‘The Bachelorette’: How Hannah Brown Handles the Online Hate She Receives

Hannah Brown is used to receiving criticism. Before she became a reality star, she was a pageant queen, after all.

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in a sash. in the city.

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Brown got into pageants because she thought they could help her make an impact, a calling she’s felt since a young age.

“I saw pageants as a way to be a role model. I think that was always very important to me, to live my life by a certain way that I was proud of and to have those opportunities for scholarship,” Brown told Entertainment Tonight. “I have always been an overachiever and competitive and [wanted] to win, but also for something that was going to be impactful for my life, and so I saw doing pageants and scholarships that could be gained from that.” 

Hannah Brown took a break from doing beauty pageants for her mental health–when she returned, she became Miss Alabama USA

Brown started doing pageants when she was a teenager. After competing for several years, she took a break for mental health reasons.

“I was trying to be a version of somebody else,” she recalled. 

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all smiles folks. #alabamahannah #lowqualitybts

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After some reflection, Brown decided to give pageants a go again and that’s when she became Miss Alabama USA in 2018.

“I think that’s when it all changed and I did become Miss Alabama in the USA because I was so candid about where my life had gone, where I had been and where I am now, or, in that moment, now,” Brown explained. “And the judges that allowed me to start this journey — I feel like it started there — saw me for me and let me have the opportunity to serve others.”

How Hannah Brown deals with online hate now that she’s famous

Reality TV stars often say there’s no way to prepare one’s self for what it’s like to become famous on the internet overnight. While people like Bachelor contestants experience such perks as advertising on their social channels for handsome sums of money, they are also often subject to shockingly cruel comments online.

Brown is no exception. The hate she receives on a daily basis is certainly harsher than anything she experienced while in pageants.

“The biggest thing I’ve discovered about myself, now being in the spotlight, is I am so much stronger than I thought I was,” she said. “At first, being on The Bachelor and seeing critical comments of myself, it would crush me, but now it’s like a daily thing. Somebody has said something — or not just somebody, hundreds, thousands of people have something negative to say about me.”

Hannah Brown | VALERIE MACON/AFP via Getty Images
Hannah Brown | VALERIE MACON/AFP via Getty Images

Now, Brown realizes the hate is just something she has to put up with to realize her calling.

“I have learned that if I’m going to continue to do what I’m supposed to do and move forward, then I cannot let that faze me,” she told ET. “And sometimes it still hurts, but I’ve been through a lot this year, and I still have hope of so much more for my life — regardless of the limitations and expectations that people have for me and what people say about me.”

Read more: In a Game of ‘Date, Marry, Disappear,’ Former Bachelorette Hannah Brown Marries Peter Weber