Clayton Echard, a former bachelor, speaks openly about his struggle with mental illness since his final episode in March and claims he is still “embarrassed and ashamed” of his behaviour on camera.
Because of Clayton’s dramatic assertion that he was in love with three ladies at once, season 26 of The Bachelor is now regarded as one of the most volatile seasons of the franchise. Susie Evans, Clayton’s current girlfriend, self-eliminated after learning that he had slept with Gabby Windey and Rachel Recchia, the other two finalists.
Before the show’s reunion episode, the pair resumed their romance off-screen. As the two Bachelorettes for this season, Gabby and Rachel made their debut on Monday.
Clayton now tells The Virginian Pilot, “Watching it again, I was humiliated and horrified by my behaviour and the way I was depicted or viewed on TV.” “In the end, I had to accept that my story was what was displayed. That was challenging since it goes against who I really am. Although I don’t believe that who I was on the show accurately represents who I am, I did those things and changed into that person.”
Many men went out of their way to reassure Gabby and Rachel they would never be Clayton, and one even brought a choir of kids to harmonise a “Clayton Sucks” song outside the arrival limo on the first night of The Bachelorette.
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“On the Off the Vine podcast with Kaitlyn Bristowe on Tuesday, Clayton said of the remarks, “It’s not personal, it’s business. Clayton approached the bullying with more composure despite Susie and other former Bachelors and Bachelorettes expressing their dislike for it.
I’m going to go track down those parents. So when I watched the show, the episode, and all of the attacks and the song, the choir, he said, “I honestly didn’t really get a reaction other than I just sort of smiled.”
According to The Virginian Pilot, Clayton’s post-Bachelor life is led by this sense of tranquilly. Following the conclusion of his season, Clayton battled a flurry of death threats and hate mail, so he started visiting a therapist and focused on mental health awareness.
He writes in the piece, “The hatred by way of statistics was incredibly hard for me to overcome. “If there had only been a few texts, I would have ignored it. If there had been hundreds of messages, I might have been sceptical. For me, though, there were thousands of messages delivered quickly, making it very overwhelming.”
He talked openly in April about having to face how his decisions on the show affected everyone in his immediate vicinity. He wrote on Instagram, “I never forget to offer myself grace, as we all should do for ourselves. “But I’m still developing, and I always will be. Since achieving perfection is impossible, we can all strive to improve from the day before. I will thus keep trying to achieve that.”
Now that he has emerged from the shadows, Clayton has begun a speaking tour across the country to promote mental health. In middle and high school, when kids are still impressionable and frequently unwilling to express their struggles, he hopes to reach out to them.
“He tells The Virginian Pilot, “I want to be able to be a beacon for them, to say, ‘Hey, listen, I was there as well. “I was able to get over this,”
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