Chris Harrison slams ‘The Bachelor’ for ‘very toxic’ departure


Chris Harrison is “grateful” for taking a moment and saying his goodbyes to “The Bachelor.”

Harrison, 52, fronted the ABC franchise from its start in 2002 until 2021 when he defended Season 25 contestant Rachael Kirkconnell for attending an Antebellum-themed party a few years before the show.

“What I went through was tumultuous. I don’t wish it on anybody. It was horrifying on a lot of levels — and something that I pray to God my worst enemy never goes through,” Harrison explained to “Bachelor” alum Jason Tartick’s “Trading Secrets” podcast on Monday.

“But, with that said, I knew I had to remove myself from what became a very toxic situation.”

Harrison admitted he wasn’t exactly to leave the show when he did and claimed they “probably could have figured it out.”

Chris Harrison says he's 'grateful' he left The Bachelor: 'It wasn’t healthy'
The newly-married Harrison resigned from the show in 2021 after he defended a contestant attending an Antebellum-themed party. Disney General Entertainment Content via Getty Images

“We all could have figured it out, but I had to remove myself from that toxic situation. And so I’m proud of that decision,” he said. “I’m proud that I handled it the way I did and I still look at [the show] as a blessing because it changed my life on so many levels. Financially, of course. It changed my life. It changed my kids’ lives.”

He continued,  “I hold those things dear. It was a blessing. It changed my life, but at the same time I can also be grateful that I’m gone. That’s a relationship I don’t need to be in anymore because it wasn’t healthy.”

Although his time on the show ended prematurely, Harrison has no intentions of returning to reality dating shows. In fact, he claims it’s “gone downhill” since he resigned and Jesse Palmer replaced him.

The newly-married Harrison resigned from the show in 2021 after he defended a contestant attending an Antebellum-themed party.
Chris Harrison attends ABC’s Winter TCA 2020 Press Tour in Pasadena, California, on Jan. 8, 2020. AFP via Getty Images

“Once I left, people started taking their shots at the champ and they’ve succeeded and now there’s competition and now there’s shows [that] are in the zeitgeist, they’re being talked about, they’re getting press that we used to get,” he said. “Again, it’s hard to survive when you don’t have those eyeballs anymore because people will talk about another show.”

The Post has contacted reps for “The Bachelor” for comment.

Harrison found love for himself off-screen as he tied the knot with “Entertainment Tonight” host Lauren Zima in November. Many “Bachelor” alumni, including Wells Adams, Ben Higgins, Arie Luyendyk Jr., Sean and Catherine Lowe, JoJo Fletcher, Trista Sutter, and Colton Underwood were in attendance.

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