'Bachelor' Ben Higgins on Why He’s Still a Romantic, and May Start DM’ing People Soon (Exclusive)
By Lauren Zima
Ben Higgins still believes in love.
The former Bachelor and his fiancee from the show, Lauren Bushnell, split in May 2017, and he hasn't had a serious relationship since. In fact, Higgins tells ET exclusively he's only gone on dates with two women since the pair's breakup.
“I’m not dating," he says. "I would love to tell you I am. I don’t want to make it sound like ‘feel bad for me,’ but I haven’t been dating." But, the 29-year-old is still a self-described "romantic."
"I just still desire it," he says. "I don’t know if that’s healthy or not. I keep pursuing the idea of a romantic experience in my whole life. I believe it can exist; I see it with my family and friends. I’m hoping to have that myself."
The Indiana native has been focusing on his work life, though he says that isn't necessarily why he's single. "I really don’t know what [the barrier] is," he admits. "It’s not that I don’t have an interest or desire or that I’m too busy. I think it’s just either that I haven’t found the right person or haven’t been interested in somebody in a while, I don’t know if there are some deep-seated walls or barriers I’ve put up; I’m sure there are."
One thing Higgins does understand about himself, though, is that he loves bringing people together. To that end, he's launched a new venture called The Wedding Party. The concept is that, to avoid the expenses and stresses of wedding planning, 12 select couples can get married in an intimate ceremony in Denver, Colorado (where Higgins lives), and have one huge party thrown for them. The soiree is open to the public; they can buy tickets to experience the best of local vendors, musicians and food.
“I really am focusing on making the experience intimate and meaningful for the couples," Higgins says of his role. "And then we hope to do this in a couple of locations, highlighting the food and music of the areas. This adds to the wedding experience...even giving a way for people to meet each other. Come for great food, good drinks, music and the ability to come celebrate love!"
Or...come to meet Higgins, who will be on hand for the big day. He may even follow you afterward on Instagram. "I learned at iHeart fest this year that guys DM girls a lot," he reveals. "And that it’s acceptable. I always thought it was weird or creepy or intrusive, but I guess it’s a thing now? So, I’m starting to look into that world. I still have yet to do it, but I have a different view of it. I’ve become more open to it."
Despite being far from a relationship, Higgins knows what he wants. "A commitment, a connection, a partnership," he says. "Life is awesome right now; it’s busy, there’s a ton going on, but the piece that’s missing is that person that knows me best, can call me out and support me when I need it, and I can support them. That person that breaks through the fronts and knows every piece of you. That’s the thing about marriage, commitment and romance that’s most intriguing to me: that somebody. It could only be one person ever in this world, who would know me fully and know every side of me."