Breaking the mold. Rachel Lindsay once believed that dating outside of her race wasn’t an option because it threatened her identity as a Black woman.
The Bachelorette alum, 35, explained on the Thursday, July 9, episode of the YouTube series Uncomfortable Conversations that society’s expectations made her feel “so against” interracial dating.
“I’ve always been told that I wasn’t Black enough and I’m not even [biracial],” Lindsay explained. “I’m a Black woman and I’ve always been told that I wasn’t Black enough because of the way that I grew up, the experiences that I had. So I, you know, to be 100 percent honest it was something that I fought before I came on to The Bachelor.”
She added, “Up until I was 30 I really didn’t date seriously outside of my race because I felt like society— not my parents, not my friends — society was telling me I had to pick a Black man.”
Lindsay became the first Black lead in the Bachelor franchise in 2017 when she starred on season 13 of The Bachelorette. The former attorney said that she felt people would “judge” which contestant received her final rose.
“I feel like they expect me to pick someone who looks just like me, but that’s not fair. They should just want me to fall in love with whoever it is that I vibe with,” she said.
The Texas native ultimately chose Bryan Abasolo, who is Colombian. The pair got engaged on the show and tied the knot in August 2019.
Lindsay told Entertainment Tonight in June that she and the chiropractor, 40, have been forced to have “tough discussions” about race as an interracial couple.
“People were not receptive to our relationship at the end of [The Bachelorette],” the reality star — who has been vocal about diversity issues in The Bachelor franchise — said at the time. “So, we’ve always had to develop a thick skin and figure out how to navigate this world as an interracial couple. We did that from the very beginning.”
The former ABC personality added that she felt grateful that her husband stood by her side when she wanted to advocate for the Black Lives Matter movement.
“Communication has always been the foundation of our relationship and we always have those tough conversations, so watching Bryan protest and scream ‘Black Lives Matter,’ and really get emotional in the whole experience … of course I look over and am like, ‘Gosh, I made the right decision, because he understands me and I understand him,'” Lindsay said.Listen to Here For the Right Reasons to get inside scoop about the Bachelor franchise and exclusive interviews from contestants!
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