Clayton Echard would really like a do-over.
On Tuesday night, the Season 26 Bachelor slept with two women (Gabby and Rachel) on this annual Fantasy Suite episode of this ABC franchise.
However, things later turned into a nightmare for Echard when asked on his third date of the installment, by potential wife Susie Evans, exactly how he could have gone to bed with a pair of suitors…
… while ALSO claiming he was in love with her.
It’s a pretty reasonable question, isn’t it?
Yes, Bachelors and Bachelorettes sleep around every season on this show — but Clayton didn’t just go all the way with Gabby and Rachel, while clearly hoping he’d be able to with Susie.
He also told all three ladies he loved them!
“If you feel like you’re in love with me, it doesn’t make sense to me to sleep with somebody else,” Susie told Clayton on air.
“I have such strong feelings for you, very strong feelings,” Clayton tried to argue in his own defense. “And I can tell you that right now I am the most in love with you. And I really felt like this can be it.”
Susie simply wasn’t having it, though.
“This is something very big to me and like I don’t think I can get past those things,” she replied. “I just don’t think I can.”
With that, Susie chose to leave the show… much to the shock and irrritation of Echard.
“I don’t even know who I’m looking at anymore,” Clayton fired back at Evans before saying goodbye. “You just dropped a bombshell on me, and I don’t agree with it at all how you went about it. I think it’s BS.”
Echard has garnered quite a bit of backlash for this response.
He’s been accused of gaslighting Susie; for blaming her for his actions and decisions.
What does Clayton have to now say for himself?
“I did not handle it well. I didn’t. I mean, it was not handled maturely,” he said Wednesday on The Ben and Ashley I Almost Famous Podcast
“I raised my voice to her. I was grasping at straws.
“I was trying to find anything that I could at that point to get her to stay.
“Like, I just wanted her to give me a chance. I went through this gauntlet of emotions.”
Clayton went on to explain that everything seemed “cordial” between himself and Susie, and then he was just taken aback by her stance on love and sex.
“She got up and she walked out, and then I started to have these really dangerous thoughts,” he explained on the podcast.
“I thought, ‘Why does it seem like she’s not fighting for this? Why does it seem like she can’t even give me a chance?’
“Like, I didn’t know she felt this way and I’m wondering why she won’t just try to give me a second chance because I wasn’t aware of how she felt.”
When asked if he believes he gaslit her, Clayton said:
“I totally disagree on the gaslighting concept because I was not trying to manipulate her from my bad benefit at all.
“I had no intention of doing that. I am not that kind of person. And that does strike a chord with me because that’s not me.”
As for telling Gabby, Rachel and Susie that he loved them?
“It doesn’t make sense. Now I see it,” Echard said.
Ahead of what we hear will be an historic Bachelor finale, here’s a look at some of the criticism that has some Clayton’s way from Bachelor Nation residents since the latest episode aired…
Tanner Tolbert: “Clayton went from the nice (although boring) guy ALL season long to a raging a–hole right before our eyes. FWIW… mean Clayton is way better TV than nice Clayton.”
Lauren Bushnell: “Go away Clayton. These guys really do forget it’s not all about them and their journey smh.”
Nick Viall: “Susie tried to express her feelings while trying to empathize with Clayton’s POV. Clayton expressed his feelings to Susie by being a dick.”
Demi Burnett: “Y’all are watching the bachelor on international womens day how f–kin ironic is that?”
Ben Higgins: “Clayton I’ll hold your beer but before I do can I just tell you something I wish I would have heard ‘stop, don’t do it…be better.'”
Joe Amabile: “I just want Susie to say you had sex and Jesus still loves you.”