Week after week, The Bachelor has hinted at a forthcoming conflict in which one of the season’s late arrivals is purportedly exposed as a sex worker. When we finally saw the entire catty, careless, and slut-shaming mess unfold in week 4, it was even worse than the trailer depicted: shortly after joining the Bachelor cast, 23-year-old newcomer Brittany Galvin became the immediate target of a false rumor that she works as an escort, and when confronted, she broke down crying while a group of contestants watched on. A few of them, including resident villain Victoria Larson, laughed and told her to leave the show.
To use Matt James’ favorite term, there was a lot to unpack in the aftermath of the episode. But on Instagram, Brittany thanked viewers for sending her messages of support, and she also wanted to drive home another important message: even though she isn’t an escort, there’s nothing shameful about sex work, and no one deserves the kind of judgement she received from her castmates. “It’s 2021,” she wrote in a since-expired Instagram Story. “You know how prominent sex workers are in this world? Or how many people have OnlyFans? Why are we still judging others?”
She added that she wouldn’t have cared about the rumor if it happened “in the real world,” but that the events of last week’s episode could impact her career, reputation, and relationships. “To make it clear I am NOT an escort. And for the people who are, don’t let others tear you down. Keep sharing your stories with me because they are so powerful,” she continued. “I’m here to support you like how you have to me!”
Matt’s contestants weren’t happy with the decision to throw new women into the mix, and Brittany, a model and DJ from Chicago, became an easy target after she kissed Matt during her limo entrance. Further fueling the fire, Brittany asked to steal Matt while he was chatting with fellow Chicagoan Anna Redman. Although this is all pretty standard Bachelor practice (there's even a recurring SNL sketch about the phrase "can I steal you for a sec?"), it set Anna in motion, and she alleged to several women that she’d received “messages” warning her about Brittany “entertaining men for money.”
Brittany denied the claim when Anna brought it up during a cocktail party. “Making a conclusion about me before you even know me is just… I just feel like everyone’s against me right now,” she said, fighting back tears. “I know you guys don’t care at all, but it’s really hard.”
After receiving an outpouring of support online, she asked her followers to take the high road. “Yes it was a shitty thing to do, but let’s not destroy someone’s life over it. Bringing others down is exactly what I don’t want,” she wrote.
According to both a promo and last week’s cliffhanger, this season's fifth episode will open with Matt confronting the “culture of bullying” running rampant at Nemacolin Woodlands Resort. Until then: sex workers deserve respect. Brittany deserves an apology. And it’s time for the mean girls to go.