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Tayshia Adams

Source: ABC/Kwaku Alston / abc

Tayshia Adams is as bright, light-hearted and laid back in conversation as her sunny Southern California upbringing might suggest. The 30-year-old has a warmth that resonates even through our Zoom connection, so it’s no surprise that she would have many a suitor vying to win her heart on the latest season of The Bachelorette. Adams is only the second Bachelorette of color since the show’s inception, and her starring role this season comes as a result of a bit of drama.

Initially, Clare Crawley — another Bachelor fan favorite — was lined up to find the love of her life on the show. She did, but that happened only two weeks into production. This was great news for Crawley and her beau Dale Moss, but The Bachelorette was abruptly left with no actual bachelorette. Adams, a divorcee, was already a part of the franchise in two different turns, including during the 23rd season of The Bachelor and as part of Bachelor in Paradise’s sixth season. She walked away from both experiences without love. So when Crawley exited The Bachelorette early, Adams received the call to step in, and hopefully, find the happily ever after she’s desired.

So she’s back again, but this time Adams is the one doling out the roses and calling the shots. We talked with her about whether or not she was hesitant to join The Bachelorette after her previous Bachelor experiences, the role her faith plays in how she dates, if she has luck with dating off-camera, and finding love again, in such an unconventional way, after divorce.

MadameNoire: What would you say was your main source of encouragement in looking for love after having been married at a young age? Particularly, finding love on TV — that part has to be tricky.

Tayshia Adams: I think it took me a while to feel that I deserved to find love like that again and that I would find it. And I guess when I did get that confidence back, my whole mentality was like, “Why not?” You know what I mean? No matter how you find love… if you find it, you find it and you’re happy. Everybody’s journey is different and that’s just how my journey went and it took a lot of prayer, but I felt good about it so like, “Why not?”

You’re pretty open about being a woman of faith. The conversation in certain circles online suggests that religion should be included as a “first date question.” Like: “So how often do you go to church?” What are your thoughts on that?

I don’t know that I would prompt it like that but yeah, I definitely don’t hide my faith. I just speak about it how I normally would. And if I happen to mention it like, “You know, on Sundays I go to church…” I don’t hassle them down like, ”Do you also go? How often? Do you stay for the entire [service]? Blah, blah, blah.” But it’s just a normal conversation and if it comes out, it comes out. I don’t think necessarily that it’s a first date question but I think that guys usually know that I’m a woman of faith on the first date because I say it on my own.

As far as preferences, could you be with a guy who identifies as spiritual? Or does he specifically have to be Christian?

Absolutely. I think that being a spiritual person is good on its own, but I think that I have an idea of how I wanna raise my kids. I have an idea of the growth that I’d like to make in my own faith and what part I want that to play in my marriage. I think that if that doesn’t align in that aspect especially as it relates to children then maybe you’re just not the person for me. But I think that being spiritual is an amazing thing. It’s definitely attractive.

Your first time on The Bachelor was during Season 23 and you were eliminated towards the very end, but here you are as the bachelorette this year. Were you at all disenchanted after the way things panned out initially?

I think what I really took away from The Bachelor was really knowing what I had to offer and being confident in the sense that I’m a woman with a lot to offer and I deserve to find a love that isn’t like anything I’ve had before. A love that I’ve seen previously in my life. So I don’t think it left a bad taste in my mouth. It didn’t work out but I didn’t think that was the end-all be-all. I think it was a great experience because it led me to saying yes to being the bachelorette. But yeah, sure, there’s always gonna be a little bit of hesitation, of course. I’m human. What if you don’t find your person? What if you do? But I think that if there’s anything I took away from Bachelor it was self-confidence and believing in myself, so I think that’s a good takeaway.

Tayshia Adams

Source: ABC/Craig Sjodin / abc

Clare Crawley was slated to star as this season’s bachelorette, then she fell in love and opted to leave the show. Still, the participants were already vetted and set for production. How awkward was it to step in and date these guys that were “meant” for Clare?

So, the guys were there for [Clare] this season on The Bachelorette but that’s not always the case, so yeah it did feel a little weird thinking that the guys knew it was going to be her and now I’m coming in and they have no idea it’s gonna be me. It’s a complete surprise. But I think those conversations that we had night one: “Do you want to stay? Do you want to be here? How do you feel?” Like, checking in mentally to see where they were. And I think every single guy started that conversation and said that they were so excited that I was there so we could start our journey.

Describe the worst date you’ve ever been on, generally speaking.

My worst date? This is gonna be such a bummer, but I don’t date. I really don’t. And to be honest with you, sometimes guys ask me out on dates but not really. I can’t tell you the last time I was asked out on a date and I don’t know why that is. Usually when I go out it’s with my girlfriends. I don’t really have the desire to talk to any guys. Maybe that’s what it is. It takes a really confident guy to come out to a girl, start a conversation and ask her out. I don’t know. It’s weird. I haven’t been asked out on many dates.

That’s interesting. Do you think you may be a little intimidating?

No? I think I’m a pretty approachable person. Maybe because I’m really comfortable when I’m out and about. I’m with my friends. I laugh, I’m kind of just doing my own thing always and maybe that could be a little intimidating because I’m not just like, silent and sitting there. I would think people could see on the show that I’m pretty personable.

How would you suggest finding love? It’s already tough, but in these times of COVID-19 it’s seemingly impossible…

That’s hard advice. I know everyone’s like “these are unprecedented times,” but before I became the bachelorette, I wasn’t doing much either. I’d never been on a dating app before but I was considering going on [one]. And I think it’s just because as humans, we crave that human interaction, we crave someone to spend life with. I wish I had better advice. I don’t know! But dating apps are probably the best way to go about it. Putting yourself out there is always the first step. You always have to remember that it’s not always gonna be roses. There is heartbreak and it takes a lot for both ends. You just have to continue to put yourself out there and give it a try. You never know until you try right?

Two special nights of The Bachelorette air MONDAY, DEC. 14 AND TUESDAY, DEC. 15 on ABC.

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