Bachelor Nation
Susie Evans on Season 26 of 'The Bachelor'

We Need To Unpack Clayton's Angry Bachelor Elimination

It sounds like Clayton is straight-up done with the show.

ABC/John Medland

Welp. Fans knew Clayton Echard’s Bachelor ending was going to be dramatic, but Bachelor Nation was in for some true surprises during the March 8 episode. After a relatively calm beginning of the episode, things started to go off the rails for Clayton during his date with Susie Evans. In fact, things went so awry, their entire relationship went up in flames. What’s more, Susie’s shocking elimination now has Clayton’s entire Bachelor future in question.

Clayton and his final three women traveled to Iceland for the Fantasy Suite dates, and right from the start, Susie was struggling. She said the idea of Clayton forming strong connections with the other women, Rachel Recchia and Gabby Windey, was a “tough pill to swallow.” She explained that while she felt like she was definitely going to receive the final rose, she wasn’t sure about Clayton’s other relationships, and it was making her question everything.

“I’m hoping he takes physical intimacy as serious as I do,” Susie said during the episode. “If I find out that he’s falling in love with other women or that he’s been physically intimate with other women, that would be devastating ... If Clayton thinks it’s me at the end of this and he sleeps with another woman, I would have a hard time moving forward.”

Unfortunately for Susie, this is exactly what happened, as Clayton said the L-word to both Rachel and Gabby on their respective dates, and spent the night with both of them.

ABC/John Medland

Susie struggled as she watched Rachel and Gabby come back from their overnight dates, but after a lot of worry, she finally got her time with Clayton. First, they spent time at a spa switching between hot and cold plunge pools, which Susie said reminded her a bit of the hot and cold moments in her relationship with Clayton.

But it wasn’t until the dinner portion of the date that things got really messy. Clayton told Susie he was in love with her, but Susie told him she couldn’t be with him if he’d told the other women he loved them or been intimate with them. She said if he had, it would be “impossible” to move forward with an engagement. Clayton rightfully chose to be honest with Susie, and he admitted both things had happened, with both the other women. He also told Susie he didn’t want her to give up on them, though, and that he had the strongest feelings about her.

However, Susie said she found the fact that Clayton felt so strongly about her even more heartbreaking, because she didn’t know and she wished he’d “thought through” taking his relationships with the other women to the next level. She said she hadn’t wanted to give him an ultimatum ahead of time, because she had hoped he would have made that decision on his own. Clayton defended himself, saying he was in love with the other women and wanted to explore those relationships fully. He was also upset that Susie hadn’t told him beforehand that she had these boundaries, or else he would have handled the overnight dates differently. Susie then stormed off.

At first, Clayton seemed really sad. “She just tore me apart,” Clayton said to host Jesse Palmer, who materialized out of thin air. “She completely destroyed me.” But then, he became more angry at the fact that Susie hadn’t set this boundary with him before the overnight dates.

When Susie returned, said she should have had a conversation with Clayton about her feelings about intimacy earlier, but that she couldn’t change how she felt about this situation. “I don’t think I can leave here with you,” Susie told him.

“In my eyes, you just invalidated everything we had,” Clayton said. “I would think you would work through something like this.”

At that point, Clayton announced their relationship was over, because Susie was not the person he thought she was, and he walked her out.

“This was real for me,” Susie said, as Clayton silently held the car door open for her to leave. “I promise you, every ounce of this has been real and genuine.”

Even that last statement didn’t move Clayton at all. He told Susie that he’d one day find someone who loved him for him, right before he sent her away. After she left, Clayton announced that his heart wasn’t in it anymore and that he was done with the whole show, leaving fans wondering if he’ll even continue on the show, or if those promos of the upcoming rose ceremony are actually foretelling his elimination of both the remaining women on his season.

Fans will have to stay tuned for when Season 26 of The Bachelor continues on Monday, March 14, at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.