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'The Bachelor' recap: Ben Higgins blindsides and dumps Jubilee Sharpe during group date in Mexico


By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 02/01/2016 

The Bachelor star Ben Higgins eliminated Jubilee Sharpe during Monday night's broadcast on ABC.

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Ben sent Jubilee, a 24-year-old war veteran from Fort Lauderdale, FL, home during a group date in Mexico because he didn't believe their connection was getting stronger. She seemed to put a wall up as the competition intensified, and Ben just couldn't deal with her hot and cold demeanor. 

"Getting my heart broken was one of my biggest fears, and now, my heart hurts. I knew it was going to happen," Jubilee said following her ouster. "We just didn't work out, I guess. It happens. I would have loved him unconditionally. I'm, like, the most unlovable person in the world right now."

The Bachelor broadcast began with Ben and his remaining bachelorettes flying to Mexico City for the next round of dates.

After the girls checked into the Four Seasons Hotel, a Date Card revealed Amanda Stanton would be going on the first one-on-one date of the week. She was on Cloud 9 because she felt it was necessary to get to know Ben better in order to justify whether it made sense for her to stay on the show and be away from her two young daughters.

"There is no doubt in my mind that I love Ben. He doesn't validate people the way he validates me. I think our love language is reserved for us," Olivia Caridi said in a confessional.

Olivia didn't think Ben wanted a woman with children already, so she didn't think Amanda was right for the Bachelor.

At 4:20AM, Ben crept into the girls' hotel and woke them all up. He was excited to see the girls in their element, sleeping and with no makeup on. Lauren Himle was horrified because she was wearing a retainer, and Ben asked the girls whom a weave belonged to, which was also embarrassing. Ben, however, told the cameras the girls all looked beautiful. Amanda looked especially amazing in her natural state.

Once Amanda left for her date, Olivia told Lauren H. that if she were Ben, she'd run in the other direction from Amanda and her kids.

Ben ended up taking Amanda on a hot air balloon ride over the ancient city of Teotihuacan, Mexico. It was a really romantic trip and the couple kissed while soaring in the air. Amanda told Ben that he always made her feel comfortable, and Ben just liked being around her. Ben wondered if they could have something together that would last, and Amanda still felt she had more to tell Ben. Amanda needed to share how her last marriage fell apart.

Meanwhile, Ben's other bachelorettes were jealous that Amanda received the longest date of the season thus far. The next Date Card then arrived and revealed Jubilee, Becca Tilley, Joelle "JoJo" Fletcher, Caila Quinn, Emily Ferguson, Lauren Bushnell, Jennifer Saviano, Leah Block and Olivia would be sharing a group date with the Bachelor.

That meant Lauren Himle would get Ben all to herself for a one-on-one date, and Olivia was frustrated because she felt like she "needed Ben," not just "wanted" him.

Back on Ben and Amanda's dinner date, Amanda dove into the secrets of her past. Amanda explained she got married when her first child was six-months-old and there were always red flags. Her ex-husband battled addictions, wasn't very nice to her and cared more about spending time with his friends than he did his family. Once Amanda became pregnant with their second child, she found out he had been dating other girls and cheating on her.

Amanda gave her ex so many chances, but he didn't want to change. She wanted it to work for her kids, but it just wasn't happening. She dreamt of a "perfect family" and even felt embarrassed about being a failure in her relationship, but she insisted to Ben she had taken marriage very seriously and tried hard to make it last. She didn't want Ben to feel weird about it, and he didn't. Ben understood marriage was still extremely special to Amanda, and he admired how much adversity she had overcome in her life.

Ben told Amanda, because she was so incredible, it didn't make sense how someone like her could be interested in dating him. Ben admitted in a confessional that Amanda is so deserving of being loved and it would be so great to be the guy to give that to her. The Bachelor could absolutely envision a future with her, and on that note, he offered Amanda a rose.

"Ben isn't scared by my past and my life. He's such a great guy and makes me feel so good. As hard as it is being away from my kids -- and I miss them so much -- it's worth it for me and for them, because I am falling for Ben," Amanda explained in a confessional.

The next day, Ben embarked on the group date, and the girls were vicious with desire to spend time alone with him. The girls took a Spanish language lesson and practiced telling Ben they loved him, as he practiced telling the girls he wanted to kiss them or marry them. Jubilee was angry and insecurities were ranging inside of her. She took little jabs at Ben here or there, and the other girls certainly noticed.

For the second portion of Ben's group date, the girls cooked a little Mexican food at Carbon restaurant. The bachelorettes participated in a cook-off, but to make things more difficult, the instructions and ingredients were all in Spanish. The women had to split up into pairs, and someone got to work with Ben. Both Olivia and Jubilee fought for Ben, but a coin flip determined Olivia the winner.

Becca acknowledged Olivia's time with Ben was like a mini one-on-one, and she couldn't help but be jealous of that. The couple shopped for food together and fed each other little samples of things. Emily snapped by telling the cameras Ben wanted Olivia to try mint because her breath was horrible.

Meanwhile, at the Four Seasons, Lauren H. officially got her Date Card. She couldn't wait.

Back on the group date, Ben said he loved to cook so it was interesting to see the ladies work their way around the kitchen. Ben could sense Jubilee was holding back on having fun, and she wasn't trying to claim otherwise. Jubilee confessed it was hard to be competing against so many women for Ben's heart, attention and affectionate.

Jubilee and Lauren B. won the challenge. Their dish was so good that the owners of Carbon restaurant said it needed to be on their menu.

That night, although she had been partners with Ben all day, Olivia pulled Ben aside for some alone time before anyone else. Jubilee wondered if Ben noticed her or even knew she existed. It was hard to watch him make connections with other people. Ben told Lauren B. he felt like he never wanted their first one-on-one date to end, and they made out in the street for a very long time -- long enough to make the other women question where they went.

Jubilee was pissed off and disappointed Ben waited so long to approach her. She wouldn't even hold Ben's hand when he tried to grab it. Jubilee admitted she always felt overshadowed by the other bachelorettes and their one-on-one date already felt so long ago. She questioned if Ben remembered what they had and he assured her that their time together was important to him.

Ben, however, couldn't tell Jubilee he was confident in a future with her because she was already pulling back. It didn't make him feel good that she rejected his hand. Ben was confused because he had a connection with her, but he worried they weren't moving forward. Jubilee asked Ben not to end their relationship over it because she had a tendency to overthink things.

Ben then really opened up to Jubilee, saying that because of how his other relationships had progressed, it would be unfair to tell her something real existed between them at this point. The Bachelor flat out confessed they lost what they had and it was best to say goodbye. Ben walked Jubilee out as she started to cry.

Ben also broke down into tears for the first time this season -- a sincere bawling session outside before he re-entered the party. Once he returned to the girls, JoJo asked to speak with him and comforted him. Ben felt comfortable and confident with JoJo. Her reaction reminded him that all the pain was going to be worth it in the long run.

That night, Ben gave the rose to Olivia because they had reconnected after she struggled for a bit. JoJo was shocked and didn't see that move coming. Everyone was pretty much blindsided, and Emily said Olivia didn't deserve to be on the show or with Ben.

The following day, Ben and Lauren H. tried on clothes in a designer's store and learned they'd be attending Fashion Week. Ben thought Lauren H. was beautiful, caring, sweet and goofy. He really enjoyed her sense of humor. While the bachelorette was already excited just to be there, she quickly learned she'd be modeling in the show along with Ben. They were both taken aback by the news and nervous.

Lauren B. worried about how she'd stand out amongst all the stunning, tall models, but Ben told her that she was the most beautiful woman there. It quickly became the best day of her life, and Ben agreed it was awesome.

That night, Ben wanted to figure out if he had a bond with Lauren H. that could last because their relationship was a slow burn. He needed to determine if they were more than friends. Lauren H. revealed she had been in a relationship for four years with her first love and they even lived together. She moved across the country to be with him but he broke up with her out of the blue. Lauren H. admitted he had been cheating on her with three girls, one of whom was her friend.

Lauren H. chose to be happy rather than dwell on her past and be guarded with men. She bounced back from the negative situation a better person, and now she's ready to be with someone. The Bachelor saw a new side of her and only became more attracted to her. Lauren H. said it was a special moment because Ben really got her, and then he gave her the date's rose. Ben acknowledged they set a foundation of honesty and openness.

"I definitely am falling in love with Ben. I haven't felt this way in a really long time, and I'm just excited to know that it's possible and that I can fall in love with somebody again. This is hands down one of the best days I've ever had, because this one-on-one could be the first real date I have with my husband. I just feel so lucky and happy," Lauren H. said in a confessional.

Once it became time for the cocktail party, Ben promised JoJo he wouldn't blindside her, and Lauren B. told Ben she could see "a life" with him. When Amanda was talking about her daughters, Olivia commented that it felt like she was watching an episode of Teen Mom. Amanda was extremely offended and confused. Olivia cried and said she'd try to be better around the girls because she didn't mean any harm, but no one was buying it.

Just as Ben believed all the women were authentic and on the show for the right reasons, Emily was ranting about how fake, rude and selfish Olivia happened to be. Emily then grabbed Ben for a chat and explained how Olivia was disrespectful and fake. She questioned whether she was the right person for Ben if he was truly interested and invested in Olivia. Emily bawled and Ben knew she wouldn't just make something up to be catty.

Ben realized he might know a different Olivia than the girls knew. Ben thought he knew where he stood with Olivia but he just grew confused again. Emily felt bullied and manipulated by Olivia, hoping she wouldn't do the same to Ben. Olivia then got some alone time with Ben and offered him a ring. Ben told the cameras if someone was causing Emily pain, she wasn't the girl for him.

Ben asked the other girls for clarification, and everyone agreed Olivia was the problem. Ben feared he might be falling for someone he really didn't know at all. When host Chris Harrison arrived and announced it was time for the Rose Ceremony, Ben asked to talk to Olivia first. The girls gossiped about whether Ben was going to take her rose away.

The episode concluded on a cliffhanger. So until next week Bachelor Nation!


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