'BiP's Blake Horstmann Says The Show Gave Him "Pretty Bad PTSD"
It turns out Blake Horstmann had more trouble in Paradise than what played out on TV. During a Friday, March 27 Instagram Q&A, Blake from BiP claimed he still has "pretty bad PTSD" after his 2019 stint on ABC's Bachelor summer spinoff. After a fan asked the Colorado native if he would ever return to BiP, he didn't hold back. "I def wouldn't do it this year (still pretty bad PTSD)," he answered. "I don't even know if I would do it in the future either because I don't know if I could be myself. It's hard for me to trust anybody now let alone producers and anyone in front of cameras.... People change dramatically in front of cameras." Bustle has reached out to representatives for ABC and Bachelor in Paradise for comment on Horstmann's claims about his experience on the show, but did not hear back at the time of publication.
For reference, the National Institute of Mental Health defines PTSD (or Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder) as "a disorder that develops in some people who have experienced a shocking, scary, or dangerous event." People who have PTSD may feel stressed or frightened, even when they are not in danger, according to NIMH.
In other posts, he said he has absolutely no favorite memories from BiP, and the one decision he wishes he could take back from the series is ever joining it in the first place. "Honestly, I'll never be the same. None of us are after an experience like the show," he wrote on Instagram. "But that's not necessarily a bad thing. You live and you learn."
Blake had been a fan favorite as the runner-up on Becca Kufrin's season of The Bachelorette in 2018. When BiP Season 6 debuted in August of the following, however, fans learned the details of a complicated love triangle between Blake and fellow Bachelor Nation stars Kristina Schulman and Caelynn Miller-Keyes that involved incidents at the Stagecoach music festival prior to filming. During BiP's two-night premiere, Kristina confessed her mission was to make Blake her "b*tch." They both ultimately decided to leave the show in week 5.
Blake also drew criticism for releasing private text messages between him and Caelynn on Instagram in an attempt to clear his name. While on BiP, Caelynn had accused Blake of ghosting and trying to silence her, as well as calling their relationship a mistake. "This is the last thing I wanted to do, but my name and character are being attacked, he wrote on Instagram. "My name is all I really have."
Responding to more fan questions in his IG Stories, he added that he's "become very passionate about mental health" after leaving the show and has been making "huge strides" in therapy. "I was in a REALLYYYY bad place and luckily I have an amazing family and alot of close friends," Blake wrote, noting that "everyone" was taking his side privately, but not publicly.
While he's put any potential future return to a Bachelor franchise series on the back burner for now, Blake seems to be focused on putting his emotional well-being first.