'Bachelor' Matt James Says the Show Breaks Him Down '1000 Percent' (Exclusive)  

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Matt James is getting candid about his past and insecurities on The Bachelor. The 29-year-old emotionally opened up about his absent father on Monday's episode of the ABC dating show, but as he recently told ET's Lauren Zima, there's more vulnerability ahead.

In fact, Matt said the show broke him down "1000 percent."

"It really did break me down," he shared. "There were a lot of conversations that I had, that I needed to have that I hadn't had and I wasn't planning on having -- but that's where this whole experience took me and I'm so fortunate for it."

"I grew up as a man and it allowed me to be vulnerable for these women," Matt added.

Fans saw Matt, a commercial real estate broker, discuss on last week's season premiere how his parents' split early on in his life affected him. His lack of an example of happy marital life left him with insecurities about going all in with a partner -- and viewers will learn more about that as the season goes on.

"There's things in my personal life that I try to avoid, which are uncomfortable conversations... conversations about your family, conversations about your feelings," he explained to ET. "Just as a man, that's a hard thing for me to have."

"So when you have to address those things that held you back in relationships past, that kind of emotion comes out," he continued. "I had to address it, and that's how the emotion came out."

While his Bachelor journey changed him, Matt said it didn't have to do with his maturity. The ABC Food Tours co-founder said he was ready to get married and find a partner for life.

"I don't think it's a maturity thing. I think it's moreso me taking ownership of those experiences," he said. "But we'll get into that as the season rolls on, what was holding me back in a relationship."

The Bachelor airs Mondays at 8 p.m. ET/PT on ABC. See more on Matt in the video below.


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