Indianapolis native Lauren Griffin made her reality television debut this January on ABC’s The Bachelor, where she vied for the heart of IndyCar racer Arie Luyendyk. The Ben Davis High School alum and Indiana University grad will be returning to ABC on Feb. 13 as a contestant on the spin-off series The Bachelor: Winter Games.
We caught up with Griffin to learn more about her experience on The Bachelor.
Recorder: What prompted you to sign up for The Bachelor?
I was actually approached to do the show by a coworker in my office in West Los Angeles. She walked up to me one day and said literally, ‘Do you want to be on The Bachelor’ and the rest is history! The team originally reached out to me last year and timing was off, so technically, I was supposed to be vying for love on Nick’s season of the Bachelor – good thing I was still single by the time Arie’s came around.
Though in the beginning I was a bit skeptical with this being my first experience dating interracially and having to do so on national television, I decided to give it a go. If you’re familiar with the franchise, the show isn’t known to host a variety of multicultural women, so I thought it’d be a great opportunity to represent for women like myself.
You joined the cast of The Bachelor following a season of The Bachelorette that featured its first Black lead. In her season, she mentioned feeling apprehensive because of her race and feeling like she was being judged by both the Black and white community. Did you ever feel any added pressure on the show due to being a Black contestant?
Absolutely! The question of whether Arie would have interest in dating a Black woman was tough in itself, yet you realize who you are and what you have to offer and if the chemistry is there, those things won’t matter in the end.I’m sure Rachel had the same issue choosing between so many different men. Yet, having instances like this will open the mind to the fact that love has no color, which more people in our day and age need to realize.
You participated in a Demolition Derby. What did you think of that experience?
Let’s just say I was scared for my life! I’d like to think of myself as an excellent driver, so I’m not very skilled at intentionally ramming into other vehicles. So, it’s safe to say I may have forfeited that race.
Do you think true love can be found on reality TV?
I believe love can be found anywhere, even in the grocery store. It’s all about having an open heart and mind.