Warning: There are major spoilers ahead.
Remember the first rule of Bachelor Nation: Never trust the finale promo. When Ben Smith decided to return to The Bachelorette to profess his love for Tayshia Adams, she seemed pretty annoyed. Sure, when she sent him home last week, she said that she wished he'd been able to open up more, but she probably didn't mean that she wanted him come back and make her have to choose whether or not to send him home all over again. However, now that we've seen the finale promo, that is probably going to be what happens. Sorry to all the Ben fans out there, but the long term signs are pointing to his eventual exit, no matter what may happen in the short term.
By coming back, Ben put Tayshia in an incredibly tough spot during one of the most important weeks of the show. Prior to Ben returning, she was down to just her final two contestants, and now she has to decide whether to bring a third contestant back into the mix.
Even as Ben revealed his true love for her, Tayshia looked visibly frustrated. "No, I'm not alright," she said when Ben finished his speech. She told him she needed a minute and got up and walked out of the room to talk to a producer. "What? Like I just want to cry," she said. "I don't know what to do. There's a rose ceremony. What do I do with that?"
Despite her clear frustration, Tayshia does seem to give Ben an initial second chance. The promo for the finale shows them kissing and we see footage of Ben bragging in a confessional about how great their connection is. However, this is a Bachelorette promo, which means nothing is as it seems. And the short preview contains a few clues that Tayshia may end up regretting inviting Ben back to the show.
In one moment in the trailer she says, "Why did I do that?" and she also has a heart-to-heart with her father about potentially getting hurt. He says he's concerned about her walking down the same path that led to her previous marriage ending. There's really no reason why he would feel that either Zac Clark or Ivan Hall would potentially hurt his daughter. But Papa Adams may see it as a red flag that Ben previously couldn't tell Tayshia how he really felt and that she'd already been okay with letting him go.
Tayshia expressed earlier in the Dec. 21 episode that she'd already been in a relationship where she felt she had to make her partner love her. It's why she was understanding about Brendan Morais' exit from the show when he realized he wasn't ready to propose. She doesn't want to end up in the same position that already led her to a divorce. Even if Tayshia lets Ben back for one more date, she may soon double down on why she sent him home in the first place — that he has a hard time opening up. Ben may have tried to rectify that during the Dec. 21 episode, but it could well be too little too late. Tayshia's other two contestants have been much more forthcoming about their feelings, especially Zac, with whom she traded "I love yous" this week. It may be hard for Tayshia to overlook that and take a chance on the guy who couldn't say it to begin with.
Fans should prepare for Ben Round 2 on finale night, but if you're hoping for a full on reunion, we'd suggest you don't get your hopes up.