts on Instagram, then used the platform in May to apologize for "a mindless double tap on Instagram" after he deleted his old account.
"I am sorry to those who I offended, and I also take full responsibility for my 'likes' on Instagram that were hurtful and offensive," he wrote. "garret_yrigs12 was my former Instagram handle and I decided to take it down and start fresh because I have learned an extremely valuable lesson and am taking steps to grow, become more educated, and be a better version of myself. I am not perfect, and I will never be anywhere close, but now I will always be more informed and aware of what I am liking and supporting, not just on Instagram, but in life."
The pair discussed the controversy with host Chris Harrison following his proposal to her.
"The Instagram situation, I don't condone that and I know that he stands by his apology and he feels so bad for everyone that he did offend," she said. "He didn't mean it. But I just want to move forward, to learn and to grow and continue to educate ourselves."
DETAILS ON PRESENCE, REACTION ON SOCIAL MEDIA:
Social media was not here for it. One user summarized their approach to viewing the finale: "Me preparing to watch the #BacheloretteFinale knowing good and well Becca is probably about to pick Garrett and I'm going to be mad."
As many pointed out, Yrigoyen "liked" posts that "mocked immigrant CHILDREN & liberal women," and the conspiracy theory that a Parkland survivor David Hogg is a "crisis actor."
Kufrin, meanwhile, previously supported Hillary Clinton and the Women’s March.
Meanwhile, jewelry designer Neil Lane says he was moved to create a special ring for Kufrin.
"I wanted to make a ring that was totally different than anything I had done for the show before," Lane tells PEOPLE. "I wanted to create something very special for Becca, especially considering everything that happened with Arie."
Breaking with Bachelor tradition, the ring is 18-carat gold and features almost 4 carats worth of diamonds.
"I wanted it to be elegant, quite glamorous and I wanted to use gold," Lane explains. "It’s a whole different concept — it has three oval stones, which helps celebrate both of them as a couple and the third diamond represents their future together."