A former star of “The Bachelor” Colton Underwood has opened up about his sexuality, telling the world he’s gay.
Colton Underwood who has the support of his peers after coming out as gay, had told Robin Roberts in Wednesday’s episode of Good Morning America, in a pre-taped interview that he is gay, adding that it’s something he “came to terms” with earlier this year, despite knowing he “was different” since age six and figuring out his sexuality as a freshman in high school.
Colton Underwood first joined Bachelor Nation as a contestant on Becca Kufrin’s season of The Bachelorette and was later named the Bachelor himself.
Following Underwood’s emotional interview, the executive producers of The Bachelor released a statement in support of the former franchise lead.
“We are so inspired by Colton Underwood’s courage to embrace and pursue his authentic self,” read the statement, which was obtained by multiple outlets. “As firm believers in the power of love, we celebrate Colton’s journey in the LGBTQIA+ community every step of the way.”
GLAAD also supported Underwood, noting in a statement that “every LGBTQ person’s journey to discovering and accepting their authentic self is different.”
“Colton Underwood’s decision to share his truth with the public reminds us that there is no set timeline for coming out,” the statement read. “Given the large and loyal fandom who know Colton from The Bachelor, his coming out and discussion of his faith will hopefully open eyes to the millions of out and proud LGBTQ people who are also people of faith.”
Chris Harrison, who hosted Underwood’s season of The Bachelor, expressed his support on Instagram.
“Very proud of you today @coltonunderwood,” he wrote alongside a pic with Underwood. “Happy to see you stand up and openly live your truth. You have my love and support my friend.”
Likewise, Bachelor Nation alums took to social media to show their support for Underwood.
Onyeka Ehie, who was a contestant on Underwood’s season, tweeted, “Happy for @colton for speaking his truth. We support you.”
“Just a reminder that homophobic comments will not be accepted or tolerated today or any day,” she added in a second tweet. “You’ve been warned.”
During his interview with Roberts, Underwood admitted that he’s had “suicidal thoughts” in the past, but is now happy to be standing in his truth.
“I’m emotional in such a good, happy, positive way,” he said. “I’m the happiest and healthiest I’ve ever been in my life and that means the world to me.”
He also confessed to having mixed feelings about his time with the Bachelor franchise.
“I do think I could have handled it better. I just wish I wouldn’t have dragged people into my own mess of figuring out who I was,” he said of the women competing for his heart. “I genuinely mean that.
But I also at the same time, I can sit here and say, ‘I’m sorry’ to all those women. I can also sit here and say, ‘Thank you,’ because without them and without The Bachelor franchise, I don’t know that this would have ever came out.”
Underwood’s season of The Bachelor did not end in an engagement, though he did leave the show in a relationship with Cassie Randolph. The pair dated for a year and a half before calling it quits last May.