Former “Bachelorette” Kaitlyn Bristowe is back in the headlines after revealing on Twitter that she was offered a spot on “Dancing With the Stars” — but was told she couldn’t accept it by “Bachelor” creator Mike Fleiss, claiming he told her “he didn’t want people wanting fame” after appearing on the reality romance show.
Another one-time star of the franchise is now coming forward to defend Fleiss: former “Bachelor” Sean Lowe, who wrote about the controversy on his blog.
Lowe — who was allowed to compete on “DWTS” immediately after completing his season of “The Bachelor” — decided to “weigh in on the subject and give you my opinion (which isn’t worth much) considering I too made the decision to don the sequin shirts and tight pants.”
Writes Lowe: “I want to talk about Mike Fleiss’ decision to not let Kaitlyn dance but letting Nick [Viall] dance. Given my experience, I thought Mike was making the right move in stopping Bachelors and Bachelorettes from dancing. It doesn’t benefit his show and is toxic to new relationships: The odds of maintaining a healthy relationship during that time are pretty slim.”
However, Lowe does admit that what’s good for the gander should certainly be good for the goose.
“With that said, if guys can dance, I certainly think the women should be afforded the same opportunity,” he wrote.
That particular sentence echoes the feelings of Alberta-born Bristowe, who released a statement to ET declaring that if male participants on the show are allowed to go dancing, the same should hold true for women.
“I believe men and women should be afforded the same opportunities,” she said. “That has not been the case with ‘The Bachelorettes’ and ‘The Bachelors’. I had an offer to do ‘Dancing With the Stars’ and was told by [‘Bachelor’ creator] Mike [Fleiss] I could not. I was told by Mike that it is bad for his brand, and that he is sick of people wanting fame from his show.”
Added Bristowe: “I am a dancer and wanted to do it, [my fiancé] Shawn [Booth] wanted me to as well. He even wrote Mike emails. I told Mike it was my passion. I was told Shawn should be my only passion.”
She concludes her statement thusly: “My hope in speaking out is that future Bachelorettes are given the same opportunity as Bachelors,” she said. “Whether it be a wedding, to dance, or another show. (Ben [Higgins] had the decision to do dancing or his own show.) Just to be treated the same — to choose whatever will make them happy.”
For the record, Fleiss has apparently had a change of heart, tweeting that Bristowe “has my total support if she wants to appear on ‘DWTS’!!!”
That earned a sarcastic response from Bristowe, who replied: “Thanks, I’ll get right on that opportunity 2 yrs ago.”