Bachelorette 's Gabby Windey and Rachel Recchia Respond to Criticism of Joint Lead Format

·2 min read

Every rose has its thorn—just ask The Bachelorette's Gabby Windey and Rachel Recchia.

Both women are currently navigating the franchise's first-ever two-lead season, and while they've certainly experienced several blissful moments with their suitors, the unprecedented format has also thrown them for a bit of a loop. As Rachel exclusively shared during E! News' Daily Pop on August 2, "This season, for Gabby and I, has just provided struggle in ways we didn't really think or expect."

"So with a lot of ups and downs, you can sometimes get in your head a little bit," Rachel continued." But we continue to push on no matter what, and that's what it's ultimately about."

Gabby echoed her co-lead's sentiment, assuring Bachelor Nation fans that hope is on the horizon. "I know these last couple of episodes have been hard for people," she said, likely referencing that trainwreck of a rose ceremony. "But what you're not seeing is the balance, or else we wouldn't be here. We don't want to keep torturing ourselves. It is worth it, and there are lots of good moments."

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Continuing to address fans' concerns about the season's format, The Bachelorette stars insisted they've never felt like they were competing with one another. As Gabby put it, "I think Rachel and I would have to consent if we were being pitted against each other. We'd have to participate in some way."

The Bachelorette, Gabby, Rachel, Episode 2
ABC/Craig Sjodin

Instead, Gabby said she and Rachel always "put each other first," whether that means constant communication or just generally looking out for the other's best interests.

"Obviously it's going to get messy because we're dating the same pool of guys," Gabby continued, "but I think the guys [do] more comparing and make it into a competition about us, but Rachel and I want nothing to do with that. You see both sides of the story, but you have to pay attention to ours and how we're not letting it affect us."

Not even when they're put in an awkward position, as was the case on the August 1 episode when Logan Palmer confessed that even though he had accepted Rachel's group date rose, he wanted to switch sides and pursue Gabby instead.

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Reacting to the change of heart on Daily Pop, Rachel said, "It's definitely crazy watching everything back and hearing what everyone says behind the scenes. It's definitely a little sad to see it, but I think ultimately he's doing what he thinks he needs to do."

Thankfully, as Gabby pointed out, we still have over half of the season left. Hear more about what's to come on The Bachelorette in the above E! interview.

The Bachelorette airs Mondays at 8 p.m. on ABC.