Controversial Bachelor Contestant Olivia Hits Back at Haters: 'You've Made Me Stronger'
brightcove.createExperiences(); Despite her own early predictions, Olivia Caridi didn’t end up as Mrs. Ben Higgins.
After bringing a whole to meaning to the reality TV manta “I’m not here to make friends,” Caridi was kicked off The Bachelor this week during a two-on-one date in which, after confessing her unrequited love for him, Higgins accidentally fooled viewers – and her – by bringing along an all-important rose to the breakup. (In his PEOPLE blog, Higgins, 26, called the move “another mistake and one that I regret to this day.”)
The last we saw of Caridi, she stood crying and abandoned on a stormy island as Higgins bolted away on a boat. But Wednesday night, the 24-year-old fired back at her critics with an Instagram post and called out the other women for “bullying” her by making fun of her toes, cankles, breath and aggressive pursuit of Higgins.
“Thank you to the lovers and supporters, both friends and strangers, who have reached out. I am eternally grateful,” the broadcast journalist wrote. “For the haters, you’ve made me stronger than ever before. The girls on this show see your comments and they have feelings. Think twice before sending an insensitive message. Words hurt, and they kill, too. Don’t be mean behind the screen. #AntiBullyingMonth.” <img class="size-article-wide wp-image-2389752" src="http://peoplev6.alley.ws/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/cover-435-27.jpg" alt="GET THE SCOOP ON EVERYTHING THE BACHELOR!” width=”2000″ height=”1333″>PEOPLE’s collector’s edition celebrating 20 seasons of The Bachelor, with new interviews and updates on your favorite contestants, is on sale now!• PEOPLE’s collector’s edition The Bachelor, with new interviews and updates on your favorite contestants, is on sale now in stores and online!
Caridi also reflected on her own actions: She came under the most fire for referring to a single mother as “Teen Mom.”
“This has been one of the most interesting experiences of my life. I’ve learned a lot about myself. Good things and tough lessons,” she wrote. “We’re all human. We make mistakes. Learn from them. Let them make you wiser. Be imperfect, flawed, and quirky. And own it. Never trade your authenticity for approval. Don’t be afraid to stand alone. Anyway, rant over. Can’t wait for adventures ahead!”
airs Monday at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.