"I remember thinking — I was like, 'Why did you pick me? You have somebody that you probably would have been really compatible with,'" Susie Evans recalled
On the latest episode of The Viall Files podcast, Evans recalled coming to the realization that Echard — who she met on season 26 of The Bachelor — might have been more compatible with his runner-up, Rachel Recchia.
"You really don't know if you're compatible until you get out of there," she told host Nick Viall of being on the ABC dating series. "So I remember looking back and being like, 'You are way more compatible with Rachel.'"
"I remember thinking — I was like, 'Why did you pick me? You have somebody that you probably would have been really compatible with.' And other girls too, that didn't make it quite as far," she added.
When asked if she thinks Recchia was "more compatible" with Echard, she shared, "I mean, I don't know now. But more compatible than me."
Evans also reflected on not being able to connect with Echard on a deeper level during filming.
"I think it's more of a testament to the process of the show," she shared. "You don't get enough quality time with that person."
"I mean, that privacy behind fantasy suites, in my mind, I was like, 'I would have to ask every question over the moon. I would want to really know that person on such a deeper level. I want to know so much about them as a person because that's the only time you get to truly be real and raw and not have to worry about the world judging you,'" she continued. "But the show doesn't give you enough time to have those kinds of conversations. It feels very surface-y, I think, for a lot of it."
She added that she feels producers played a large role in moments between her and Echard on the show, possibly including when he decided not to give his final rose to Recchia or Gabby Windey in order to pursue a relationship with Evans.
"I don't even know if I'm really supposed to say it, but there were things that were said or done throughout the process, where I was like, 'That was so thoughtful. That was such a thoughtful thing to have happen,'" she recalled. "And then after the process is over, you find out that that was somebody else's idea."
"That was somebody who's been listening to me [in interviews] for months that was like, 'You should make this toast and talk about her character, and how you admire her as a human being,'" she continued. "These things that you're like, 'How does he know me so well?'"
Evans added: "It's like, no, these are people in his ear. And so it takes away from things where when we come out of there, I'm like, 'Wait, you don't know anything about my character. You don't know anything about who I am.'"
Evans' admission comes nearly six months after the couple split in September.
In a joint Instagram statement, the former couple shared in part, "With incredibly heavy hearts, we wanted to share that we have decided to go our separate ways. For anyone who has ever loved, knows this was a painful decision to make and not one taken lightly."
"When you get over your reality tv trauma," wrote Gibelli — who is currently dating Horstmann — on top of an Instagram reel set to audio which states, "A win is a win."
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She jokingly captioned the clip, "But did we?"
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