It was "love at first sight" for Ali Fedotowsky, 25, and Roberto Martinez, 26, on The Bachelorette Season 6. But life is no fairytale. Roberto is messy, Ali told reporters on a conference call. Ali gets grumpy when she's hungry, Roberto countered. If only those were the biggest obstacles facing the latest couple in the Bachelor franchise! But they know better.
In an extended interview filled with lots of laughter and some playful banter, the happy couple discussed their love story; the ugly Jake and Vienna breakup; the Matt Leinart and Gabrielle Ortiz rumors; their status as the "bigger" Kelly Ripa and Mark Consuelos; her temptation to respond to spoilers online; the possibility of joining Dancing with the Stars; and their willingness to get married on TV because it would save money. (Roberto's mom wants to invite 700 people to the wedding!)
Ali was worried this season about not being loved back, so what made her take a leap of faith with Roberto?
Ali: That was definitely a fear of mine, but my relationship with Roberto was so strong that I felt I had faith that if I took that risk, and he was the only man that I took to the end, I felt that he felt the same way about me. Yeah it was a fear, but I think what was so great about me sort of overcoming that fear is I overcame it in the best possible way — I didn't have two guys at the end I just had that one.
When did she know it was Roberto?
Ali: I knew for sure with 100 percent certainty that it was Roberto during our last date together. You know, when we were in the rain and, like, together and everything was just so perfect and wonderful and I just felt so good and I didn't want to be with anyone else. At the end of the night, normally, you know I think 'Okay, I need to stop focusing on this guy and I need to focus on the next guy.' I need to end my date with Roberto and focus on Chris. But I couldn't focus on Chris. I just wanted to spend more time with Roberto. So that's when I knew for sure, but in retrospect looking sort of back to the first night, that feeling that I had when I saw him was like nothing I've ever experienced. So I don't know I kind of think I fell in love at first sight!
What were your families' reactions to the engagement?
Roberto: My family's reaction was extremely — I couldn't hold it in. As soon as I got back to Tampa, after the finale... I told my parents right away. ... They loved Ali when they met her and now they're looking forward to spending even more time with her.
Ali: It was so cute, I talked to his parents last night when we were at Jimmy Kimmel and they were so cute. His mom was like 'I love you, Ali!' I was like crying when I was talking to her 'cause it was just such a beautiful moment for all of us. I waited a little bit to tell my parents, not because they wouldn't be thrilled — they loved Roberto when they met him — but because I didn't want them to feel tempted to share the information. It's such a huge secret to hold onto. So I waited a little bit. But when I told them they were like 'Yeah, we already knew. It's so obvious.' And I was like 'Oh, okay'! So they're so happy for me and they just love this guy. They're like 'When can we come out, when can we come out and be with you two and get to know Roberto better?' And I'm like as soon as we can. We have a lot going on right now.
What does Ali plan on doing next, a Facebook-type position or television?
Ali: You know, I feel like I've been — my reason for being the Bachelorette was 100 percent, I don't care what anyone says, my reason was to find love. And with being the Bachelorette there's also this, you know, media frenzy and publicity that, you know, has brought a lot of good things into my life and opportunities and to do things for charity that I'm so grateful for. So yeah, you know, I don't think I'll be going back to Facebook but, who knows, I definitely have some people that are advising me right now and helping represent me so I can figure out what's the best move. I want to do this right, I want to do this right for my relationship, for Roberto, for me and just make the best of this blessing that we've been given to, I guess, just do good in the world and I want to do more of that.
Will Roberto be pursuing baseball or selling insurance?
Roberto: I think baseball is just a big part of my life, but no I think that's definitely in the past. I think we did it on the hometown dates because I thought it'd be something fun to do. It's part of who I am, you know. But baseball is definitely part of my past — unless the Yankees call me up and need a starting pitcher. Actually I think we're going to the game tomorrow, so if they need somebody to come on relief I'd be happy to do that. But I probably will not be pursuing it.
Do you follow the spoilers and are you ever tempted to comment on stories to direct people one way or another?
Ali: Yeah, I was very well aware of the spoilers out there. I probably shared them with Roberto, he doesn't really read into that stuff. Yeah, you know, it was tempting just because, you know, at the beginning of this season everyone sort of realized that Roberto and I had this great connection from the beginning and they were sort of rooting for us, and that was so exciting! It's good to have people behind you and supporting you. We don't need it, but it's nice. And then when the sort of rumors came out that we were together or, you know, that I was single or that maybe I ended up with him but we were split up already — it was so hard because all of a sudden people went from sort of supporting us and excited about our love story to you know 'Oh this is awful' and you know 'The Bachelorette is about finding love and Ali didn't even care, she didn't want to find love.' So that was so hard for me. It really, really was and there were so many times when I wanted to be like 'You're wrong! You're wrong!' But I knew I needed to wait it out and, you know, all that matters now — I mean regardless of how anyone else feels — is that we have each other and we're so happy.
How did Roberto feel to hear he was the only man at the end. Was he shocked?
Roberto: I was shocked. Part of the whole deciding to propose thing — yeah, I only want to do that once in my life and it made it a little bit, I guess not difficult, but it was definitely on my mind that there was another guy here. So it was definitely a thought on my mind throughout the day. When she finally told me I was shocked. I knew, the little that I did know about the show I knew that normally it ends with two guys or two girls at the last rose ceremony. So it was definitely a good feeling, but I knew that things were going to turn out well as soon as I walked up those steps and I saw her smiling. Then I knew it was good.
When will they be going back to his hometown of Tampa and how will they avoid the pitfalls of other couples?
Roberto: I think we talked about going to Tampa really soon. I think that's on the top of the list. I actually got a text message from my college coach at the University of Tampa that the Rays want me to throw out a first pitch. I would be honored to do that so hopefully I can get to a Rays game down there. ... Your next question, I think for me it's just she'll always be a priority for me. She'll always be at the top of my list. She's what makes everything else worth it and to me that's what life is about — to share your life with somebody special and she's that special person for me. So she's always going to be at the top of my list. Other than that, I don't know. I haven't really followed too many of the other couples so I don't really think in terms of 'Oh we're a Bachelor or Bachelorette couple.' I just think of it in normal terms.
Ali: Yeah we're just a normal couple and we're in love and we're happy. And you know there's no reason for us to think that it won't work, you know?
How did you keep it under wraps the whole time?
Roberto: Poker face. Yeah, everybody wants to know.
Ali: He had a terrible poker face!
Roberto: Just sharing with her. I don't know, it's tough. It definitely had its dark moments but you do what you can.
What was your reaction to Matt Leinart rumors?
Roberto: That's the reason I don't really keep up with the tabloids and everything else, because it's easy to get caught up in that. So I tend to steer away from it.
Ali: He laughed about it. Remember I brought it to you and I was like 'Oh, look who I'm dating!'
Roberto: Yeah, it's just a big joke. But we trust each other and we communicate really well and that's a strong part of our relationship. It's just funny.
If ABC decided to make one of the guys in the house the new bachelor, who would be the best?
Roberto: I think the obvious choice is, I would say it's Chris. Among the other guys it was just a really good group. I mean I could name off a couple names — Kirk was a great guy, Craig was a great guy, along with Ty. I wish them all the best, I hope they find happiness. If they want to do that, choosing this kind of vehicle to do it, then I send them my blessings.
Ali: I completely agree with Roberto. If Chris chooses to do it I think it's his, the experience. I ... want him to be happy and we wish him the absolute best if he decides to do it. ... Love Kirk, Craig is just hysterical, super fun to be around, he'd make a great Bachelor. I mean, thinking of some of the things he said on the show, he had me cracking up so I know he'd be really entertaining. So, yeah, there's a few options, I think.
Does the breakup track record of Jake/Vienna and Jillian/Ed scare them? Are they worried about dating in the real world?
Ali: I think we're both really simple. We appreciate the simple things in life. We don't want the helicopters and the crazy lavishness with all the dates. We just want to hold hands walking down the street, you know? In terms of failed relationships, we realize there's been a few and... we don't consider ourselves a 'Bachelorette' couple. I mean, we are, but we don't lump us into a category. We just realize that we're in love. We're just a normal couple. ...
Roberto: You know what, for me, throughout the whole show we had all these amazing dates and went to all these cool places, but I always kind of kept that perspective that this is not what our normal life would be like to such a degree, you know, going on these lavish trips all the time. So early on I just pictured my life with her doing simple little things and that — honestly I couldn't wait for that, and that's why we're here. I'm just so excited, so it's good.
What about the rumors that Roberto has an estranged girlfriend named Gabrielle Ortiz who claims he cut off all communication with her? Does he even know her?
Roberto: I'll say this, I thought she was a friend and I was just kind of disappoointed in the whole thing. And there's not a whole lot more I want to say about that, but you know the whole thing was disappointing to read about.
On job prospects, does tinkering with the idea of going in front of the camera make Ali nervous considering how the limelight affected Jake and Vienna?
Ali: No, it really really doesn't. I think that the limelight and, you know, Dancing with the Stars and all those things — that's not what tore Jake and Vienna apart. What tore Jake and Vienna apart was something within their relationship. Their relationship was already broken. And you know, long-term couples look at you... I don't know, we've been compared to, you know, the bigger version of Kelly Ripa and Mark Conseulos! So look at them. They are both in show business and from what I know of their relationship they're super in love. They make it work. I think if you have a strong foundation in a relationship you make it work. And we talk about it all the time. We sat down with Cameron (Mathison) from All My Children on Good Morning America and he was on Dancing with the Stars and we haven't been asked, but it could be a possibility, hopefully, and we asked him, you know, 'You sort of did that and you're happily married, give us your advice? Tell us, we want to make sure we put each other first and we make this work, what is your advice?' We're just going about it the best way we know how. I think, honestly, right now for me I know that this is sort of in terms of staying active, I guess, and staying busy means staying sort of in this entertainment world a little bit as much as I guess people would want me to. He's going to be super busy with his insurance company, so if anything if I was sitting home all day doing nothing being a housewife I probably wouldn't like that too much, so I think it'd be healthy for us both to stay busy but just always put each other first.
Would they get married on TV?
Ali: We talked about that, too.
Roberto: I think that we're definitely open to the idea. I think the money we could save from that we could use to, you know, invest in our lives together. And you know what? It'd be kind of cool to share that moment with everybody as well, and be able to have my family there to experience that with us is really what's important.
Ali: Roberto has a big family! His mom told me that she was thinking along the lines of 700 people at the wedding! So that can get expensive so we were thinking, you know, it just makes sense for us to just take the money we spend on a wedding and invest it in our future — in our home, in our potential children's future. So we feel like that's what's really important and that's what we need to be focusing on.
Does moving to San Diego together — Roberto from Charleston, South Carolina, and Ali from San Francisco — put pressure on their relationship?
Roberto: For me it helps. I wanted to be closer to her. For me it was a decision I had to make with my business. I had to make the decision quickly and it was a no-brainer. I wanted to be closer to her. I wouldn't say it puts pressure on the relationship, if anything it helps it.
Ali: Yeah, we're so excited! It's so hard because he's been living in our place in San Diego for three weeks now. I want to go down to see it and be there. We're just super excited about it we don't feel any pressure for us. I'm so lucky that, you know, Roberto... sacrificed a lot to make this move for me and I thank him so much for doing that. ... Roberto was offered to start an agency for his company [State Farm] right in L.A. ... We didn't want to do that because we thought that would put a lot of stress in our relationship. You know, walking out of our apartment, potential paparazzi following us everywhere. We knew that we could still stay involved in stuff up here but be removed. San Diego's so beautiful and peaceful that it's just going to be such a nice place for us to start our lives together.
What's the one thing the other person needs to work on over the coming years to make you happier?
Ali: The only thing I would say to him right now would be you're going to have to work on keeping the kitchen a little bit cleaner! Roberto has a good appetite on him, he likes food, he likes to eat. He sometimes makes a mess of the kitchen!... He is working on that.
Roberto: She's awesome. Maybe, um, she gets a little grumpy when she's hungry. So maybe not take that out on me so much!