Tom Bergeron is standing by Hannah Brown! The former Bachelorette, 25, became emotional during the Monday, October 28, episode of Dancing With the Stars after Carrie Ann Inaba said that something was “lacking” in her jazz performance. “You’re disconnected in the movements,” the judge told the former beauty queen, who teared up at the end of the episode.
While Brown’s partner Alan Bersten admitted that he thought the comment was “so accurate,” the competition series’ host did not agree.
“I’m not seeing the disconnect the judges addressed, to be honest,” Bergeron, 64, told Us Weekly exclusively on Wednesday, October 30. “I think Hannah is among several contestants who deserve to have an eye (or two) on the Mirrorball.”
Following the episode, Bersten, 25, explained his comment in a lengthy Instagram post, calling Brown a “dream partner” to work with.
“You work hard, you care more than any other person I have met, and you put up with me. No you don’t have experience performing, singing, or acting. I know this doesn’t come easy to you, but you impress me every single day, when you go out there and you give it 100% I am so proud of you,” the choreographer wrote on Tuesday, October 29. “I just wanted to say thank you, thank you for being an incredible teammate. Thank you for always leaving your heart on the floor, and thank you for trusting me on this journey. You not only inspire me, but you inspire everyone that comes across your infectious attitude!”
Shortly after, the Alabama native shared a long post on Instagram, explaining that she went on the show hoping to show off her confidence after a tough journey on The Bachelorette, but is struggling to do so.
“I came into this experience a little broken and confused — more than I’ve shared. Every day has brought its challenges with my past, my fears, and the uncomfortableness of opening myself up again to be judged on something VERY scary like learning a new skill to perform each week,” she wrote, calling Monday night’s show “defeating” for her. “A lot of suppressed emotions started to surface from this amazing, but grueling experience. I want to be me. I want to be real. I feel my best when I feel like I have the opportunity to share my heart with others. But I know that’s been lacking in what has been seen on DWTS. It’s true there is a disconnect. I am busting my ass. I am giving this my all. It’s my focus and passion right now. But each week I fall flat. I’ve gotten to the point of being so anxious before I perform that I can’t completely enjoy it like I wish and know I could.”
That said, Brown reiterated that she is ready to keep working through it — and knows it’s going to be tough.
“I KNOW I have a lot more I can give. I want to be able to feel free and confident to dance with my whole heart. I’m working on getting there. I’m not throwing a pity party. I can take criticism and understand hard work…and I also know that my attitude has to change to rise above this slump I’m in. But this is real life. These are real emotions. It’s okay to be grateful and positive, while also acknowledging the hard days we all have,” the Bachelor alum wrote. “It’s so important to think positively, but it’s also important to acknowledge and feel all the feels. This pressure to pretend is not good for anyone. That’s how this crazy cycle of perfectionism continues to exist in a lot of us.”
Dancing With the Stars airs on ABC Mondays at 8 p.m. ET.