Gerry Turner went through the emotional wringer during his time as the Golden Bachelor. ET’s Denny Directo spoke to the leading man one day after his season premiere, and he admitted that the journey to find love wasn’t always easy.
“It was much more difficult [than expected], but it was really much better than expected,” the 72-year-old admitted. “I felt like everyday I had to give myself a little pep talk. ‘OK, go out and do the very best you can today.’ And it’s paid off.”
Fans got a peek at that turmoil with a dramatic season preview that showed Gerry — whose high school sweetheart, Toni, died in 2017 — walking out of a confessional interview as he broke down.
“The only time I’ve ever felt worse in my whole life is when my wife passed away, and this is a goddamn close second,” Gerry exclaimed. “I’m done.”
“After Tony passed away, there were many, many dark days. And I keep thinking, “OK, I’m better. I’m to the point where I’m OK,'” he told ET. “And finally, you know I haven’t shared this very much, but it was about three years in and I have a good friend that recommended a grief counselor. So I went and had a couple visits with the grief counselor and the guy told me, ‘You’re OK.'”
The preview also teased that Gerry falls for more than one woman over the course of the season, as it showed him telling the cameras, “I’m seeing it and feeling it with more than one person.”
Gerry confirmed as much to ET, revealing, “I’m down to two people and realize that one of those two has to go home. When you’re down to the last two people over that amount of time and that much investment, you really have strong feelings for them even though you know they’re not the right person. They are so close to it.”
He added, “You’re connected so deeply and then you realize they have to leave. It’s, oh my god, it was an incredibly bad situation.”
While Gerry would neither confirm nor deny if he got his happy ending, he did speak about the pressure of being the leading man on the show.
“You have to be genuine but you get in a moment when it’s almost as if you fall in love with the concept of being in love,” he said. “And it’s like, yeah, I want to be there. And the excitement and the glamour of a moment and all the energy, all of a sudden you feel it. And then the next day, when you sort it out, you go, ‘Oh geez, that wasn’t the authentic feeling that I was looking for.'”
As for what the rest of the season has in store for fans, Gerry quipped that he kisses more than he cries.
The Golden Bachelor airs Thursdays on ABC. Follow along Gerry Turner‘s journey for love with ET’s coverage of the show.
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