Over a month after their split, Kaitlynn Carter is reflecting on her short-lived but highly-publicized relationship with Miley Cyrus over the summer.
In an essay for Elle, the reality star opened up about her breakup with Brody Jenner, as well as her ensuing relationship with Cyrus.
"This past July, I went on vacation with a female friend; the next thing I knew, I was in love with her," she wrote. "It wasn’t quite that simple, of course. But it also wasn’t very complicated, either."
Carter wrote that before that trip, "it had never crossed my mind that I was even capable of loving a woman the way I loved her." After breaking up with Jenner, who she described as "quite possibly the most beautiful man on the planet," she and Cyrus (who she only described as "a friend") took a trip in August that led her to her "first and only romance with a woman."
"Reflecting back on our three-year friendship, I realized I’d always been drawn to her in a way I wasn’t with other friends, but until that trip it had never crossed my mind to think of her in a romantic sense," she wrote. "Recently I’ve found myself wondering why and how my brain had been programmed to ignore an attraction that in retrospect seems so evident to me. I believe it was all just a matter of chemistry that had nothing to do with gender. I still don’t feel like I’m in a place to label my sexuality one way or another, but I’m OK with that."
In August, just after news broke that Cyrus had split with Liam Hemsworth and Carter split with Jenner, the two were seen kissing on vacation, and their romance continued once they arrived back stateside. However, they broke up in September, and Cyrus has since begun a relationship with singer Cody Simpson.
"While it was short-lived, I’ll remain eternally grateful to my most recent relationship for opening my eyes to this unexplored part of myself, and for inspiring a new level of self-discovery and wonder at all the possibilities of life," Carter wrote. "Although the relationship with my friend was often referenced in the media as merely a 'summer fling' or a 'same-sex affair,' it was so much more than that. This was a profound journey of self-discovery."
Carter concluded her essay by expressing her hope that "everyone, when given the chance, takes the time to understand who exactly their most authentic selves are, untethered from what we may have been taught to believe."