Bachelor Nation's Rachel Nance Details Getting Racist Comments Online

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Originally appeared on E! Online

Rachel Nance didn't want to stay silent any longer.

The 27-year-old, who appeared as a contestant on Joey Graziadei's season of The Bachelor, recently reflected on her decision to speak out about the racist social media comments she received after going on the show.

When Rachel was first cast, she was excited for fans to get to know her.

"I just thought, 'Oh my gosh, what a great opportunity. I can showcase who I am and what I am and my roots, and maybe the world will love that,'" the nurse explained in an essay for Today published May 20. "My dad is Arab and Black, and my mom is from the Philippines. I was born and raised in Hawaii, and I grew up in a big, blended family. I loved it."

Rachel loved teaching Joey about her family's traditions and culture during their hometown date, too. Although, she admitted she had some hesitations.

"I let my family take the reigns and introduce him to several Filipino customs—traditional dances and a feast of lechon," the reality star continued. "Before the date, I had to prepare myself. I wondered, ‘Am I doing too much, showing my culture?' But my family loved it, and I loved it. My mom and my auntie, who are both from the Philippines, were so proud."

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But while the date was filled with love, Rachel soon found herself facing hate.

"As soon as that episode aired on the east coast, I knew something was off, because I started getting some direct messages on my social media—people saying I'm disgusting, and ‘seeing you guys kiss is foul,'" she recalled. "I deleted the messages. Then once it aired all over, my phone blew up. People were saying my family is barbaric, my culture is barbaric, I'm a jungle Asian. People who were repulsed that Joey would even want to be with me."

Rachel Nance, Bachelor
Disney/John Fleenor

Rachel said she initially tried to ignore the racist comments—even setting up safety filters on social media so she wouldn't see them. But as someone who'd experienced racism before and not spoken out, she felt like she "kept the cycle going."

So, Rachel decided to share what she experienced on The Bachelor: Women Tell All.

"Because if I don't," she added, "I think everyone will think everything is perfect and there are no repercussions for being from a multicultural background or a minority in Bachelor Nation."

And she felt her castmates' support.

"I was so emotional," Rachel shared with Today. "It was like everything I'd ever experienced was coming up at that point. I have a hard time letting those emotions out, because of how I was raised. I didn't want anyone to think, ‘Oh, she's just trying to make a scene.' While I was on stage talking, the girls were cheering for me. I felt the love from all of them. The audience, too. For the first time since getting all those hateful messages, I just didn't feel alone."

During the Women Tell All, Rachel talked about the online messages she received.

"I'm sad because my parents—they really enjoyed the hometown episode," she said on the March episode. "And then for them to just see people attacking our culture and attacking me—I've kind of been in this scenario before, this is just a whole new level."

And Rachel gave an important reminder.

"People are so quick to be little keyboard warriors and pop off because there's no consequences, but we have to pay the consequences emotionally and mentally," she said. "Just be kind. Your words have weight to it, and things you say, it really hits home sometimes. Just be kind."

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