The Bachelorette alum Trista Rehn has returned to social media and explained her situation after her husband Ryan Sutter upset fans with cryptic posts about her being out of reach.

The Bachelorette's Season 1 star took to Instagram this past weekend and posted a sweet family photo of Ryan, herself and their two children -- son Maxwell, 16, and daughter Blakesley, 14 -- at the beach.


"Geez people. Can't a girl have a nervous breakdown/trial separation/midlife crisis/death/divorce in peace around here?!" Trista joked in the caption of her photo.

"In all seriousness, for those concerned, I'm safe and sound, happy and healthy, in love and grateful. For those who'd rather focus on being critical and searching way too hard for darkness, good luck with that."

Trista went on to explain of her whereabouts recently, "An opportunity for perspective and personal growth presented itself and with the unconditional support of my family and friends, I chose myself and betterment, knowing that my stay-at-home-mom job and my kids end-of-the-school-year needs were in the best, most capable hands."

Over the weekend of May 18, Ryan had uploaded a cryptic post on Instagram suggesting there was something wrong with Trista and that he was missing her, which many fans interpreted to mean that Trista had suddenly died or they decided to separate.

After fans expressed their concern or complained about how Ryan's post was misleading and in poor taste, Ryan took to Instagram again to assure his followers that while Trista was, in fact, "inaccessible," she was doing just "fine" and their relationship was "great."

Ryan -- who hadn't starred on reality TV since The Bachelorette's first season aired in 2003 -- then admitted on May 22 that his family making headlines again "felt good" because it showed him that people still care and wonder about them.

In Trista's Saturday, May 25 post, she defended her husband for choosing to share his feelings with fans about her soul-searching opportunity on social media.

"My stoic husband who usually chooses privacy over posting, decided to share his love for me in messages that would find me in my travels. We look at Instagram like a digital diary," Trista explained.

"Most of the time, the world doesn't pay too much attention. This time, he couldn't say anything right and just about every news outlet picked up his 'cryptic/confusing/attention-seeking/dramatic' pictures and captions."


Trista insisted, however, that Ryan's sweet words to her on Instagram helped her through a difficult time.

"To me, they gave me exactly what my Words of Affirmation love language needed to get me through some serious self doubt and fear... and that's all that matters," Trista noted in her post.

"He doesn't owe anyone any explanation or require permission to post what he wants to post and share what he wants to share. If you want to know the rest of the story, I will share in due time."

But for the time being, Trista said she and Ryan are back to their "regularly scheduled programming -- from a beach in Mexico!"

The Bachelorette alum concluded, "After all, nervous breakdowns and separations require much needed rest and relaxation!"

Trista also posted photos via Instagram Stories of Ryan lounging on the beach in the sun, enjoying his "relaxation era."

In Ryan's initial post, his first of three regarding Trista's condition, Ryan had written, "I really wish I could talk to you. Ask you how you're doing? How was your day. I'd really like to hear your voice -- just for a minute."

"So many times I've called without much to say, not realizing how lucky I was or how much I'd miss the opportunity if it were gone," he elaborated.

"I want to support and encourage and cheer you on. I want to be there for you. But I can't. And that's ok cause I know you need this time -- time to discover yourself again. So I'll be here for you instead. I'll be here when you get back... I'll be here to love you."

"What's going on[?] Are they separated having problems?" one person asked.

"Did Trista die? Omg," another person wrote.

"This sounds like a treatment situation," an Instagram user commented. "They take your phones for a week or so."

And another person scolded Ryan for his initial post, writing, "Ryan I say this with love but a post like this is irresponsible. Everyone immediately panicked. Please just be aware of the message your sending.

In a follow-up Instagram post, Ryan insisted he never meant to "deceive or mislead anyone" and he was just trying to share his thoughts on social media.

"Trista is fine. We are fine. We're great," The Bachelorette alum clarified.

"Trista is at a place in life where she is searching a bit. An opportunity presented itself that may help her on that quest. With her family's support, she has taken it. Part of that process means that she is temporarily inaccessible to us. I miss her."


Days later, Ryan called all of fans' guesses "creative ideas," but he confirmed that none of them were accurate.

Ryan wrote on May 22, "Some thought I was intentionally misleading people in order to somehow benefit from it? It got picked up on entertainment news sites and I started getting texts from friends asking if I was ok. All because I missed my wife and chose to share how that felt."

"It felt weird to wear the clothes of past fame once again, even if only briefly," he admitted.

"It reminded me of how crazy life was and of how grateful I am for the life I have. But, to be honest, it also felt good to know people still cared, and worried and wondered."

Last month, Trista gushed about her husband's strength and ability to overcome adversity on "The Most Dramatic Podcast Ever with Chris Harrison."

Ryan, who won Trista Rehn's final rose on The Bachelorette's first season, was diagnosed with Lyme disease in May 2021 after he'd been suffering from various symptoms for months prior.

Ryan had been desperate for answers after undergoing tests for nearly a year to find out why he had been feeling so ill and fatigued.

Ryan previously explained on Trista's "Better, Etc." podcast how doctors said his body had been weakened from exposure to mold toxins and so he was unable to fight Lyme disease.

Ryan had also reportedly tested positive for COVID-19 during the pandemic in 2020 as well as Epstein-Barr virus, which causes mononucleosis.

Ryan graduated from firefighter training in June 2021, just weeks after revealing his Lyme disease diagnosis in Spring 2021.

Ryan had to take time off from his firefighting job in Denver, CO, to take care of himself, but he returned to work in January 2022 after undergoing two major surgeries.

Trista -- who found fame when she competed on Alex Michel's season of The Bachelor in 2002 -- chose Ryan at the final Rose Ceremony of her The Bachelorette season over runner-up Charlie Maher.

Ryan proposed marriage to Trista on The Bachelorette's first-season finale, which aired on ABC in February 2003 and drew over 30 million viewers.

Trista, a former Dancing with the Stars and Fear Factor contestant, changed her last name from Rehn to Sutter when she married Ryan in December 2003.

Trista & Ryan's Wedding's two-hour finale -- which featured the couple's wedding ceremony and reception at the Lodge in Rancho Mirage resort in Palm Springs, CA -- drew over 17 million viewers when it aired on ABC on December 10, 2003.

Trista and Ryan welcomed Maxwell in July 2007 followed by Blakesley in April 2009.


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About The Author: Elizabeth Kwiatkowski
Elizabeth Kwiatkowski is Associate Editor of Reality TV World and has been covering the reality TV genre for more than a decade.