Before Colton Underwood, there was Sean Lowe as the original ~virgin~ Bachelor. Although the Dallas native was technically a born-again virgin, he still abstained from sex during his run as the Bachelor on season 17.
To recap, the author made his debut on Emily Maynard’s season of The Bachelorette in 2012, but unfortunately was sent home before the finale in lieu of Arie Luyendyk Jr. and Jef Holm. The West Virginia native chose to get engaged to Jef, but they split shortly after.
Sean was then cast as The Bachelor in 2013 and met his now-wife, Catherine Giudici. The pair wed in 2014 and share three children — Samuel, Isaiah and Mia. Throughout his stint on The Bachelorette, he kept quiet about remaining celibate. It wasn’t until he told reporters that he and Catherine were waiting to have sex on their wedding night that it made headlines.
“From that moment forward, it was just a firestorm…I mean, every tabloid had me on the cover and labeled me as the ‘Virgin Bachelor,’” he recalled in a 2014 interview with I Am Second.
The blond hunk revealed that he was abstaining from sex because of his religion. “I didn’t have sex in college,” he said. “And honestly, I don’t even know if I knew at that time why I took that stance. After graduating college, I moved back to Dallas. I was dating other girls and I started having sex, and I would feel extremely guilty afterward. But after that guilt faded, then I’d start talking to some other girl and go down that same path of destruction. At the age of 24, I finally became a man. I said, ‘OK Jesus, let’s do it again.’”
Colton was compared to the Dancing With the Stars alum at the beginning of season 23 and it became a big part of his storyline. However, Sean noted he made headlines after his season aired, not beforehand. “See, I didn’t get it during the show. That all came after. So, it was press everywhere we went — press wanted to talk about it,” he exclusively told Life & Style at the time. “But this is different because now it’s like, [the] show really wants to talk about it. I think it’s a bit overkill because that’s all anyone’s talking about, and I’m sure Colton has a lot more qualities.”
Sean went on to find his happily ever after with Catherine, and they have a beautiful family. Although Colton and season 23 winner, Cassie Randolph, broke up in May, we hope he finds the same happiness someday.