Bad news, The Bachelor fans - season 26's Clayton Echard and Susie Evans have sadly called it quits on their relationship after just six months of datin.g
The former couple, both 29, shared the news of their breakup in a joint Instagram statement posted to Instagram on Friday evening alongside a photo of them smiling together. It began: "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."
WATCH: Clayton Echard and Susie Evans got together after the 26th season ended
"We understand that there will likely be a lot of questions about this decision — social media is definitely a highlight reel and much of our experiences together we have kept private as I'm sure most can understand. But we will share this — although this last year together has brought us so much joy and so many laughs, there has also been a significant amount of pain," they continued.
While they did not reveal the reason for their split, they went on to say that "external forces" took a toll on their relationship. "We know no healthy relationship comes without its struggles, but we've realized that we were not prepared for the external forces that hindered our ability to not only heal as individuals but also as a couple."
The former couple said they are "focused on continuing to work on ourselves, so we can be the best version of ourselves" going forward.
"This is not an easy time for either of us but we stand in support of each other and hope to see the other go on to find happiness and healing," they explained. "Although Claysie is no more, we hope that our communities can support us individually as we move forward with love and respect for each other."
The couple got together after the 26th season ended
The exes concluded their message by thanking fans for their support. "It means so much more than you will ever know," they signed off alongside a red heart emoji.
As fans will know, the couple were forced to keep their romance under wraps until the 2022 season of The Bachelor finished airing since Susie did not make it to Clayton's final two. Instead, he shockingly sent her home during the semi final, and the finale saw him break up with both Gabby Windy and Rachel Recchia.
Susie then came back during part two of the finale, although she didn't accept the final rose from him, choosing to leave the show solo instead. The pair then revealed in March that they got together after the show ended.
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