Hannah Brown on 'Courageous' Demi Burnett's Coming Out During 'Bachelor in Paradise' Premiere (Exclusive)

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Demi Burnett came out as queer on Monday's season six premiere of Bachelor in Paradise, and Hannah Brown couldn't have been more supportive. 

"I'm so proud of Demi," Brown told ET at ABC's Television Critics Association summer press tour on Monday. Burnett opened up to her about her sexuality in her intro video for Monday's episode. 

"I have been seeing someone. Plot twist, it happens to be a woman," Burnett told Brown on the premiere, but noted that she and the woman weren't exclusive. "I feel like I don't have to proclaim I am gay, I am straight, I'm bisexual… I like who I like." 

Burnett, who first appeared on Colton Underwood's season of The Bachelor, will be a part of the first same-sex relationship to be featured on a Bachelor franchise show. "I am proud of just how strong of a woman that she is, and how she is so brave to be able to kind of step into the unknown that the Bachelor franchise has never really put on display," Brown told ET. "She is being so courageous to tell her truth, and to show all different sides of who she is and what she believes loves is, and to be able to explore that." 

"I am glad that I was able to be able to be a part of that conversation and show my support and love for her, because I am supportive of whatever makes Demi happy," she added. 

During his interview with ET on Monday morning, host Chris Harrison said he and fellow Bachelor producers needed to "rip the Band-Aid off" when it came to diving into same-sex relationships. 

"It's going to be taboo, and I'm not so naive as to think it's going to be all positive, the fact that we're doing this and we're diving into this," he said. "I'm proud of Demi, I'm proud of our producers, I'm proud of the way we handled it. I think it's great and it's time. It's more than time, but I'm glad that we've done it in the right way, very organically, allowing it to happen naturally." 

According to Harrison, everyone on the show was "very celebratory" over Burnett's reveal, but he made sure he was there for her when it came to the eventual backlash. 

"We're going to get backlash and I'm prepared for that. That's just the world we live in, with social media and everything else. 'You didn't handle it right, you didn't do it the right way.' ...Everyone's going to have their spin on it, their perspective and how they want to see it," he shared. "This is how we portrayed it, and I will stand behind it."

"She's the queen of Paradise. She's the queen of any room she walks in," Harrison continued of Burnett. "I love Demi... What you see with Demi is not what you get. She's not bullet proof. She's not a tank... she has that queen mentality, but she's vulnerable and she has feelings too. So, I told her, 'I'm there for you 24/7, if you need anything.'" 

Bachelor in Paradise airs Mondays at 8 p.m. ET/PT on ABC. Join ET's Bachelor Nation Facebook group here


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