Former 'Bachelorette' Rachel Lindsay on infamous Chris Harrison interview: 'I literally have PTSD'

Rachel Lindsay first appeared on
Rachel Lindsay first appeared on "The Bachelor" in 2017. (Photo: CHRIS DELMAS/AFP via Getty Images) (AFP via Getty Images)
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Rachel Lindsay is still dealing with the fallout from an interview she did with Chris Harrison, who was then the host of The Bachelor, last February.

"It's a struggle. I literally have PTSD from that interview… from watching it, from the aftermath," Lindsay told The Alcalde, the alumni magazine at her alma mater, the University of Texas at Austin. "Friendships were lost over it; people were calling my job asking for me to get fired. It was total harassment; it was a really tough time. But I guess I couldn't live with myself if I held back. I just never want to live in a place of regrets, and I feel like I was given this platform for a reason, and I have a certain purpose, and I'm supposed to live that out."

In Lindsay and Harrison's awkward exchange on Extra, she asked him about his thoughts on photos that had surfaced online of contestant Rachael Kirkconnell, who is white, attending a fraternity party with an antebellum plantation theme in 2018. Harrison defended Kirkconnell, who was, at the time, competing for the franchise's first Black male star. Harrison asked people to have "a little grace, a little understanding, a little compassion" and suggested that the photos would have been more acceptable in 2018. Lindsay pressed him on those comments, asking, "If I went to that party, what would I represent at that party?" After backlash from Bachelor Nation followed, Harrison apologized, but he announced his departure from the long-running franchise in June.

Later the same month, Lindsay wrote in New York Magazine that she was cutting ties with all things that had to do with the dating show. Subtitled "I thought I could change The Bachelor franchise from within. Until I realized I was their token," Lindsay's piece recounted her many frustrations with the ABC show, including the resistance to change she encountered there.

Still, Lindsay is putting herself out there again, in a new book of essays, Miss Me With That: Hot Takes, Helpful Tidbits, and a Few Hard Truths, out Jan. 25. It contains an entire chapter on mental health.

"And it's probably my favorite in the book, because I talk about how I got into therapy and why," Lindsay said. "It's interesting in the journey I go through, and the stigma in the community when it comes to Black people… you're supposed to pray your problems away. I struggled with religion versus therapy, but that is what has kept me grounded. That is what's kept me sane. Meditating, yoga, just taking a break."