Perfect Ben no more?!
On The Bachelor's Feb. 29 episode, fans were shocked to see Ben Higgins do something no Bachelor has done in 20 seasons of the show: He said "I love you" to two of the final three women, Lauren B. and JoJo. They were shocked. We were shocked. America was shocked. Ben was, too, but not because of what he said, but the reaction to it, with Bachelor Nation accusing him of breaking the rules.
So was he ever actually told he couldn't drop the L-word to anyone by producers when he first signed on to be the Bachelor?
"Never," Ben told E! News' Will Marfuggi at the Women Tell special, which will air March 7."I don't know of a rule book, maybe there is one, maybe fans out there are hiding...I keep hearing he broke all the rules. I didn't know there were rules to this."
After telling both Lauren B. and JoJo that he loved them in Jamaica (See JoJo's shocked reaction above), Ben said at the end of the episode, "I'm in love with two women and it complicates things." You could say that again. But Ben stressed to us that he "committed" to expressing his feelings when he signed up for the show.
"Maybe I'm confused, but when I started this experience no one gave me a playbook or rules to follow," Ben said. "They say, 'Do this how you think you should do this,' and you don't always know the best answer to questions and sometimes you do develop feelings you don't expect. What I committed to was expressing those feelings, but no one ever said, 'Don't do that, don't do this!'"
We also spoke with Caila Quinn, the woman he wasn't able to say "I love you" back to, about her emotional exit, including that heartbreaking car ride just after Ben broke up with her.
"Driving home in the car, I felt an immense, consuming sense of loss because I really did fall hard for Ben," she admitted, "And it was just a really cold water shock that it's over. I had to deal with it, so it took a lot out of me."
Still, watching the season has proven to be almost therapeutic for her. Why? Press play on our interview with her above to find out.
The Bachelor: Women Tell All special airs Monday, March 7, while The Bachelor's finale airs Monday, March 14 on ABC.