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"I was so upset breaking up with him," Brown, 27, tells PEOPLE in this week's issue. "I know he really did care about me and he's such a great guy. I was really confused."
John Fleenor/ABC Peter Weber and Hannah Brown
Weber and Brown had a strong connection on her season, most notably for getting intimate during one of their dates; she later spoke out about it during a heated conversation with contestant Luke Parker.
"I never thought it'd be shown," Brown recalls. "It was very hard watching that for me, because I felt like I'd let down my faith. I am grateful I had the opportunity to be a voice for other women, but I don't know if I was ready for it."
For more from Hannah Brown, pick up the latest issue of PEOPLE, on newsstands Friday, or subscribe here.
Regardless, by the fall of 2019, Weber, 30, had been announced as the next Bachelor. "Once I knew that, it helped shield my feelings for him," says Brown. "I still didn't know if I could get there with him."
Nonetheless, Brown ultimately made an appearance on Weber's season and the pair had an emotional interaction.
"Going back and seeing him as the Bachelor, it brought up a lot," she says. Off camera, "Peter told me he'd quit the show, 100 percent, if I could say that I wanted to be with him. I wanted to go on a date with him, but I couldn't say that I knew for sure."
John Fleenor/ABC Hannah Brown and Peter Weber
At a February engagement party for Dylan Barbour and Hannah Godwin, Brown and Weber began talking, and then surreptitiously left the party together.
"He was like, 'I have so much to tell you,'" Brown recalls, writing in her book that the former couple ended up in bed together. "The chemistry just wasn't there," she says. "It just sucked. And then, I found out he had another girl [runner-up Madison Prewett] on his mind. It was all so bizarre."
Lauren Alexandra Hannah Brown
Weber ended his engagement with Sluss to explore a relationship with Prewett, though they didn't end up back together. Meanwhile, Weber and Brown — who has been dating Adam Woolard for a year — haven't spoken since.
"Things might not have turned out the way I expected, but I try to learn from every moment," she says. "I don't wish ill on anybody. And I'm in a really good place."
God Bless This Mess: Learning to Live and Love Through Life's Best (and Worst) Moments hits bookshelves on Tuesday.