‘The Challenge’: Tori Deal Said She Initially Declined Season 38 for a Mental Health Break

The Challenge star Tori Deal has competed in six seasons, making it to the finals three times. The reality TV personality returned for season 38’s Ride or Dies alongside Devin Walker but recently revealed she initially declined the opportunity because she wanted to take a mental health break.

Tori Deal says she declined ‘The Challenge 38’ for a mental health break

Three-time finalist Tori Deal returned for The Challenge: Ride or Dies alongside fellow six-time competitor Devin Walker.

After opening up about her mental health journey, spurred by the breakup with castmate and three-time champ Jordan Wiseley, her ex unexpectedly entered the house by the end of the second episode.

The two hadn’t seen each other for nearly two years beforehand and attempted to converse about their complicated situation. However, he moved on with rookie Nurys Mateo in front of her, upsetting the reality TV star.

During a live episode of the Challenge Mania podcast, co-hosted by former champ Derrick Kosinski, the Are You the One? star admitted she initially declined the invitation to compete in the current season when a fan asked if she would have teamed up with Josh Martinez. However, the veteran explained she chose to accept after discovering that Devin pitched her as his “ride or die” to the producers. According to Tori, she planned to take a mental health break but is “thankful” she decided to compete.

Tori recently opened up about her mental health journey in ‘The Challenge 38’

Before Jordan arrived at the Challenge house, Tori admitted to Devin that she “was sad for so long” and shared that she began taking antidepressants after consulting with a doctor.

In a confessional, she revealed she “spiraled” after the public breakup with Jordan, leading her to seek help.

After the episode aired, Tori elaborated on her journey in a lengthy Instagram post, admitting she was “suffering in silence” and had grappled with her emotions for most of her life.

According to the veteran, she previously hid it with humor and refused to acknowledge her feelings until realizing that she used her comedy as a cover-up. Therefore, Tori knew she would hit “rock bottom” at some point, which eventually happened following her late 2020 split with Jordan.

Tori began competing on ‘The Challenge’ after ‘Are You the One?’ appearance

After appearing on Are You the One? Season 4 and spinoff Are You the One: Second Chances, the New York native made her debut on Dirty 30.

She had an impressive rookie season, winning four daily challenges, one elimination, and finishing third.

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Following a short-lived appearance on Final Reckoning, she made it to her second finals in War of the Worlds 2, where she came up short.

The MTV star didn’t make it far in Total Madness or Double Agents but won five daily missions and an elimination in Spies, Lies, and Allies on her way to finishing second. Tori has returned for Ride or Dies, hoping to take home her first victory. The Challenge airs Wednesdays on MTV.