Monday's episode of The Bachelorette picked up from last week's cocktail party cliffhanger, where Katie confronted her potential suitors after Karl revealed in a private conversation that some of the men "didn't have the best intentions."
Following a heated confrontation between Karl and the other men, Mike P. interrupted the rose ceremony to tell Katie that he, "in solidarity" with the others, needed to let her know that Karl's accusation was false.
After consulting privately with mentors Kaitlyn Bristowe and Tayshia Adams, Katie reconsidered her decision to give Karl a rose and sent him home, along with John, Garrett and Kyle.
Monday's first group date featured Aaron, Quartney, James, Connor B., David, Justin, Thomas, Hunter and Brendan -- who joined Katie and former Bachelor Nick Viall for a group chat and shared personal stories.
Connor's emotional story about his battle with alcohol, the downward spiral that led to the collapse of a previous relationship and his road to recovery, touched Katie so much, she offered him the date rose.
The bachelorette was so moved by everyone’s honesty that she courageously opened up about an experience from ten years ago where she was coerced into having a non-consensual sexual encounter -- a secret she had kept even from her mother.
"I was in denial about what happened, so much so that I tried to form a relationship with him, because I didn't want to believe what actually had happened," Katie told the group.
"For years," says Katie, "I had a very unhealthy relationship with sex. I didn't want to have sex... I didn't like talking about sex. And it's taken me a long time to get to where I am now and being open and talking about it, and loving myself, and accepting things I can no longer control."
"I've come a long way from who I was 10 years ago," she continued.
The personal and heartbreaking revelations continued throughout the episode.
A one-on-one date with Michael A. started with a thrilling dune buggy ride through the desert and ended with the 36-year-old single father opening up about wanting to find love again after his wife's tragic death from breast cancer in 2019, three years after the birth of their son. The bittersweet story of sadness over losing the love of his life and his willingness to experience the "gift to be able to fall in love twice" won Katie's heart and the date rose.
Meanwhile, there was more drama brewing at the house as another man's intentions came into question. This time, it was Thomas who raised suspicions following his bombshell admission that he had originally entered the competition for the purpose of setting himself up to be the next Bachelor.
If you or someone you know has experienced sexual assault, know that you are not alone. Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network (RAINN) offers help 24/7 at 800.656.HOPE or RAINN.org.