After 18 seasons of The Bachelor, the stars of the hit ABC franchise have seen their names and on-camera behavior dissected and used as constant tabloid fodder.
But perhaps no Bachelor has seen more headlines than Juan Pablo Galavis.
From his controversial comments about homosexuals participating on the reality dating show to his reported obscene comment to runner-up Clare Crawley and his decision not to propose to his final choice Nikki Ferrell.
In fact, when you Google Juan Pablo’s name plus ‘worst bachelor,’ 46,900,000 results show up.
But as millions continue to vilify him, there’s finally one person who’s coming to his defense. And she’s been there before.
Former BacheloretteJillian Harris, the well-liked star of Season 5, has a lot to say and it’s not directed at the 32-year-old former soccer player. She’s got a mouthful for host Chris Harrison, former Bachelor Sean Lowe, his wife Catherine Giudici Lowe, and all those “bullying” this season’s star.
We’ll let her speak for herself.
“Where to start?! I feel like I haven’t gotten this worked up or felt this many emotions regarding The Bachelor since MY season!” she wrote on her blog. “As you all probably know by now, I speak my mind, and tell it how I see it. I am a bit more skeptical to do so this time, but here I go anyways…
“Do I think that Juan Pablo was a great Bachelor? No
“Do I think Juan Pablo is a terrible person? NO
“Are there a lot of things that Juan Pablo did that I am not OK with? Yes!” Jillian added.
“But [Monday night], it wasn’t Juan Pablo that got me so worked up! I was taken aback and upset with the show, Chris Harrison and all the thousands of people who said endless negative things and bullied Nikki and Juan Pablo on social media.
“So first of all, why Chris Harrison? Chris is such a good friend, and I couldn’t have imagined doing the whole process without him by my side. I also think we can all agree, no one could host the show better than him! But…I was disappointed last night. I felt awkward the whole time he interviewed Juan Pablo and didn’t understand the strong and relentless emphasis on getting Juan Pablo to say that he was in love!” she added.
“Justin said it so well last night: ‘Just because you’re on a TV show, doesn’t mean the rules of love change.’ You go on the Bachelor or Bachelorette in hopes of finding love, but there is no guarantee!
Jillian Harris and former fiance Ed Swiderski, who she chose on The Bachelorette in 2009, broke up the following year. Photo: Splash
“I respect Juan Pablo for not saying he loves Nikki just for the sake of the show, or to please the audience,” continued Jillian. “Who knows if Nikki and Juan Pablo will work out? But in the end, they chose each other, and they are committing to see whether they have a future together! I felt like Chris took it too far.
“Juan Pablo walks to the beat of his own drum, and does seem stubborn, but the show has the ability to also portray people the way they want to. I think there is a reason why Juan Pablo had his back against the wall and that’s probably because they decided to portray him a certain way, and edit their footage accordingly.
“I also wanted to touch on Sean Lowe’s comment of having no choice other than being in the public eye even once the show is done. I completely disagree!” she said. ” They have a very public life, because they have chosen to do so! After the show you can decide whether or not to keep your life public or private. A perfect example of this is [former Bachelor] Jason and Molly [Mesnick]. They dealt with a lot of controversy after the show, and they decided to keep their lives private. They focused on their relationship and building a family.
“And I also disagreed with Catherine’s comment about not ‘biting the hand that feeds you,'” Jillian wrote. “People go on the show because they are hopeless romantics, because they’re looking for an adventure and because a life partner is what’s missing in their life. Everyone’s experience and outcome is going to be different, and I think the reason Juan Pablo seemed annoyed by the end is because he didn’t conform to what the show and the audience wanted him to be.”
“And lastly, two wrongs do not make one right! I find it ironic that all everyone wanted to hear was Juan Pablo say he loved Nikki because in the end the show is all about finding love and being happy, yet all everyone did on social media was hate and bash. Somehow LOVE + BULLYING does not add up in my head. It seriously shocks me to see full grown adults say such horrible and mean things so publicly!” she said.
“It’s not OK to bully… EVER, especially when you have never been in their shoes! For everyone who called Nikki stupid, weak, etc, how are you making the situation any better? Let her listen to her heart and figure out her relationship on her own,” added Jillian. “And I find it hard to believe, that all these people have only ever had perfect relationships. Matters of the heart are to live and learn from and cannot be judged by an outside perspective.”
Check out Juan Pablo’s video dedication to his “amor” Nikki in the video below.