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Broken-hearted 'Bachelor' contestants who found love after the show

By Kate Torgovnick, The Frisky
Melissa Rycroft married her ex-boyfriend Tye Strickland after being chosen, then dumped, by Bachelor Jason Mesnick.
Melissa Rycroft married her ex-boyfriend Tye Strickland after being chosen, then dumped, by Bachelor Jason Mesnick.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Some heartbroken "Bachelor" contestants have found new love because of the show
  • Melissa Rycroft married her ex after Jason Mesnick publicly dumped her
  • Tara Durr and John Presser were rejected the first night, but met on reunion episodes
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(The Frisky) -- Back in 2007, "Bachelor" viewers were shocked when lame-oid Brad Womack decided not to choose either of the final 2 contestants (Jenni Croft or DeAnna Pappas) in the show's last episode. Uh, didn't he get that memo about the point of the show?

DeAnna was totally heartbroken, but picked herself up and became "The Bachelorette." Only she and her final choice -- Jesse Csincsak -- didn't work out, either.

Now, DeAnna has found her new love. And oddly enough, it happened because of "The Bachelor."

One of DeAnna's good friends is Holly Durst, a contestant on "The Bachelor" who was let go by Matt Grant. (Bizarre side note: she also dated Jesse.) Holly later got together with Michael Stagliano, who tried to win over Jillian Harris on "The Bachelorette."

Holly and Michael decide to set up DeAnna with Michael's twin, Stephen, and -- shocker -- it worked. DeAnna is currently home in Georgia, planning her wedding to Stephen, which will apparently be going down very soon. According to RadarOnline, before she left for the trip, Stephen tweeted, "The love of my life leaves me today to go home to Georgia :( ."

There's something oddly inspiring about seeing someone who was crushed on "The Bachelor" find love in real life. And we were happy to discover a few other "Bachelor" and "Bachelorette" alums who went from heartbroken to giddily happy in a very short time.

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1. She sought out her ex after public humiliation

Melissa Rycroft had one of the most disappointing runs on "The Bachelor" ever. After picking her and proposing in the final episode, Jason Mesnick changed his mind and very publicly dumped her for runner-up Molly Malaney on the "After the Final Rose" special. It was bad. Really, really bad. But Melissa leaned on a close friend and ex, Tye Strickland, after it all went down. Six months later they were engaged and they tied the knot last December, having their first kiss as a married couple to an instrumental version of the "Monday Night Football" theme song. She told Us Weekly, "We've been really good friends, but the timing was never right," she said. "It's funny how things happen. [Jason dumping me] was one of the best things that has happened to me in my life."

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2. Double rejections led to double happiness

Both Tara Durr and John Presser got rejected the first night they appeared on the series. The "Bachelor" Lorenzo Borghese just wasn't feeling Tara, the real estate agent from Florida. And the "Bachelorette" Jillian sent John packing without much of a chance. But through assorted reunions of the show, these two met and fell in love. "We probably never would have met if it wasn't for the show. He's actually from Indiana, and I've never even been to Indiana, and he's now in Connecticut, and I had never been to Connecticut," Tara said. John is pumped, too. In an interview with People, he revealed (TMI?), "Her morals were there. She saved herself for marriage, and for a girl like her, extremely attractive, to save herself for marriage," he said. "I'm just an extremely lucky guy."

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3. He went from being bashed to being matched

It's a little harder to feel sorry for Aaron Buerge, who had his choice of ladyfolk on season two of "The Bachelor" and ended up with Helen Eksterowicz. But they broke up after a few months, and Helen penned a book bashing him called Nobody's Perfect: What to Do When You've Fallen for a Jerk but You Want to Make It Work. So we're happy that he finally found love and asked Angye McIntosh to marry him last year. In an interview with People magazine, he explained how they met: "My ex-girlfriend and I thought we would get together for some beers with some other people, and that's how I met Angye," he said. "Long story short, I got some hot dog mustard on her the first time we met." Cute!

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