Nick Viall and Natalie Joy first connected on social media and have been dating since 2020
After looking for love on The Bachelorette, Bachelor in Paradise and The Bachelor, Nick Viall turned to his DMs.
Viall began dating Natalie Joy, a surgical technologist and model, after she messaged him on Instagram. While the pair have been official since summer 2020, they didn’t share their relationship publicly until six months later. Since then, they have regularly posted on Instagram about each other, appeared at red carpet events together and talked about their relationship in several interviews. Joy has also made appearances on Viall’s podcast The Viall Files, which is, appropriately, all about love and dating.
“They said good things come to those who wait, but they never said the good would be better than anything you could ever dream of. I love you,” Viall wrote on Instagram in a Valentine’s Day tribute to Joy.
From connecting via Instagram DMs to discussing marriage, here’s a complete timeline of Nick Viall and Natalie Joy’s relationship.
July 2020: Nick Viall and Natalie Joy start dating
Viall and Joy started dating in July 2020, but they kept their relationship under wraps at first. The couple have admitted to not knowing their exact anniversary date, so instead they “celebrate it for 2 weeks straight” in July each year.
In June 2022, Viall shared that he and Joy met when she slid into his DMs. “I think DMs are a great place to meet people,” he told E! News’ Down in the DMs. “My current girlfriend slid in my DMs. Real clever, it said, ‘You’re unreal.’ I guess it was funny. I was more curious, wondering why I was unreal.”
October 2020: Natalie Joy and Nick Viall hint at their relationship
Before they became Instagram official, fans began speculating that Viall and Joy were dating. In September 2020, Joy posted a photo of herself in a pool captioned, “this is what i’ll be doing while you watch football.” A couple of weeks later, Viall posted a video of himself dancing by a pool — seemingly the same one from Joy’s post. “Fulfilling my pool boy dreams,” he wrote.
October 31, 2020: Nick Viall and Natalie Joy coordinate Halloween costumes
Viall and Joy posted another “soft launch” clue in October 2020, when Joy dressed up as Lois Lane for Halloween. “Fingers crossed i see superman tonight,” she captioned her photo. And who was dressed as Superman that Halloween? Viall, of course.
January 22, 2021: A source confirms Nick Viall and Natalie Joy are dating
In January 2021, a source confirmed to PEOPLE that Viall and Joy were dating. “She’s great for him,” the source said, adding that they had been dating since the year prior.
Just days earlier, the pair were spotted on a walk through Viall’s Los Angeles neighborhood.
January 27, 2021: Natalie Joy and Nick Viall go Instagram official
Joy and Viall made their relationship Instagram official a few days later. Joy posted a video with Viall on her Instagram Story showing her trying to give him a kiss while he was wearing virtual reality goggles.
February 8, 2021: Nick Viall opens up about his relationship with Natalie Joy
During an episode of The Viall Files, Viall shared that he was “super happy” in his relationship with Joy.
“It’s fun,” he said. “It’s great … I have those moments of gratitude and thankfulness. There’s moments where I’m like, ‘You’re really great and I’m really happy you’re a part of my life.’ “
“Between the two of us, I am easily the most dramatic,” he added of their relationship dynamic. “I’m the drama queen. She is a voice of reason, which is a breath of fresh air … She might have the highest amount of character in anyone I’ve dated.”
He continued, “She’s always present with what’s going on in the world … She’s always helping people out. She does make me want to be better.”
February 12, 2021: Natalie Joy posts about Nick Viall on Instagram
Joy posted Viall on her Instagram grid for the first time that same month, making a joke about the big reveal in the caption. “It’s a complete weight off of my shoulders to finally announce that i am in fact the mastermind behind the plant wall,” she wrote alongside a selfie with Viall, taking credit for part of the backyard remodel Viall posted about in December 2020.
March 21, 2021: Nick Viall’s Bachelor friends approve of Natalie Joy
Viall’s relationship got the stamp of approval from two of his close friends and fellow Bachelor Nation alums Ashley Iaconetti and her husband Jared Haibon. The foursome enjoyed a double date and posed for a selfie, which Iaconetti captioned on Instagram, “She’s everything we hoped he’d find. Perfect complement.” Joy commented on the post, “Aw I love you guys!! it’s a hard job but i’m up for it.”
May 17, 2021: Natalie Joy and Nick Viall make their red carpet debut
Viall and Joy made their red carpet debut at the 2021 MTV Movie & TV Awards: UNSCRIPTED. Viall posted a photo from the night on Instagram where he is smiling for the camera and Joy is looking at him lovingly. “This was her first time so she didn’t know to look at the camera,” he joked. Joy shared another photo from the red carpet and wrote, “can’t script this.”
June 10, 2021: Natalie Joy and Nick Viall get a puppy
Joy and Viall went from a duo to a trio when they got a puppy in June 2021. Viall posted a series of photos of the couple with the new puppy, who they later named Jeff, captioned, “Family Man.” Joy also posted about becoming dog parents, writing alongside a photo of herself holding the pup, “officially outnumbered.”
July 9, 2021: Nick Viall and Natalie Joy celebrate their first anniversary
Viall and Joy celebrated their one-year anniversary in July 2021 — though they don’t know exactly what day it falls on.
Alongside photos of the couple at the Williamsburg Hotel in New York City, Viall wrote, “Celebrating 1 year ish, by visiting the hotel where it all started. Thankful for every moment I have with you.”
Joy honored the milestone with her own post, which she captioned, “This has been the best year of my life, and it’s because of you.”
July 2021: Nick Viall says he could marry Natalie Joy
During an appearance on the podcast Not Skinny But Not Fat, Viall was asked if he could see himself marrying Joy.
“I wouldn’t be in a relationship with her if I didn’t think it was possible, you know?” he answered. “She’s the first person I’ve called my girlfriend, minus TV, in a long, long time.”
Viall added that before meeting Joy, he had become more particular about choosing a romantic partner. “For me personally, it was a pretty big step to want to call her my girlfriend. So I would say that that’s a good sign,” he said.
August 31, 2021: Nick Viall wishes Natalie Joy a happy birthday
In August 2021, Viall shared a sweet birthday post for Joy on Instagram. “Happy Birthday to the woman who brings out all the best sides of me,” he wrote alongside a video montage of Joy. “Your heart is even more beautiful than your angelic face. Everyday you challenge me to be more empathic, kinder, caring, and more fun. More than anything, thank you for making me feel safe to give you my heart. You make life incredible. I love you. Happy Birthday.”
September 28, 2021: Natalie Joy wishes Nick Viall a happy birthday
The next month, Joy returned the favor for Viall’s 41st birthday, posting several photos of him with a sentimental caption. “This man!!!! you are one of the best ones and anyone who’s met you knows it too,” she said. “I am so lucky to not only share this life with you but to love you, and to be loved by you.”
The caption stirred up some controversy, though, as followers noticed it appeared to be partially copied from Claudia Sulewski’s birthday post for her boyfriend Finneas. Finneas, whose sister is pop icon Billie Eilish, even retweeted a fan-made comparison of the two posts.
February 14, 2022: Nick Viall talks about potential engagement to Natalie Joy
In February 2022, Viall appeared on the PEOPLE Every Day podcast and discussed plans for an engagement with Joy. Viall shared that Joy would “love to hear” about an engagement in a year, but noted that “everyone’s situation is different.”
He added that he is not a fan of having timelines in relationships. “I think sometimes timelines can be a little bit dangerous about, you know, setting false expectations and reaching to a certain timeline and all of a sudden … [you] have other priorities,” he explained. “I just kind of tell people to just be careful about setting timelines. If they wanna set a time, it’s great, just make sure it’s mutual.”
June 7, 2022: Nick Viall and Natalie Joy address their age gap
The couple made a joint appearance on the Call Her Daddy podcast in June 2022, where they addressed their 18-year age gap. Viall admitted that initially, he was worried about the age difference.
“At first, it was something I think I was having a lot of anxiety about,” he said. “You know, like, ‘Are we going to be compatible?’ And I think early on that was part of the things I would worry about. But just the more I got to know her, the more I was just going to her for advice or just checking in with her, I just felt like we just met each other on the same wavelength and I always felt like she was my equal.”
Joy added, “We realized we were on the same stages of life and we were ready for the same things … I’m in a place where I want to get married and have children and he’s also in that same place. We both have big careers and aspirations and jobs and stuff that we both love.”
July 6, 2022: Nick Viall and Natalie Joy celebrate their second anniversary
Viall and Joy went back to Williamsburg Hotel to celebrate their second anniversary on July 6, 2022. Alongside photos of them enjoying their stay, Viall wrote, “When you don’t know your exact anniversary date so instead you just celebrate it for 2 weeks straight around the time to make sure you don’t miss it. Always starting at the place we met.”
The couple followed up their hotel visit with a romantic trip to Paris a few days later, documenting their travels on Instagram. Alongside a video of her and Viall kissing in front of the Eiffel Tower, Joy wrote simply, “2 years.”
August 9, 2022: Nick Viall says he and Natalie Joy have talked about getting engaged
During an interview with E! News’ Down in the DMs, Viall made his and Joy’s plans for the future clear — it’s just a matter of when they get engaged.
“We talk about it a lot,” he said. “We’ve been together for two years, we live together. I think we’re both excited about the future and we’ll just see when the next steps happen.”
October 4, 2022: Nick Viall says Natalie Joy gave him input on his book
While discussing his book Don’t Text Your Ex Happy Birthday on the PEOPLE Every Day podcast, Viall opened up about his biggest dating mistake: “Prioritizing my ego over my heart with any choice I’ve made when it comes to anything really.”
The Bachelor Nation alum also discussed how Joy influenced his new book, sharing that she was “very helpful in the process” of writing.
“I tried to be creative with my writing, and I tried to be … Obviously, I’m known for having pretty direct advice, but I wanted to be empathetic, and I wanted to be relatable and certainly not be harsh or anything like that,” he said. “Natalie was often the first person I would have read my pages.”
A day prior, Viall had showered Joy with even more praise when he posed a loving tribute on Instagram. “I wanted to share with you how lucky I feel to be loved by this woman. From the moment I met her, it was clear to how much she prioritized making people loved,” he wrote, in part, alongside a sweet photo of the pair.
Viall continued, “I have always believed that once I started prioritize the needs of my heart over the needs of my ego that it would somehow turn into the relationship of my dreams. I just never imagined my dream could be this magical. Forever grateful. I love you ❤️”