Bachelor

'The Bachelor' lovebirds Matty J and Laura Byrne reveal the truth behind those spoiler photos

Look who can be out and proud!

By Jessica Chandra

After two months of keeping the biggest secret of their lives, Matty J and Laura Byrne are finally out in the open as a couple!

The hot Sydneysiders, who ~officially~ met and fell in love on the The Bachelor Australia 2017, went through emotional rose ceremonies, drama-filled cocktail parties, and spectacular single dates to realise they loved each other. Oh, and there was the matter of Matty also dating 21 other women, but, y’know, technicalities.

Keeping this secret hasn’t been easy for Matty and Laura, who have been trailed by paparazzi from the moment Laura was named the frontrunner for Matty’s heart. As with every Bachelor before him, Matty also copped heat for letting go legendary babes like Tara Pavlovic and runner-up Elise Stacy, but that’s just how this show works.

The morning after the finale, the out-and-proud lovebirds spoke to Cosmo about how Laura’s meeting with Matty’s family really went down in Thailand, how they’ve dealt with mean comments, and why the paparazzi were particularly frustrating this year.

Congratulations!

Matty and Laura: Thank you!

Matty J, you Matty J’d Elise last night!

Matty: Yeah, I know.

Laura: Straight off the rank!

Matty: Unfortunately it’s part of the process, and I knew that was something I would have to do.

Was breaking up with Elise easier or harder than you thought it would be, having been in that position?

Matty: I think it was harder. I wasn’t sure how I was going to handle it. When it came to that moment, when she was standing in front of me, I think I just numbed myself to the situation. I knew how plain awful it was going to be for her. It’s almost like I desensitised myself to it all.

How did Laura’s meeting with your family really go? We got a pretty intense edit of it last night.

Laura: I couldn’t even watch that last night. I found it the most horribly cringe thing that ever happened to me in my entire life.

Matty: It was endearing!

Laura: No, I wasn’t endearing, and no one else thought that either. I was definitely nervous, and I do talk a lot when I’m nervous, but it was edited in a very rapid-fire way to make me look crazy [laughs]. And probably a lot crazier than I came across on the day. Tom and I had a little bit of friction when we were speaking, because he was asking some really hard questions — but not because there was anything difficult in our conversation. When I spoke to Matty’s mum, she was so amazing — she was warm, kind, and so lovely. That put me so much more at ease.

There are theories that the best parts of your dates were probably edited out because it would have been too obvious. Do you think this is the case?

Laura: I think that they’ve shown a lot of our time together, but there has been a lot more jeopardy put into the mix from time to time that I think wasn’t necessarily there. Like I didn’t leave hometowns with Matty being unsure about how I felt, but that wasn’t necessarily shown, like our full conversation. I do think that there’s been a few things that I would have loved to have been included, but it adds to the suspense of the show.

Unfortunately, with shows like this, you get very passionate viewers who will say things like, “Laura’s the ‘boring’ winner.” How have you both dealt with unkind things being said, perhaps because some of the other girls got more positive edits?

Matty: I think, whilst there’s always going to be people who don’t agree with my choice, it’s been lovely to see the amount of positivity that’s out there as well. And we’ve had so many really nice messages of support, not only from people who are fans of the show, but from media as well, and I guess we just try and focus on that positive, more so than the negative.

Trolls always have something to say.

Laura: Totally. And it’s definitely not been black and white. I think the positive and the negative comments have been even-handed. Everyone who watches the show, they end up like someone, whether it be Tara, whether it be Elise, or whether it be me, and it is disappointing for them when it’s not the person that they like the most who ends up being the last woman standing. In the reality, we’re really happy together and this is what we want for each other, and with each other.

Matty, in different interviews you’ve said it wasn’t love at first sight, but that you wish you could’ve told the other girls on night one that it was Laura. Which is it?

Matty: The comment was made where a lady previous asked me, “Do you wish that you didn’t have to hurt everyone else’s feelings?” It was like, “Yeah, after I’d made that final decision, I’d made that call, and I’d told Laura she was going to be the one, in hindsight, it would have been great on night one to tell everybody else that they shouldn’t be there,” but we had to go through that process, and go through all of the rose ceremonies and single dates to figure out that Laura was perfect for me.

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When was ‘the moment’ for both of you?

Matty: For me, it was something that was really gradual. Every single time I was with Laura, my feelings definitely developed and got a lot stronger, but it was only at that final moment, the morning of the finale, when I allowed myself to really make the decision about who was going to be the person I spend the rest of my life with.

Laura: I think for me it was hometowns. Up until that point, it had been a bit of a whirlwind, and a fairy tale, and all very lovely. Then when we got to my home, and I saw Matty with my family, that was all very normal to me, and that’s what I wanted. I don’t need the helicopters, I don’t need the boats — that just made me really take stock, and think about, ‘Can this relationship work in the real world?’ and, ‘Is this relationship what I want in my life?’ And the answer to that was yes.

At least you got a helicopter, and a boat, and an elephant on that last date!

Laura: I know, right? He pulled out all the stops.

The paparazzi this year were particularly full-on, and you guys were almost caught out by a huge spoiler-y story. How did you deal with that? What was the most intrusive bit?

Laura: I think it’s incredibly disappointing that they try so hard, to the point that they literally harass us, and me, by following me from the moment I wake up to the minute I go to bed, to try and spoil the story for everyone. No one wants a spoiler, no one wants to know the outcome before the final episode, and they just try and ruin it for everyone. They were particularly relentless this year, and very invasive.

Matty: I think Laura copped it so much worse than me. There were times we were sneaky, and they were parked outside our house, but for me, I was kind of left alone. It was frustrating because even with that weekend we had away, there was no photo of us together, but people were still framing it, and we were like, “Stop digging so hard to try and find the result.”

Laura: And even with that weekend away, the thing that was so frustrating for me was I did get dropped off to my sister’s house, and I spent six hours there. I had dinner there, and then I came home. It wasn’t like it was us arriving at the same time, or anything like that. There were so many precautions put into place, and they didn’t have evidence, but they had to put together the story anyway, to try and prove that they were right.

There was no money shot.

Laura: No, they didn’t have it, but they were so hell-bent on ruining it for everyone that they still went ahead with that article.

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Matty, if you could stay in touch with any of the girls as friends, who would it be? And Laura, how would you feel about that?

Matty: I’m sure I will stay in touch with some of the girls that Laura’s closest with. She’s been fortunate enough to build some really great friendships. Am I going to reach out and speak to those people every day? Absolutely not. But I’d love to get to the point where we could all have lunch together, and hang out, and it not be awkward.

Laura: And I totally trust Matty. If he wants to speak to someone, I know that that’s grounded in friendship. And that’s completely fine with me.