Josh Seiter Says He Was Victim of 'Cruel Prank'

Former 'Bachelorette' contestant assures Instagram followers that he's not dead
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 29, 2023 1:16 AM CDT
Updated Aug 29, 2023 3:56 PM CDT
UPDATE Aug 29, 2023 3:56 PM CDT

Former Bachelorette contestant Josh Seiter says he's alive and well—and the victim of a cruel hacker. In a video posted on Instagram Tuesday, the 36-year-old said a death notice on the platform, purportedly posted by family members Monday, had been put up by somebody who had gained access to his account, TMZ reports. He said he had been trying "desperately" to regain access to the account. "Somebody was playing a cruel joke and mocking my mental illness and the struggles I've gone through with depression and suicide attempts," Seiter said, per NBC News. "And I'm sorry for all the pain they caused when they made that post. I just got back into my account." He said he is working with his team to determine the hacker's identity.

Aug 29, 2023 1:16 AM CDT

A Bachelorette contestant who had been open about his mental health struggles over the years has died at age 36. Josh Seiter, who appeared on season 11 of the reality dating series in 2015 but was eliminated by Kaitlyn Bristowe in the first week, had gone on to be romantically linked to women from other reality shows, including 90 Day Fiance and Love After Lockup, reports. He had also posted openly on social media about being a survivor of depression, anxiety, and OCD, and said he had attempted suicide in the past. A statement released on his Instagram account doesn't give any details about his death, but does remind people that anyone experiencing a "mental health crisis" and needing help can call or text the 988 Lifeline, ETOnline reports.

On Thursday, Seiter himself had posted on Instagram for what would turn out to be the final time, captioning a smiling photo of himself, "Surviving depression and anxiety one day at a time with a smile." Seiter, who had previously identified as pansexual, recently came out as bisexual, and had also been linked to Monica Beverly Hillz, a contestant on RuPaul's Drag Race who was the first contestant from the show to come out as trans. "As all who knew him can attest, Joshua was an incredibly bright light in an increasingly dim world," reads the statement announcing his death. "His fearless voice and indomitable spirit helped thousands of people in their darkest moments feel just a little less alone." (More celebrity death stories.)

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