Bachelor Winner Nikki: Juan Pablo Still Hasn't Said He Loves Me

Juan Pablo Galavis Still Hasn't Said He Loves Nikki Ferrell
Juan Pablo Galavis and Nikki Ferrell
Piotr Sikora/VH1

09/11/2014 AT 12:40 PM EDT

Just one episode into VH1's Couples Therapy, things have already gotten raw between The Bachelor's Juan Pablo Galavis and Nikki Ferrell.

The show started off strangely when Galavis joked to the other participants that Ferrell was like a second daughter to him. "Some days, I feel like I have to push her," he said with a laugh. "I feel like a dad to her, but I'm not."

Ferrell took issue with the joke. "I don't act like I'm 15 years old," she said. "For him to tell complete strangers that, it's embarrassing and just not funny."

Their first therapy session was also tense. At issue: why Galavis hasn't told Ferrell that he loves her.

"I don't want to force anything from him," Ferrell said. "But there is still a part of me that thinks, 'Maybe today it's going to come. Maybe tomorrow it's going to come.' "

"I didn't know that," replied Galavis, who then explained what it would mean to say those three words.

"It's when you feel that you cannot live without this girl," he said. "Now, I feel like if she left me, I'd be very sad. I don't know if I'd die, but I'd be very sad."

The online backlash was immediate: Ferrell and Galavis got hundreds of angry Tweets after the show concluded.

Last month, Ferrell told PEOPLE that the backlash is difficult to read. "[Galavis] does a better job of ignoring it than I do," she said. "I read what people say, and it does hurt my feelings. I'm only human."

After reading some of the Tweets, Ferrell stepped away from social media. Galavis Tweeted that she had deactivated her account to "see who would say things to her face if there was no computer to hide behind."

Though Galavis isn't giving any hints about what's to come on Couples Therapy, he Tweeted that being on the show was "one of the best and most gratifying experiences. It wasn't easy, but totally worth it."

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