Of all the mythology surrounding The Bachelor franchise, the idea that contestants are locked up in the mansion (or selected resorts during the destination episodes) is one of the most accepted. Bachelor Nation has come to understand that yeah, the ladies or gentlemen looking for love are forced to hang out with one another, 24/7, with easy access to booze but no phones and internet, to ratchet up the drama. That scenario sounds a bit cultish to my loveless ears—especially when contestants are flown to, like, Thailand, but aren’t allowed to explore—but bless them for tolerating the conditions, and the producers for making a seemingly luxurious life borderline untenable.
Tayshia Adams, who tied with Hannah Godwin in the runner-up spot in Colton Underwood’s season of The Bachelor and who should’ve become the next Bachelorette, spoke to Vulture and gave an accidentally haunting portrait of what life in the mansion is actually like.
When asked if she and the other women were allowed to “move around freely” whenever they weren’t shooting, she said:
“All of us really just relaxed, slept, and figured out what we were going through when we had downtime. Because it was a lot! There’s a lot of journaling going on. That’s why us girls get so close, because we legitimately just have each other as company. We dance around like crazy people and paint our nails, like, 50 times a week. It’s really nice not knowing the time or not having somewhere to be. It was really nice, not going to lie.”
Perhaps realizing how horrifying that image is, she continued:
“Don’t worry! We go out and about, but for the most part, we’re in our resort or in our rooms. We can’t text or be on phones because they’re taken away. We have a bartender, we have people constantly around us, we’re not in a little cell in a basement. We do a lot of things, I promise you.”
She added this, for whatever reason:
“I’ll say, the first time I’ve ever been out of the country was weeks before the show started—for a mission trip in Africa—and then we were traveling to places I could’ve never dreamed of. My passport is looking quite colorful. Thank you, ABC!”
Cool? A fat passport but few stories of traveling. At least the contestants got to paint each other’s nails 50 times a week... while in Vietnam? What Adams is describing is a never-ending sleepover with your boyfriend’s other girlfriends. It was the best of times. It was the worst of times.