In a very nicely written statement provided exclusively to People, the destination publication for ABC-approved Bachelor news, the pair said:
“It is with heavy hearts that we announce our decision to go our separate ways,” they tell PEOPLE in a statement. “We feel fortunate for the time we had together, and will remain friends with much love and respect for one another. We wish nothing but the best for each other, and ask for your support and understanding at this time.”
The news was first hinted at Friday by Reality Steve in a tweet suggesting more break-ups from the franchise are to come.
The couple semi-recently shot down split rumors via an Instagram from Higgins in February, following gossip that they had broken up because Bushnell’s Instagram showed her celebrating her birthday traveling with girlfriends sans Ben. Just a few days ago, Lauren was putting out sponsored content relating to their backyard design.