If you've been watching 'The Bachelor' this season, you are more than familiar with the Taylor vs. Corrine plotl ine. Taylor is a mental health specialist from Seattle and Corinne operates her family's company in Miami. Both were contestants on this season of the phenomenally (and kind of unbelievably) successful show, and they did NOT get along. Corinne was portrayed as a young, emotionally immature and spoiled party girl and Taylor as an entitled, condescending elitist. Knowing television, everyone watching was aware that in real life - this wasn't necessarily who these women were. But that's how they were portrayed, so that is how millions of people watching think of them.
After her commitments with the show were done (the 'Women Tell All' episode was taped in February), we wanted to catch up with Taylor, who lives in Seattle, to see what was real, what was 'TV', and what she is really like IRL.
Seattle Refined: So, you may not know this - but we [Seattle Refined] actually hosted the Bachelor Casting Call last year at Pacific Place. Is that where you tried out?
Taylor Nolan: I was at that casting call! I’d put in an application online, very basic demographics and photo. And then they called me next morning to tell me about Seattle casting call, telling me they’d love for me to try to make it. So I went to that. And then it just snowballed from there.
Why did you want to be on the show?
My family and I have watched [the show] for years. And it was actually JoJo’s premiere episode - my stepdad had just gotten back from a Mariners game and had a few drinks - and the casting commercial came up and they were all like 'Taylor, oh my gosh, you have to do it, you have to do it.' They wouldn’t leave me alone about it, like all night! And then I was like, you know it’s kind of the best timing in my life to do something crazy like this. Why not, it’s probably not going to happen, there’s so many people that apply for this. Then once I was able to see it was actually a possibility, I was kind of like - well, it’s in alignment with some of the things I’m focusing on in my life like vulnerability, dating and putting yourself out there in new and different environments, so it just kind of all went from there.
How soon did you know the Bachelor was going to be Nick?
Not for a while actually. Because the casting call was in June and they didn’t announce him until August something. So I was actually, officially accepted before they announced it was Nick.
Did you want it to be Nick? Or at the beginning were you thinking it would be Luke or Chase (like the rest of #BachelorNation)?
I thought it was going to be Luke and thought [us together] probably won’t happen. I thought I’d stay for a few weeks but realistically would he and I date in the real world? Probably not. And my mom and I would joke, that Luke and I probably wouldn’t work out but maybe I could go on Paradise and meet Nick. And then it ended up being Nick so we were excited and looking forward to it, because I thought he was someone I would connect with.
Was your first night in the house the first time you met all the other contestants, or did you try to seek each other out before to size up competition?
During the casting weekend, some girls bumped into each other. The handlers work really hard, and the producers, to make sure none of us interact before getting in the limo the first night. So a lot of the girls actually, I mean I think I maybe saw Whitney once in the elevator, I peeked over and I thought it was Whitney, but other than that, you’re in the hotel by yourself. You see producers and when you’re getting ready to go down the first night you meet the girls who are in your limo, then it’s just a madhouse from there.
Was that the most nerve-wracking part, the first night?
Yeah, probably. My experience had a lot of nerve-wracking moments, but the first night for sure. Because you’re in the hotel for three days cut off from everything. And all this built up anticipation. Right before going down for the limo, I was cleaning out my hotel room and spilled salad dressing down my dress and needless to say I was a total mess about it. But it’s very scary the first night, going into it.
Speaking of dresses - all the women seem to have an unlimited supply of gowns! Do they provide them, or do you have to bring your own?
The only thing they provide is for the final two - then they give you an assortment of dresses to pick from. Other than that you have two suitcases you have to pack everything in. For cold weather, hot weather, athletic wear, cozy wear - for everything. So lots of girls spend a lot of money for that. I brought a lot of clothing I already had and then shopped Forever 21 so I got most of my stuff for fairly cheap. Some friends gifted some outfits to me.
Do you do your own hair and makeup too?
The first night they have a hair and makeup artist to touch you up throughout the night, but after that you’re on your own and the girls help each other out. Dominque is phenomenal at makeup, so she did some of the makeup for some of the girls in the rose ceremonies. Danielle M., who I am really close with, did my hair for some of the stuff. But the girls really help each other out with clothes, hair and makeup. You are kind of on your own with it.
What was the best and worst part of the whole experience for you?
One of the best parts, 100%, was meeting all the women. The friendships you gain from the show are unlike any other I have in my life. So I am incredibly thankful for those. Hopefully only one of us is going to find love with the lead, so I’d say the best scenario from leaving the show is leaving with at least two close friends you can really say are true friends who are like family. One of the worst parts of the show… I would say there’s a lot of stress. Being cut off from friends and family is really tough. You don’t have TV, you don’t have music, which is really tough for me because I love music and I’m always singing and I’m always dancing. So not having any music was really tough.
Even pool parties?
Yeah, the pool parties. Even when you’re getting ready there’s no music. Even the first group date, I got to drive and I was like yes, I get to drive and jam out. And still no music because they have the mics and the audio and they don’t have the license to show the songs and everything. But I think one thing that everyone who’s on the show, no matter what happened while they were on the show, one of the hardest parts is being vulnerable and that exposed to all of America and the world, frankly because people all over the world watch the show, is dealing with everyone’s opinions on what was shown about you. That’s definitely the hardest part.
Would you go back and do it again?
It’s so crazy. There are so many reasons to not. But there are so many reasons to go back. I think it really depends on where you are at in your life and what you’re looking for. And I know for me, being vulnerable and pushing myself to have connections with different people is at the forefront of my values and my goals in life. So, this experience really captures all of that, as tough as it is. So I think I probably would for that reason. You learn so much about yourself, about how you interact with other people, just, I’m a big observer and people watcher, so even just watching other people interact. It’s just a social experiment. It’s very interesting to watch and you learn so much.
So when you look back on your experience and you look at someone like Becca or even Nick, who went back to be a contestant again, would you do that? Would you consider something like Bachelor in Paradise?
Doing what Becca or Nick did, in Kaitlyn’s season, would really depend on who the person was for me I think. Because Bachelor and Bachelorette is much more serious and dramatic than Paradise. Paradise is a lot more relaxed, people have more fun with it, it’s conducive to actual dating in real life as opposed to Bachelor and Bachelorette.
Have you been approached for Bachelor in Paradise?
They essentially start the casting process again. No one is officially contracted or officially invited to come. They just sort of start casting process over again for some people.
Do you know the outcome of this season?
I basically know but I can’t say anything.
Did you see Raven and Vanessa as the final two?
So what was shown… I think everyone bases weight on the order of limo exits. And what was aired was different from what happened. So I think, I was in a limo with both Raven and Vanessa and I think shortly into the experience, it becomes very clear who has connections with Nick and who doesn’t. I will say I think I underestimated Raven in the beginning. I love her to death, she’s an amazing person. She’s absolutely hilarious. But I don’t think that I necessarily saw that one coming. Vanessa, I 100% saw coming and she’s someone I got really close to in the house. I think they both have really deep connections with him, it’s just different.
How has this affected your career and trying to be a normal person now?
It’s very strange because I still see myself as a normal person - I’m just Taylor. But I see other people’s reactions to me when they meet me and I’m like 'Whoa! Whoa! No, it’s ok, I’m just like you'! In a way that’s been nice because I’ve been able to meet so many more people perhaps I may have not met had I not been on TV. My career has been impacted in a few different ways. I’ve gotten a lot of requests. I have an ad on PsychologyToday.com and through my business website. It’s tough because there are some legitimate people who really want help that are reaching out to me, and then there are some fans who want to use it as a way to meet me, and there’s some who are just being very critical and sending hate mail. It’s been kind of difficult to screen through who I should see and who I shouldn’t see. And it sucks because I have to question people’s intentions in reaching out for help. So I’ve kind of taken a pause on it too because of doing stuff like this, doing interviews, and take advantage of other opportunities that come up from the show. It’s impacted my life in so many different ways, so much more than I would have thought going into it.
What about some of the negative feedback you’ve received?
At 'Women Tell All' when I’m discussing how the show has negatively impacted my life and my career, it’s tough because the language people use on television continues online. And when you have a platform on national TV, you’re in a way perpetuating certain comments throughout America and online. So, I’ve definitely gotten some hateful things online, which a lot of the girls have, mine just happen to be… more about my professional life, which is really unfortunate because I was not on The Bachelor as a counselor. None of the girls there were my clients. So no one really has any credibility to judge my professionalism as a counselor based on what happened on the show. I think a lot of the times when people are in any kind of healthcare position, struggle with balancing work and personal life. I do identify as a helper but that’s not who I am 100% of the time. That’s what I was getting at at Women Tell All that unfortunately that’s impacted that part of my life.
If you could go back and do anything differently, would you?
Part of me says no because I did the best I could with everything that happened and trusting my gut that I did what I thought was best. The other part of me reflects and says, 'yeah, there are definitely things I could have done differently' and I think if I were to do the experience again I’d maybe spend more time getting to know the other girls. The first two weeks, I got really close with Vanessa and Danielle M. and just sort of stuck with them and didn’t really put myself out there with the other girls. Then again, it’s tough to say if I would do that because you don’t connect with everyone and you don’t need to force that especially when you’re there focusing on having a relationship with the guy you’re all dating. I think I struggle, going back and forth between maybe had I said less, had I not been as transparent and open with the things that I was experiencing that maybe I wouldn’t have ended up on the two on one, maybe I would have had a different experience, but then the other part of me says maybe that was just supposed to be my path. And going into the experience, I didn’t look at it like this is going to be a dramatic TV show. I looked at it as this is going to be one of the craziest experiences ever of me being the most vulnerable I could ever possibly be. And in order to walk away from this happy with myself, I have to be as open, and honest and transparent and authentic as I can possibly be. And I think that what’s hard watching it back is you don’t see all of that. It’s not always black or white. There’s a lot of gray area in there. And then I’m reminded it’s a TV show and there are things that have to line up in order to make the storyline make sense. So I think part of that is disappointing that it’s a one-dimensional character of who I am.
For several episodes it was the plot line of you versus Corrinne. Are you disappointed with the edits producers made or do you understand that this is just how TV happens?
I’m at a point where I understand it is how it is and that is TV. It’s very strange to watch back because I didn’t realize things were that dramatic. But I didn’t see her ITMs [In The Moment interviews], I didn’t see what she was saying in her interviews. So, seeing her reactions to things did reaffirm, 'Wow, it really was intense'. It really was that dramatic. I wouldn’t necessarily say anything about the edit except for there’s so much that happens and they have to condense it to an hour and 45 minutes or whatever. And they’re picking what makes the most sense for what happens.
Can you tell us about the alcohol situation?
Our season was actually one of the heaviest drinking seasons, the producers told us. We did turn up quite a bit. But another piece that will give people insight into my experience is that I actually don’t drink alcohol at all. So I was the only person in the house who was 100 percent sober 100 percent of the time. And there were a lot of situation where girls were really drunk. It’s a stressful environment. Sometimes you’re just bored and a drink is readily available. And, unfortunately it’s how a lot of people in our society cope with stress. So, it made sense and it definitely contributed to some of the drama you see, and perhaps the nap taking. But yeah, there’s a lot of that.
Do they feed you? We don’t see food ever.
There’s a big grocery list at the mansion. People write down ingredients they want. And there’s a fridge. They actually have a nice kitchen in the mansion, a huge gas stove. Danielle L. cooked a lot. And then when you travel, they have granola bars and snacks. And on the night portion of the dates, they have some kind of food set out at the table so while Nick is having time with a girl, the rest of us are just sitting there eating and answering questions.
When Corrine got the bouncy house, did you guys get to play with it afterward?
No. I think Jasmine had actually asked, 'Can I go in the bouncy house?' and people were not letting her. It was like - no one was allowed in the bouncy house.
You can go eat and drink but you can’t go in the bouncy house.
That actually happened the first night when Lacey came in on a camel and they used my face for Alexis coming in the shark/dolphin thing. And I was like, 'can I go pet the camel. I want to pet the camel, I want to hang out with the camel'! And they said no.
Noted, ask for something really cool.
Producers will do what they can, they give you opportunities to show who you are.
What was your last interaction with Corrine? Where do you stand?
My last interaction is basically what you see at Women Tell All. Actually, you don’t see all that happens at Women Tell All. I would say things are fine. I mean, I feel like I have a much better understanding and acceptance of who she is after seeing more of her on the show and off the show. Are we best friends, do we text each other every week? No. I don’t have any sort of resentment or negative feelings toward her. I think there’s a lot there and it’s not for me.
I think a big thing we learned here was that she drinks, and you don’t. Looking back at your interactions now as a sober person communicating with an intoxicated one - that puts it in a different perspective.
Exactly. I think you see on Women Tell All we communicate very differently. There’s nothing bad or positive about that. 30 women in a house, and some of you are going to connect and some are not, and that’s totally fine. She’s not someone I click with and at times she can be very entertaining, but there are times she can be a little nasty and I don’t appreciate that, so it’s just, we’re different people. We have very different lifestyles.
How did you feel when, on 'Women Tell All', you ended up apologizing to her, but you didn't get an apology back?
I felt a little disappointed, honestly. Women Tell All was very emotional for me because there was a lot of anticipation leading up to it and I knew there were going to be a lot of hurtful things said, specifically in the area that hurts the most which is my profession and being attacked for that. That’s where the emotion was coming from and I did apologize because there were some things I didn’t like hearing myself say and I could understand where that would have been hurtful. One thing that I say at Women Tell All and that I said in Wisconsin that you don’t get to see any of was the conversation she and I had in Wisconsin was over two hours long. And throughout that conversation, I consoled her and I apologized many times because I could tell she was misinterpreting what I was saying and really not actually listening to the words I was using. And hearing what she wanted to hear. So, at Women Tell All I felt this was another opportunity to reiterate what I was saying in Wisconsin, you know that I don’t necessarily think you’re a bad person and I’m sorry I said these things that hurt you and I wasn’t really being open minded to you. And it did suck that she couldn’t express any kind of empathy or really accountability or acknowledgement of the things she said and the impact her actions had on all of us in the house. But again, I think that just speaks to, again the things I was saying about her on the show and just how we are very different. I think I just kind of have to leave it as having an acceptance to who I know her to be and just leaving it at that because fortunately it’s not like we live in a house together and have to date the same guy again…hopefully. I don’t know. I don’t know. Women Tell All was very emotional, very tough.
You touched on this briefly earlier, but what’s next for you? What do you see life in Seattle, if you’re in Seattle looking like?
I hope I’m still in Seattle in the future. Seattle has always felt like home, so I love it here. I would really like to, over the next few months, get back to seeing clients at my private practice. But other than that, just also taking advantage of opportunities that come up from the show, doing stuff like this, getting to network with different people in the community. I’m working on some projects with Runway to Freedom, which happens here in Seattle, a fashion charity event supporting awareness of domestic violence survivors. And just getting involved in more stuff like that both in Seattle and outside. Because now I have this platform, where I can talk about things like Runway to Freedom and other causes that are really important to me. So, I’m looking forward to that in the future and who knows, maybe Paradise, maybe not. I don’t know.
Are you ready to date? Are you at the point to meet people and go out?
Yeah. Definitely open to that. I was on a date last weekend. So yeah, I love dating, it sucks sometimes it's like - why am I doing this? But I love getting to know people and hearing people’s stories and finding new ways to connect with people, so I’m definitely open to dating. I like beards and I like guys who can challenge me and have really awesome conversations. So yeah, I’m definitely open to that. I’m still processing everything that’s happened with the show, so how emotionally available I am currently I’m not so sure. But definitely open to forming new friendships and stuff.
If you went to Paradise, is there any guy you’d be excited to see?
I think there’s a few. I mean, I’ve met some people already and they’ve all be super awesome. So I think there’d be some people who are just friends who are guys who’d I’d be yay, I’m so happy you’re here. And who knows, maybe we would date in that environment, I don’t know. But I’m also looking forward to seeing what guys Rachel has on her season because those are also guys who would be on Paradise and I hear they are (thumbs up). Like Astrid said, we’ll take Rachel’s leftovers.