‘Bachelor in Paradise’: How Does Kendall Long Feel About Ex ‘Grocery Store Joe’ Amabile’s Return to Paradise?

It’s been two long years since Bachelor in Paradise last aired but in a matter of weeks, season 7 will return to the small-screen. The cast list has been revealed and among the contestants is fan-favorite “Grocery Store Joe” Amabile. The reality TV star found love with Kendall Long in season 5 of the franchise spinoff but eventually broke up. Now that Joe’s back on the show, how does his ex feel?

Joe and Kendall met on ‘Bachelor in Paradise’ but ultimately seperated

Joe Amabile and Kendall Long pose for the camera as they sit next to one another.
Joe Amabile and Kendall Long | Michael Kovac/Getty Images for The Gentle Barn

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Before the pandemic hit, “Grocery Store Joe” and Kendall found love on the fifth season of Bachelor in Paradise. The two converged hometowns in exchange for a big move to Los Angeles in 2019 where they appeared to live happily together for a while.

By January 2020, the pair announced their separation, saying Joe was relocating back to Chicago while Kendall remained near her family. 10 months later, Kendall revealed the status of their relationship.

“We have a good relationship. It’s not romantic right now,” she told Us Weekly in October 2020.

She added in a new update — following the cast announcement — she “learned so much” from her time with Joe.

“That was the relationship, I just threw so much trust in and right off the bat was honest and open. It was the first relationship I actually saw, potentially, turning into a marriage,” she said. “That was something very new for me. It was a gift to be able to experience that from him. I think every single person that I date, I’m looking for that next level of connection.”

Kendall admitted she’s been dating but, “Dating in L.A. in general is difficult,” she said. “I’ve had some good dates. We’ll see. I’ve gone on a couple dates with somebody and I’m down to go on more dates.”

How does Kendall feel about Joe’s return to the franchise?

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Back in May, Kendall was asked how she might feel if Joe were asked to return to the franchise show.

“It would be so hard,” she said on the Almost Famous podcast. “I would not want to watch him fall in love with someone else. That would suck so much.”

Despite not wanting to actually watch it play out, she admitted she wants her former flame “to be happy,” just, “not in front of my face.”

“I still have a tremendous amount of love for him,” she said. “It would be really difficult. I would just be signing up for another heartbreak.”

It’s going to be one awkward season for Kendall is she plans to tune in. Bachelor Nation is still hoping the two can work things out but in the mean time, Joe explained how it went down.

Joe forgot what ‘Paradise’ is all about

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During an episode of the Click Bait podcast, Joe revealed he didn’t expect to be in the original cast, let alone a second time.

“I wasn’t expecting to be in the original cast,” Joe said. “I forgot all of what Paradise is about. It is a wild ride, and this season is insane. Every day got more and more intense.”

He said he’s excited to watch the new season, adding it’s unlike his first visit.

“It was a lot different than my first time. It was wild, it really was,” he said. “I can only compare it to the season I did prior. This was, no exaggeration, 15 times more intense.”

No spoilers here because we want to watch Joe’s journey unfold in real time when Bachelor in Paradise premieres on Mon. Aug. 16 on ABC.