When Courtney Robertson appeared on ABC’s The Bachelor in 2012, she was quickly elevated to villain status.
Many viewers — and her fellow contestants — believed the 30-year-old model was catty, mean to the other women and couldn’t be trusted. Her comments on the show were put to auto-tune and went viral. And she had to face a televised firing squad of angry contestants who wanted to air their grievances.
In the end, Robertson won winemaker Ben Flajnik’s heart and a marriage proposal. They later split up, and Robertson briefly dated Bachelorette runner-up Arie Luyendyk Jr. She’s now sharing her story in I Didn’t Come Here to Make Friends: Confessions of a Reality Show Villain (It Books). The book pulls back the curtain on The Bachelor and maintaining a relationship made on TV.
Since your relationship with Flajnik didn’t work out and, in the book you detail the problems you had, do you feel vindicated after sharing those things?
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For me it does feel good to say, ‘No, this is actually what happened.’ I think people had this idea I fooled him for 11 months. To me that’s idiotic. … It was hurtful, but it’s not about being bitter. It’s a huge part of my life story, and I just had to tell the truth.
Few relationships coming out of “The Bachelor” or “The Bachelorette” have worked. Do you think it’s possible to find love that way?
If you’re really ready to settle down and find love I really think it can work. … I feel like the [bachelorettes] pick really well, too. … It just takes the right couple.
Do you worry that when you meet a guy now, he’s going to look up the show and watch clips of you online?
Definitely. I remember I went on a date after the dust settled, and I didn’t tell the guy, and he had no clue. And then someone came up and said, ‘Can I get a picture?' I was like, ‘Oh, I was on this show. Don’t Google me.’ Most guys understand. It’s definitely a little tricky though.
What have you learned about yourself?
I realized in writing this book, ‘Oh my gosh, I’m a serial rebounder. I need to make a change.’
What was Ben’s reaction to the book?
I definitely had a couple emails that were like, I hate to say, they were pretty nasty. I didn’t write this book for him. I stopped making decisions with him in mind the day we broke up.
There were reports that you were going to appear on the spinoff “Bachelor in Paradise.” Was that true?
I was entertaining the idea but ultimately, with [promoting] the book, I just couldn’t.