Bachelor Nation
Clayton Echard and Serene Russell on 'The Bachelor' Season 26

We Need To Unpack Clayton's Bachelor Hometown Episode Elimination

Their date went so well!

ABC/John Medland

Things get real once you bring a partner home to meet your family, both IRL and on The Bachelor. It’s either when things start to get serious, or you realize there isn’t going to be a future. Unfortunately for Serene Russell, the latter was true after she brought Bachelor Clayton Echard home to meet her family. Clayton decided to send Serene home after her hometown date, and here’s everything you need to know about her exit.

During the Feb. 28 episode, Serene brought Clayton back to her hometown of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma to meet her parents and her brother. On a previous date, Serene had opened up to Clayton about some loss that her family recently experienced. In the last couple of years, both Serene’s grandmother and her cousin passed away. Her family is still recovering from these losses, but they opened up their home to Clayton to show him what Serene’s personal life is like.

But before Clayton met Serene’s family, she took him to an aerial obstacle course, where they had to traverse a jungle gym suspended almost 100 feet up in the air. In order to get down, they needed to take a literal leap of faith and by free-falling off a ledge. Even though Clayton is *very* afraid of heights, they both made it through.

Next, Serene brought Clayton home to meet her family, including her brother, Roland, who Bachelor Nation fell for in a big way. Fans weren’t the only ones falling, though. After telling her family how “smitten” she was by Clayton, Serene told him that she’s fallen in love with him. Clayton responded by telling Serene that he’d been waiting to hear her say that, but he didn’t say that he reciprocated the feelings, which might have been the first red flag about Serene and Clayton’s future.

In the end, Clayton didn’t give Serene a rose (the final three roses instead went to Gabby Windey, Rachel Recchia, and Susie Evans). As they said their goodbyes, Serene asked what went wrong, since Clayton had said he had no reservations. He answered, “I had to look back and reflect and see where I stand with my heart, and I just have stronger connections.”

As Serene left, she bemoaned the fact that even though she let her walls down with Clayton, it wasn’t enough for them to build a future together. Serene didn’t find her match with Clayton, but there’s always a chance fans will get to see her find love on the beaches of Bachelor In Paradise.

Season 26 of The Bachelor airs Mondays at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.