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'The Bachelor' Contestant Caelynn Miller-Keyes Opens Up About Being Raped in College

Editor's Note

If you’ve experienced sexual abuse or assault, the following post could be potentially triggering. You can contact The National Sexual Assault Telephone Hotline at 1-800-656-4673.

Though some have written off ABC’s “The Bachelor” as “anti-feminist,” Monday night’s episode might change some opinions.

The episode featured an important discussion about sexual assault between contestant Caelynn Miller-Keyes and “Bachelor” star Colton Underwood.

In the episode, Miller-Keyes shared the details of being raped as a sophomore in college. Underwood responded in a supportive manner, commending her strength and giving her a rose, indicating he wanted her to stay on the show for another week.

After her assault, Miller-Keyes said she struggled with feeling alone and not knowing where to turn for help.

“The reporting process is a lot more difficult than people realize,” she said in the episode. “I had no idea what to do. I was completely stranded, I was completely alone.”

The reality star shared that even though she did report, it took her over a year to open up to her mom about what happened. The assault is still not easy for her to talk about, but she felt the need to tell Underwood because “it’s something that will always be a part of me and will always come up in relationships.”

After the episode aired, she posted a screenshot to Instagram that said, “Unfortunately, my story is a common one” followed by sexual assault statistics courtesy of RAINN, the world’s largest sexual violence prevention organization.

View this post on Instagram

You are not alone.

A post shared by Caelynn Miller-Keyes (@caelynnmillerkeyes) on

Underwood also addressed the episode on Instagram by posting a photo of himself and Miller-Keyes, urging fans to be respectful of her story and sharing the sexual assault hotline.

There are moments that are bigger than the show itself… tonight’s episode has one of those moments. Please to be kind, respectful, and understanding to everyone involved. If you or someone you love needs help, love or support due to sexual abuse, or if you want to donate to help others, please visit http://rainn.org or call 800-656-4673

If you have lived through sexual assault, you’re not alone and Miller-Keyes has a message for you. On Instagram she wrote:

For anyone who has suffered from sexual abuse or is still suffering from sexual abuse, please please please know:

You deserve to be happy

You deserve to be safe

You are not alone

You are believed

There is hope

There is help

If you or a loved one is affected by sexual abuse or assault and need support, check out the below stories written by our community members:

If you are in crisis right now, call the National Sexual Assault Telephone Hotline at 1-800-656-4673 to be connected with a trained staff member from a sexual assault service provider in your area.

Header image via Caelynn Miller-Keyes Instagram

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