Blake Horstmann is speaking out about his brutal season of Bachelor in Paradise, admitting that calling his time navigating a complicated love quadrangle with Caelynn Miller-Keyes, Kristina Schulman and Hannah Godwin "rough" would be "an understatement." Sharing a photo of himself looking out to sea from the beach on Instagram after leaving the show unexpectedly in Monday's episode, Horstmann got real about how his actions created such a miserable experience on the show.
"To say paradise was rough for me is an understatement. I have no one to blame but myself for that," he wrote. "It’s not easy putting yourself and all of your mistakes out there for the world to see."
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"No matter the differences all of us had on that beach, I will always have respect for each and every one of you, being brave enough to be yourselves and chase the love we all feel we deserve," he continued. "Never forget that we are all human and not characters on television."
Horstmann continued to thank people who have sent him "kind words and encouraging messages," admitting, "Those have helped more than you will ever know."
"I hope that this is not the end of my story and I can look back at this summer and be grateful for the lessons learned and the friends made," he concluded, adding the hashtags "be kind," "I'm still not gonna stop dancing" and tellingly, "I'm still going to Stagecoach."
The Stagecoach hashtag was a clear reference to the music festival that spawned the whole situation for Horstmann after he hooked up with Schulman and Miller-Keyes on subsequent nights, resulting in drama so intense he felt he had to release texts from between himself and Miller-Keyes defending his side of the story.
The Bachelorette alum got a wave of support from his fellow Bachelor Nation stars, including Bachelor Colton Underwood, who commented, "All love! Proud of you man."
Fellow Paradise star Derek Peth wrote, "Always Love For You Blake!" while Paradise alum John Graham wrote, "Proud of you for putting yourself out there homie. You’re a good dude. Reflection and growth [for the win]."
Another Paradise alum supporting Horstmann after his exit was . Kevin Wendt, who wrote, "My man! As a human, we know you’re one of the great ones. Live, learn, and move on. Great things ahead for you my friend."0comments
Bachelor in Paradise airs Mondays and Tuesdays at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.
Photo credit: ABC/John Fleenor