Bachelor Nation Stands Up for Olivia Caridi Over 'Bachelor' Treatment
Olivia Caridi distanced herself from The Bachelor franchise for four years following her “villain” edit on Ben Higgins’s Season 10, but she returned to the show on last night’s episode of The Bachelor: The Greatest Seasons — Ever! and not only did she get the chance to reflect on her season with host Chris Harrison, but she also received a very heartfelt apology from Ben himself.
For those who don’t remember, Olivia didn’t get along with some of the other contestants who criticized her for apparently trying too hard to get Ben’s attention. She was also made fun of for the faces she made and the size of her mouth — which she then used to her advantage to start her podcast, Mouthing Off With Olivia — and found herself at the receiving end of some vicious social media hate.
"There was so much pain associated with it. I felt terrible that I had hurt people. I never wanted to, but obviously, it was clear that I did, and so that hurt. And then seeing what people really thought of me and what people were saying, that was really hard,” she shared with Chris.
“I'm sure a lot of it was deserved, but I did feel like some of it was a little ruthless. And it affected me. It was just making fun of my physical attributes that I can't change.”
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When I got a call that season 20 of The Bachelor would be airing again, I was terrified. For the past four years, I’ve been bettering and forgiving myself, improving my mental health, and kayaking home from the island 😉. The last thing I wanted was to regress. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Having said that, I’ll never let this footage air and not take ownership. I would hate for that be the last anyone sees of me, because I’m far from the person I was then. By doing this, I feel so much lighter. Like I can really let go, stop hiding from the world, and focus on what’s meant for me. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ You’re going to fall flat on your face sometimes, and that’s okay. You are not defined by your past. You CAN pick yourself up again, and you’re not alone. It’s brave to ask for help if you need it. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ No matter what happens tonight, I love y’all and I’d go through all the crum again just to connect with all of you. Embrace the growth that comes from all lessons and experiences. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Signed, ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ The girl who still has the largest mouth maybe ever
She continued, “You can not like me because of my behavior, and you can even talk to me and say you don't like it, and I guarantee I'll try to change it. But to just ruthlessly make fun of me and then say nothing to my face, that was never my intention on the show. I never tried to do that to anyone."
Ben then made a surprise appearance to take ownership for not doing enough to combat the hate she received. "I think the way that I navigated the confrontations and the issues on the show could have been better to help you. But mostly, I just wanted to speak to you and say I'm sorry, and then also anybody watching this, to say, come on. This girl is a rockstar,” he shared.
“She laid her heart on the line for love. She tried her best, and yes, it didn't come off perfectly all the time, but none of us did. And that's the beauty of the show. So Olivia, I'm sorry. I take responsibility for this, but I also just want to tell everybody how awesome you are."
While Olivia was grateful to hear Ben’s apology, it wasn’t just the former Bachelor who stood up for the former villain. In fact, many people on Twitter — including members of Bachelor Nation and fans — shared how much they love and respect Olivia.
— Brett S. Vergara (@BrettSVergara) June 23, 2020
“This episode is strictly dedicated to @OliviaCaridi who got the worst of the worst edits ever. justice for Olivia!!!!” one fan shared.
Another said, “Wow watching this replay of Olivia clips is making me cry thinking of what she went through after the show.”
Ashley Iaconetti wrote, “I hope everyone watching tonight is wondering why the heck @OliviaCaridi was ever villainized. All I see is fun, stunning, smart, and relatable. I’d love to see her on a Paradise season soon. Retweet if you would too!”
I hope everyone watching tonight is wondering why the heck @OliviaCaridi was ever villainized. All I see is fun, stunning, smart, and relatable. I’d love to see her on a Paradise season soon. Retweet if you would too! pic.twitter.com/28mhwF4uUi
— Ashley Iaconetti (@ashleyiaco) June 23, 2020
Former Bachelor star Ashley Spivey also shared, “Only watching tonight to protect @OliviaCaridi and because I adore @benhiggi.
— Ashley Spivey (@AshleySpivey) June 23, 2020
What did you think of Olivia’s appearance in the episode? Let us know below!