The Bachelorette's thirteenth season is set to premiere Monday, May 22 at 9PM ET/PT on ABC. (The show will return to its usual 8PM time the following week).
Rachel is a straight shooter and very open about what viewers can expect to see on her season. The 32-year-old Dallas attorney already revealed she found love on the show and is currently engaged! So what else is she willing to share with us?
During a Thursday conference call with reporters, Rachel talked about her The Bachelorette journey, teasing everything from qualities she was looking for in a partner to heartache she experienced along the way.
Below is what Rachel had to tell Reality TV World -- just a portion of her lengthy Bachelorette interview.
Reality TV World: In some seasons past, Bachelorettes experienced heartbreak before picking the right guy at the end, like when a guy chose to leave on his own, for example, like with Desiree Hartsock and Brooks Forester. While you said you left the show happy, in love and engaged, did you have to go through another broken heart to get to that point?
Rachel Lindsay: You'll definitely have to watch the season to see how it plays out, but I will say that it didn't come easy for me. I really felt several strong connections and it was hard for me to get to the point to have my happy ending. And I think you will enjoy watching that play out this season.
Reality TV World: Chris Harrison seems to always teases that every season of The Bachelorette is the most dramatic one yet, and he did it again for yours. How would you say your season compares and contrasts with other Bachelorette editions we've seen? Do you personally think it will be more dramatic? What do you think sets it apart?
Rachel Lindsay: Well, here's the interesting thing. One, I haven't really seen many seasons prior to [Nick Viall]'s. I have seen [Ben Higgins] and a little bit of [JoJo Fletcher]'s seasons. But I don't live in the house with the guys, so I don't know of everything that went on and I will be watching for the first time with everyone else.
But I do have guys with big personalities, and I have a big personality too. So, I believe Chris when he says it's the most dramatic season ever. If I was a betting woman, I would put my money on that.
Reality TV World: When Nick competed on The Bachelorette, he was accused of having the wrong intentions and he clashed with most of the guys on both Andi Dorfman and Kaitlyn Bristowe's seasons. He was labeled a villain, but when you got to know him, you thought he was really sincere. So was it a dealbreaker for you if a guy you were falling for emerged as a villain, if he didn't get along with others?
Rachel Lindsay: You know, for me, I take everything I hear with a grain of salt. So I would want to flush that information out for myself and figure it out. Would it be alarming to me if one of the guys didn't get along with everyone in the house? Yeah! I think that says something. But I would have to see that for myself and not just take that at someone's word.
Also during the conference call, Rachel talked to reporters about the honor of becoming the first black Bachelorette, and much more.
What were you looking for from the guys on Night 1, anything in particular?
Rachel Lindsay: I definitely wanted to be entertained the first night. I wanted the guys to be themselves and I also wanted them to let loose a little bit, you know? It's a nerve-wracking night, so I just wanted them to be comfortable in themselves and have fun.
Do you feel a sense of responsibility being the first black Bachelorette? And if so, did it impact how you behaved during the filming process?
Rachel Lindsay: I do feel a sense of responsibility to, you know, step into this world and be the first. I'm representing myself as an African American woman on a platform that hasn't been done before. So all eyes are going to be on me, you know, they're going to be judging me, giving me their opinions, and I do feel that pressure.
But I also think it's such a humbling and honoring experience that I accept the challenge and I'm more than happy to do it. As far as if it affects how I was on the season, no. At 30 -- I'm 32 now -- I don't know how to be anything but myself. So I was just me, and me being the first, me being black or anything like that didn't affect how I was on the season.
What qualities are you looking for in a husband and future partner? What are some of your expectations the met had to meet in order to get past the first night?
Rachel Lindsay: I like a confident man, not cocky, but very confident -- someone who is self aware, direct, knows who he is, honest, a man who knows where he's going. I love ambition. And someone who is just himself, who can be comfortable around me in such an intense environment.
I was also looking for someone who wanted what I want. I'm ready to start a family. I'm ready to get married, and that was really important to me. I wanted someone who's on the same page as me... [And] I do like height. I mean, I don't discriminate against men who are under six feet, but if they are above six feet, there is definitely nothing wrong with that, especially if they are easy on the eyes.
How did you react when you found out The Bachelorette producers had chosen you for the role?
Rachel Lindsay: When I was approached, I just couldn't believe it! I was like, "Me? You guys want me to do it?!" I was excited, but I was nervous at the same time. But by the time it was announced and we had talked through everything, I was ready.
I was ready to accept the challenge and I was ready to have another opportunity to find love and to actually get what it is that I want so badly for myself. And then. at the same time, the added bonus is that I get to be the first African American person to do it in this franchise, and that's such a beautiful thing to. So I felt really blessed to be able to do both.
How did your family and close friends react to you signing on as the Season 13 Bachelorette?
Rachel Lindsay: They were excited! I mean, my family was a little skeptical as far as -- you know, they know how badly I want this, so they are like, "Is this the way that you're going to find what you want?" But they trust my judgment and want me to be happy, so they are absolutely supportive of me finding love in this manner.
Rachel Lindsay: Oh, I came in thinking I knew how this whole thing was going to go, because that's what I do. I try to figure everything out. And the one thing I couldn't figure out are the men who are going to be walking out of that limo on the first night and how they would impact my life and I would connect with them and how they would affect me overall.
And so, that was what I couldn't prepare myself for and what was so unexpected for me. And it was a beautiful surprise for me, honestly. I really connected with these men. I have such a great group of men.
Rachel Lindsay: Yes, actually, I spoke with [Ali Fedotowsky], she gave me some great advice. She definitely told me to enjoy the experience a lot, but she said, "Take the time to enjoy it for yourself," because she said that's something she didn't do and she wishes that she would have.
And I communicated with JoJo, and she gave me some good advice about being myself and listening to my gut -- and just being open. And I communicated with Andi a bit, and she was just encouraging me throughout the journey and being really supportive. So it was nice to hear from people on The Bachelorette.