Rachel Lindsay is back on Instagram.
The media personality and attorney, who was the first Black Bachelorette, deactivated her account last month following an onslaught of harassment and hate by Bachelor Nation.
Her returning post features a bouquet of sunflowers. The caption reads, “I want to be like a sunflower so that even on the darkest days I will stand tall and find the sunlight.”
Lindsay’s post has been met by an outpouring of support from her fellow “Bachelor” alums and other social media users.
“All the love coming your way,” wrote Katie Thurston, who was a contestant on Matt James’ season, while Chelsea Vaughn, also from James’ season, commented: “So happy to have you back, hoping you are feeling refreshed and loved.”
The harassment by Bachelor Nation began after Lindsay’s “Extra” interview with “The Bachelor” host Chris Harrison, who defended current contestant Rachael Kirkconnell’s past attendance of an antebellum plantation-themed fraternity formal.
“It’s not a good look ever because she’s celebrating Old South,” Lindsay said in the interview. “If I went to that party, what would I represent?”
Harrison asserted that while the theme of the party was not okay in 2021, it was a different time in 2018. He later apologized for his defense and announced he is “stepping aside” from the franchise for “a period of time.” “Bachelor” fans then directed their frustrations at Lindsay, leading to her account deactivation.
“Rachel is not responsible for Chris Harrison, a 49-year-old man who can’t read the room in these present 2021 times,” Van Lathan, Lindsay’s “Higher Learning” podcast co-host, said. “She’s not responsible for that. It’s not her job to make excuses or provide cover for somebody who doesn’t understand what the fuck triggers people in today’s world.”
In an interview with Michael Strahan on “Good Morning America,” Harrison confirmed that he wants to stay as the host of the franchise, though the network has yet to confirm his return. He also took the time to publicly apologize to Lindsay.
“I am incredibly sorry. To anyone who is throwing hate towards Rachel Lindsay, please stop. It is unacceptable,” he said.
Lindsay then accepted Harrison’s apology on an episode of “Extra,” saying: “I do accept that and I think it’s important for me to say that because we need to move forward. And for me, for us to move forward, I need to accept the apology, so we can all be better from this situation, which is what we want.”
Though the franchise itself has yet to release a statement, executive producers of “The Bachelor” supported Lindsay with a statement on Twitter: “Rachel has been an incredible advocate for our cast, and we are grateful that she has worked tirelessly towards racial equity and inclusion.”
Kirkconnell is among the final four women remaining on James’ season, who is the show’s first Black Bachelor. The finale airs March 15.