After fighting with Adrian Hassan on last week’s episode of The Bachelorette, there was more drama in store for Brayden Bowers on the July 10 episode. The episode began with Brayden getting the first one-on-one date. Brayden had previously opened up to Charity Lawson about how hard it was for him to see her going on dates with other men, so she wanted to give him the one-on-one as reassurance that they had a connection.
On the date, Brayden continued to be vulnerable and honest with Charity. “I’m not going to lie to you, it’s scary for me,” he admitted. “You’re dating other people and connecting with other people. It’s not a bad thing, but I’ve had a relationship where I was cheated on and I was so invalidated and felt so small. I don’t want to experience that again. It’s hard because I’m walking back into that trauma and forcing myself to be okay with that trauma every day in this situation. Can I handle it? I don’t know.”
Charity flat-out asked Brayden if he’d be able to handle it as the process went on and things got even more serious. “I can 100 percent promise you I’m going to try,” he assured her. “If you want me here, I’m going to stick this out and pursue it. You’re a great girl, so I’m going to face my emotions and swallow those things and push forward. You’re worth trying for and I want to continue to get to know you more.”
Hearing that was just what Charity needed, and she gave him the rose. “Brayden said I’m someone worth trying for and that’s exactly what I needed to hear,” she gushed. “He gave me his honest answers. I don’t think he gave me perfect answers, which I’m not looking for. I don’t want the perfect answer. I want the answer that’s right for him. I saw a lot of vulnerability from him, sharing things that were difficult for him. That’s all I’m asking for is just the effort.”
As the week progressed, Brayden began opening up about how he was feeling to the other guys in the house, as well. He admitted that he wasn’t sure he’d be ready for an engagement at the end of the show, knowing that the woman he was proposing to had just dated 20 of his friends. That comment rubbed Aaron Bryant the wrong way. “If you’re not sure about Charity, then leave,” he insisted. “It’s time to buckle up and be here for the right reason. Don’t walk around with a rose if you don’t want to date with 20 other guys.”
At the cocktail party, Aaron brought his concerns about Brayden to Charity. “I’m just being real with you and I want you to know that I’m here for you,” he told her. “I will look out for you. I don’t want to see you waste your time and get your heart broken.” After having a one-on-one with Aaron during week two, Charity had a lot of trust in him, and she grew frustrated with Brayden after hearing what Aaron had to say.
“It doesn’t seem like Brayden can even see a clear picture of wanting to get engaged,” she said. “I’ve given so much reassurance and validation. I think the hard pill for me to swallow is that no matter how many times I do that, it still might not be enough. I’m irritated times a million. I don’t have time to continue to deal with foolishness.”
Aaron straight up told Brayden that he talked about him to Charity, and Brayden defended his feelings. “When I spoke to her I told her I’m taking it day by day,” he shared. “The idea of an engagement after this is a scary thing. I don’t think all of these people are contemplating what an engagement means.” Of course, Brayden was pissed that Aaron bad-mouthed him to Charity. “I feel like I need to be like Will Smith right now and be like, ‘Keep my name out of your f****** mouth!'” Brayden said in a confessional, referencing Will’s Oscars slap in 2022. “I’m annoyed. There was no reason to bring up my name.”
Meanwhile, Charity was contemplating what to do, and she said she had no problem taking Brayden’s rose away. She finally pulled him aside to confront him about the situation. Brayden explained that he felt like his connection with Charity was real, but he wanted to be honest, and at this early stage, he honestly wasn’t sure if he’d be ready to get down on one knee at the end. “If anything, my hesitancies are more real than what anyone else is expressing,” he pointed out.
Charity understood how hard the process was and she acknowledged that. However, she also pointed out that Brayden knew what he was getting himself into when he came on the show, and wanted to make sure that he was going to still be able to give it his all now that he was there. “I can tell you that I can give you a connection,” Brayden insisted. “But at this point, that’s all that I know I can give you.”
Charity left the conversation feeling “frustrated,” and going into the rose ceremony, she wasn’t sure if she was going to take Brayden’s rose away or not. “My head is saying send him home, but my heart is saying that I feel something for this man,” she admitted. “I am afraid of making a mistake.”
In the end, Brayden got to keep his rose, because Charity felt that their connection was strong enough that she wanted to see it through. “I didn’t want to act too prematurely on anything,” she explained. “So I hope my gut is right.”