Courtney Robertson Met Ex Arie After He Proposed to Becca: ‘I’ve Never Seen Him So Sad’

Arie Luyendyk Jr.’s ex-girlfriend and The Bachelor season 16 winner, Courtney Robertson, is opening about his emotional state shortly after proposing to Becca Kufrin.

“I’ve never seen him so conflicted and sad,”  Courtney Robertson tells PEOPLE. “I felt sad for him. But I think he made the right choice in correcting his mistakes.”

Continues Robertson got engaged to Ben Flajnik on The Bachelor in 2012.

“I’ve been through it. … You go into this wanting this fairy-tale ending, and it’s so rarely like that.”

“I knew that he was feeling like making the switch,” she says of the time she spent with Arie “I’ve never seen him so conflicted and sad. We talked through everything. I gave him the best advice I could give him. I encouraged him to follow his heart.”

Talking about the controversial break up, “it was painful to watch,” says Robertson. “But he made a mistake. People make mistakes. I don’t think people need to pile on. He told me he filmed it so it would guarantee [Becca] as the next Bachelorette.”

“I knew the storm was coming,” she says. “It made me heavy-hearted for everybody. But after watching, I can tell he’s so happy. I think he got what he wanted out of this. I can’t fault him for that.”

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