The Bachelor SA's Rikki on the backlash: 'One slip up and then you are told you are evil or to go die - it's shattering'

Rikki Brest on 'The Bachelor SA.' (Photo supplied: M-Net)
Rikki Brest on 'The Bachelor SA.' (Photo supplied: M-Net)

In the latest episode of The Bachelor SA, Marc Buckner said goodbye to Rikki Brest.

The TV presenter, drummer, actress and petrolhead had a spark with the 36-year-old from the moment she stepped out of the car onto the red carpet.

In episode 3 she scored some one-on-one time with Marc but in the weeks thereafter she wasn't invited on another date. The 34-year-old's patience grew thin waiting to spend some quality time with Marc.

In the latest episode, Rikki was ready to reject his rose, but instead, Marc sent her home.

Following her exit from the show, she shared a lengthy message on Instagram about her experience on the show. 


View this post on Instagram

I am beyond ecstatic to finally be able to say that I did not receive a rose!! I want to say how unbelievably proud I am of each and every one of the incredible women that took part in this journey. Putting yourself out there to be vulnerable in front of millions of people is scary beyond imagination. It takes more courage than what most people will ever understand. We are strong. We are beautiful. But most importantly, we are all so very brave!! Many people have asked why I did the show, so let's have an honest moment here. I am almost 35 and wasnt meeting anyone. So, instead of sitting around complaining, I decided to send the universe a message that I am ready to meet my person. Every fiber of my being did this with true intentions and for genuine reasons. Why am I so straight forward? I have been through circumstances in my life, that led me to finding my strength. For most of my life I never believed I was worth a grain of sand. But, I have done massive amounts of personal growth work to learn to love myself again. To know that I am worth more than I've ever given myself credit for. Even on the days I don't feel an ounce of it, (and believe me there are many of these days) I force myself to speak as if I do believe it. Therefore, I need to speak my truth. When I left that night, I was very happy to. Watching the show back, I thank my lucky stars I didn't end up with someone that runs at the first sight of a strong woman who isn't scared to speak her mind. Generally I have always believed a mature relationship should be able to handle real conversations where you are able to challenge each other in order to grow. Good looks and a six pack means nothing if your heart is not pure. If your soul can't connect with mine on a deeper level, you are not my person. As much as I would love to find my person, I will never settle. To those that have supported me, I am so grateful for you. Thank you for being so passionate about my journey to find love. I have struggled with the fact that by leaving I am disappointing you, but I hope you will see that this is the perfect way it could have ever worked out for me. Thank you ? #TheBachelorSA #journey #celebrate #happy

A post shared by Rikki Brest (@rikkibrest) on

Marc in turn wrote on Instagram: "I am not going to focus or respond to the negative comments, especially not those that came from someone in the house which I cared for. I am however in support of support but not defamation of character."

This caused an uproar on social media with fans of the show. 

We chat to Rikki about her time on the show, the social media backlash, and find out if she is still looking for love.

For the past few episodes, you mentioned wanting to leave and reject Marc's rose? Why did you end up staying?

I only mentioned in one episode (being this last one) that I was going to reject a rose. The previous episode was the dinner party which became the rose ceremony. At a rose ceremony, the last girl without a rose always goes home, how was I meant to know it was different that night? So, when Marc offered me the rose, I thought it was him just trying to be a people pleaser and not upset me. I don't think anyone who felt they were getting a pity rose would have wanted it, but that doesn't mean I had previously thought about rejecting the rose. The last episode I decided I was leaving regardless, by his choice or mine, I just hoped it was his. I had even written the remaining women a letter during the day to say my goodbyes.

You felt Marc didn't make time for you? Looking back now, how do you feel seeing the episodes and how divided his time was?

After watching the episodes, it's very clear he didn't make time for me other than the 45 min (at a push) of extra time I had after a group date right at the beginning, and nothing after that. How can you know someone with that amount of time? He kept saying he is spending time with the girls he wasn't sure of, yet I got no time, and then he sent me home. If he didn't like me, I wish he would have sent me home earlier.

You and Marc seemed to click in the beginning, why do you think things changed between the two of you as the show progressed?

I think the click, in the beginning, was the kind where you are willing to see where it goes, but I wanted to get to know him to see if there was a real connection. I was only getting 5 minutes at a cocktail party which isn't the right time to have a real conversation. So, I tried to tell him I need time with him. He obviously didn't like that and wasn't understanding my frustration. Between that, and what I was starting to see, the spark died quickly.

Marc Buckner and Rikki Brest on The Bachelor SA.

(ONE ON ONE TIME: Rikki spends some alone time with Marc in episode 3. Photo: M-Net)

In episode 9 you spoke candidly about how you felt about the other women in the house. For example, you said, 'He's going to end up with maybe Jess, who's going to pressure him so much for babies the minute they get off this show.' Do you still stand by these statements after seeing Marc's relationship with the other women unfold on TV?

The editing of that episode was clearly out to make me look bad to lead up to me leaving. I love and respect each and every one of these women, and they know that. The things I said did not attack anyone's character and was taken out of context, and yes, I cried for days over it. I think it needs to be understood that we all had our moments, it's just that mine was shown on TV and not theirs. It also needs to be understood that just because we are on TV does not make us perfect. We are also only human. We were constantly under huge pressure and I guarantee that at some point, everyone would also cave. People are quick to forget that I stayed completely out of the drama the entire time. I believe each and every one of them is capable of the most incredibly loving relationship.

You've also been straight forward on social media and spoken about being with a man who you feel doesn't have a "pure heart". What brought on those feelings?

I wrote my thoughts about Marc which was: "When I left that night, I was very happy to. Watching the show back, I thank my lucky stars I didn't end up with a man that runs at the first sight on a woman who isn't scared to speak her mind."

The rest of it was general and certainly had nothing to do with Marc. He chose to take that personally, and his fans followed. This concept is what I have stood by for many years before The Bachelor was even a thought, my friends and people close to me know that. I don't know Marc's heart, so why would I say it's not pure? I'm not that type of person and don't appreciate being made out as if I am.

Marc Buckner and Rikki Brest on The Bachelor SA.

(IN THE HOT SEAT: Marc and Rikki's last chat before the rose ceremony. Photo: M-Net)

You have gotten some backlash about the things you have said about the other women and your post on social media. How you do feel about that?

I am completely supportive of viewers having their opinion, but, in no way shape or form is it ever okay to ever tear someone down. We never claimed to be perfect. Nobody is. So, it's completely shattering when you embark on a journey to genuinely find love, you have one slip up moment or are edited badly, and then you are told you are evil or to go die. We are the ones being vulnerable in front of millions of people and trust me; it's a scary place to be. Yes, sometimes the pressure gets to us, but that does not mean for one second that we are bad people. It's incredibly disappointing to see how many people find pleasure tearing apart the brave ones, while they sit at home in their comfort zones.

The women were very emotional when you left. Did you form a strong bond in the house with many of them? Are you still in touch?

I did form a bond with most of the women. Although we are not allowed to be in touch until after the show, I am pretty sure I will have many of them in my life forever.

Are you still looking for love?

Yes, I am cautiously so.



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The Bachelor SA season 2 airs Thursdays at 19:00 on M-Net (DStv 101)

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