The former “Bachelorette” and season 28 winner of “Dancing with the Stars” Brown, 26, posted a series of Instagram stories describing her personal experience, admitting she “chickened out” on sharing the video after making it the day before she shared.
“I’m sharing this because yesterday was an off day,” the Alabama native wrote in the text on her story. “I felt overwhelmed and unenthusiastic about work. I had negative thoughts on repeat in my head. I felt just plain exhausted and would have rather sleep all day….”
Then Brown switched to video to broach the subject.
“I’m gonna have a real chat because I feel like this is something that other people can relate to but we don’t talk about it enough,” Brown said. “I struggle with depression.”
“That’s also, first of all, hard to admit, but I have had a depression episode the past several months and, slowly, because I recognize that, I’ve seen that I’m moving and flowing and getting out of this state,” she continued. “But it’s been a slow move. And I’ve just learned to be compassionate with myself. And trying to be better about my self-talk when I do feel not so great, in sitting in the discomfort and knowing that it’s gonna pass and doing the things I need to do…
She wrote that she has worked hard and has received support and love, which she said has helped her “to be loving towards myself as I go on this journey of TRUE healing.”
Brown followed with a post filmed a day later saying she was feeling “good and energized” and advised that if her followers felt “a little off like I did yesterday,” that it’s OK.
“One day later and I’m feeling better,” she said. “And I’m slowly feeling better every day. Some days are easier than others, but that’s life. And I don’t have to beat up on myself. And we are having momentum, and it’s awesome. So don’t give up. You’re amazing.”
In August 2019, following a broken engagement with Jed Wyatt on “The Bachelorette, Brown took to Instagram to update fans on her state of mind in the weeks since her engagement to Jed Wyatt ended.
“Honest policy: I’m struggling,” she wrote. “Life is so different. Since last August, I’ve been a pageant queen, a bachelor contestant, and the Bachelorette. I’ve been in love with multiple people, I got engaged, I broke off an engagement, and I shared it all with millions of people. My faith has been questioned by thousands who don’t know my heart, and my transparency with my decisions has labeled me promiscuous.”
She noted that she’s simultaneously become a role model for young women and started bigger conversations around faith and sex, following her run as “Bachelorette” season involving “fantasy suite” narratives and her own commentary on gender dynamics.
Open about her faith, Hannah debated sex and sin with controversial contestant Luke Parker on the show and then on Twitter as the episode aired, as he (and viewers) called her faith and actions into question during fantasy suite week when she revealed she had sex with another man she was dating on the show.
“I’m living on my own for the first time and shuffling through this life of next steps with press, media, and opportunities galore,” she continued on the Instagram post. “I miss my friends and family who have watched my life explode. I feel guilty because I don’t have the time or emotional capacity to fill each of them in on my life right now. I can’t keep up with the people who matter most, because I can barely keep up with my own life right now.”
She said she wasn’t complaining, rather reinforcing she’d grown as a woman throughout the process and giving thanks for the opportunity.
“However it’s uncharted territory for me, and it’s been hard to really process what the heck is going on…Maybe I needed write this out to remind myself I’m human and it’s okay to be overwhelmed. And maybe, I just needed to remind you guys too.”
Brown this week appeared on the premiere episode of ABC’s “Celebrity Dating Game,” serving as the revival series’ first bachelorette, asking three suitors questions before narrowing down her choice to one guy for a potential date. Brown recently revealed she began dating model Adam Woolard, who makes frequent appearances on the reality star’s Instagram and YouTube feeds.
It marked Brown’s first ABC appearance since a 2020 incident where she used a racial slur in a social media post, causing immediate controversy. The “Bachelorette” star faced an angry backlash on social media when she posted an Instagram Live video of herself on May 16, singing the lyrics to DaBaby’s “Rockstar.”
Brown was absent from social media during the immediate aftermath, but broke her silence with an 18-minute video during which said she spent time educating herself about racial issues — reading books, listening to podcasts, watching videos and studying with help from a tutor.
She also made public comments recently about men from “Bachelor” nation who made some news. Colton Underwood, the former “Bachelor” star who came out as gay in April during an interview on “Good Morning America,” led a memorable season of ABC’s popular reality dating show. expressed her support for Underwood in a text post on her Instagram Stories, saying, “So proud of @coltonunderwood. Sending you support every step of the way as you continue to embark on your self-discovery journey.” She capped the message with a heart emoji.
Brown competed for Underwood’s affections on Season 23 of the ABC reality series, taking seventh place that season and moving on to star in “The Bachelorette.”
She also took to Instagram to address the Chris Harrison controversy in February, after ABC announced he would not host the current season of “The Bachelorette.”
“Lord knows I’ve made mistakes, but I have learned this past year if we want to move forward, we have to confront where we have fallen short,” she said. “It’s so important that we lift up and listen and value and encourage underrepresented voices. We just have to be better.”
Deadline reported in June that Harrison will soon permanently exit “The Bachelor” franchise, after he announced he would step away from “The Bachelor” franchise, which he has hosted since 2002, to focus on a “path to anti-racism” in light of his comments about controversial contestant Rachael Kirkconnell’s past.
Brown also launched a YouTube channel in 2020, creating content about relationship advice, fashion, cooking and mental health.