Credit: ABC

She came face-to-face with her ex Ben Higgins after Monday night’s Bachelor finale, but new Bachelorette JoJo Fletcher says she came to terms with their breakup months ago.

“It was really hard for me,” Fletcher tells PEOPLE exclusively. “But when I got home [from Jamaica, where Higgins proposed to Lauren Bushnell], I took a couple of weeks to myself to think about everything.

“The conclusion was that it happened, I was lucky to have gone through that, I learned so much and now I know what I want and I know what I deserve.”

As for her first chat with Higgins in four months? “I know that was a tough situation for both of us,” says Fletcher, 25. “I was super nervous but he explained it well and I have closure. I’m friends with Lauren and I think the world of Ben, and seeing them together, it made a lot more sense than I thought it would be.”

Continues Fletcher: “Watching it back, I kind of had to relive it and I definitely remember how sad I was. But I’m not bitter and I’m not angry. Ben followed his heart. Even though it didn’t work out, it still was a great relationship and I learned a lot from him.”

Now, Fletcher says she hopes to find “someone who makes me laugh, someone who is kind and genuine and adventurous.”

Episode Recaps

ABC's "The Bachelor" - Season 22

The Bachelor

This romantic reality competition series follows a gaggle of women vying for the Bachelor’s heart — and a wedding proposal. Will you accept this rose?

  • TV Show
  • 25
  • Mike Fleiss
  • ABC
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