Aaliyah Cosby joined Love Is Blind Season 5 looking for honesty but ended up getting more than she expected. Despite forming an instant connection with Uche Okoroha, the 29-year-old ICU travel nurse, the pair faced their first major hurdle after Aaliyah shared that she once cheated on an ex two years ago. In the aftermath of their emotional exchange, she cried in the arms of fellow cast member Lydia Velez Gonzalez, her best friend in the pods, who said, “I see myself in you,” as a song about having a secret cryptically played on the soundtrack.
The real reason became apparent in the final moments of Episode 3 when Uche confessed that he hadn’t “been completely honest” with Aaliyah, admitting that he unexpectedly discovered a woman he’d “dated in the past” was also in the pods on day one. “It’s Lydia,” he told her before the screen faded to black. In the next episode, Aaliyah doubled down that Lydia was still her “sister,” and that the three of them would “get through it” somehow.
After the secret was out, though, Lydia started spilling countless details about Uche’s life that Aaliyah “didn’t want to know.” With that already “pissing [Aaliyah] off,” Lydia dropped another bombshell: Her most recent sexual encounter with Uche happened just three months before filming began. All the drama culminated at the end of Episode 4 when Uche showed up in the pods — intending to propose — and after hearing nothing but silence on the other end of the wall, a man on a speaker announced, “Uche, unfortunately, Aaliyah has decided to not continue with the experiment.”
Netflix’s sneak peek at the rest of Love Is Blind Season 5 already teased that their journey didn’t end there, though. In addition to Uche telling Aaliyah, “I want to spend the rest of my life with you,” during an intense phone call in one upcoming scene, the trailer also previews the two meeting in the real world. “We have a lot to talk about,” he says in the clip. Though Aaliyah wants to wait to share her current relationship status, she hints to Bustle that she and Uche have been “in touch” after filming wrapped, noting their “mutual respect.”
As for the status of her and Lydia’s friendship? Aaliyah also prefers to “not speak on that” for now, but confirms that they’ve “had several conversations” off camera. “Woman to woman, I understand her perspective, all the facts, and I respect her,” Aaliyah adds. “I wish her the best. I want her to be happy.”
Either way, Aaliyah doesn’t regret the way she left Love Is Blind. “We all were dealing with a lot of things emotionally at the time. I think, in the end, we navigated that the best we could. And I think in the end everyone did what was best for them,” explains Aaliyah, who insists she still “wouldn’t do anything differently” today. “I feel like I did the right thing for me by kind of stepping away and saying, you know what, I just don’t feel emotionally secure in everything that’s going on right now, and I want to take a step away and just evaluate this a little bit longer before I were to get engaged to Uche.”
After filming wrapped in early spring 2022, Aaliyah’s Instagram has been full of positive affirmations and messages about self-care. After vacationing in the south of France this summer, she also hinted at more “new adventures” ahead. In addition to her travel nursing career, Aaliyah, aka “Aa,” a self-described songwriter and creator, has been in the studio working on music, while also teasing “so much in store.”