Colton Underwood is speaking out following the most personal conversation he has had yet on The Bachelor. During an emotional one-on-one date, Bachelor contestant Caelynn Miller-Keyes opened up to Colton about her traumatic experience being sexually assaulted as a sophomore in college.
In a deeply personal moment with The Bachelor star, the North Carolina beauty queen revealed that she and several friends blacked out and were raped after drinking wine that was drugged at a party. An emotional Caelynn detailed her story of being turned away by a hospital because too much time had passed to do a rape kit. The Bachelor contestant also revealed that only one of the men was expelled from the school and that the others “got away with it,” according to Us Weekly.
During the conversation, Colton Underwood shared that his “first love” was also sexually abused and he hinted that his ex’s fear about intimacy is one of the reasons he remained a virgin even after falling in love. Colton did not name his ex-girlfriend, but it is widely known that he dated Olympic gymnast Aly Raisman before landing the starring role as The Bachelor and that he has described her as his first love. Raisman has been open about her own sexual abuse and her testimony last year against Olympic team doctor Larry Nassar helped seal his fate amid rampant allegations that he molested Raisman and dozens of other young gymnasts.
After Caelynn Miller-Keyes’ emotional reveal on The Bachelor, Colton Underwood commended her strength in opening up to him. The Bachelor star later posted to social media to describe the moment with Caelynn as “bigger than the show itself.” Colton asked fans to be “kind, respectful, and understanding to everyone involved” as they watched the episode.
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There are moments that are bigger than the show itself… tonight’s episode has one of those moments. Please to be kind, respectful, and understanding to everyone involved. If you or someone you love needs help, love or support due to sexual abuse, or if you want to donate to help others, please visit http://rainn.org or call 800-656-4673
Caelynn Miller-Keyes also posted to Twitter to thank The Bachelor fans for all of their love and support.
“And to all of the fellow survivors out there, I want you to know your voice matters and you deserve to be heard,” Caelynn wrote.
Caelynn Miller-Keyes also posted a series of grim rape statistics after the emotional episode aired, and both she and Colton Underwood referred sexual assault victims to the anti-violence organization RAINN for support.
Ahead of The Bachelor episode, longtime host Chris Harrison teased Colton and Caelynn’s conversation in multiple interviews. Hours before the ABC dating show aired, Harrison tweeted, “There is a conversation that takes place tonight that I hope you will watch and then talk about #thebachelor. It is gut-wrenching, emotional but also incredibly important to watch.”
Earlier in the season, Harrison told Entertainment Tonight despite all of the jokes about Colton Underwood’s virginity, the show would soon “get to a much deeper, emotional level to the virginity and what it means and why.”
“All I will tease — there’s two stories that need to be told, but the people that tell the story, it is theirs to be told,” Harrison said. “I’m not trying to tee this up and make it bigger than it really is, it’s just a very personal situation and it would not be right for me to tell this story for either one of them.”
Harrison also teased that Colton and Caelynn’s “emotional, revealing conversation” changed the direction of this season of the ABC dating show. The Bachelor host revealed that Caelynn’s story prompted an unexpected reveal from Colton that was very “different” and something that would “change the course of the show,” and he teased that Colton’s virginity story was also tied to his prior relationships.
Not all Bachelor fans thought Aly Raisman’s story was Colton’s to tell. Some viewers took to social media to blast ABC for airing the private conversation, as previously shared by the Inquisitr. To be fair, Colton Underwood did not mention Aly Raisman by name at all, and he never used the Olympic gymnast’s name when talking about his past relationships during his stints on The Bachelorette or Bachelor in Paradise.
Colton Underwood’s season of The Bachelor airs Mondays at 8 p.m. ET/PT on ABC.