Bachelor Nation's Kelley Flanagan on Her Lyme Disease Diagnosis: 'It's a Blessing and a Curse'

In an emotional Instagram video, Bachelor Nation‘s Kelley Flanagan revealed she had “not-so-good news” to share with fans. The influencer revealed details about her ongoing battle with Lyme disease.

The 29-year-old lawyer explained how the illness is affecting her overall health. Saying the diagnosis is “a blessing and a curse,” Flanagan discussed significant lifestyle changes she plans to utilize to combat the debilitating disease.

‘The Bachelor’ alum went through a painful breakup with Peter Weber

In 2020, Flanagan competed on Season 24 of ABC’s reality TV series The Bachelor. Although she was sent home in week seven, the Chicago native rekindled a relationship with bachelor Peter Weber. They dated on and off again for about 10 months after the show wrapped.

According to E! Online, the tax attorney shared details about her messy breakup with Weber. Flanagan told him to “get the hell out of my life” after several attempts to salvage their broken relationship.

Weber responded, saying that despite it being “the best relationship that I have ever had in my life,” he has “more than 100% moved on.” The airline pilot revealed that his former girlfriend was “wanting to ride it as long as she possibly can and make headlines and get people talking.”

Us Weekly reported that Flanagan recently responded to Weber’s allegations via YouTube. The University of Alabama alum said she was “never going to let anyone speak a narrative” for her. Flanagan explained, “I just think I would have respected him more if he didn’t accuse me of trying to hit the headlines.” She continued, “That’s just his opinion, I guess, which is very sad.” 

Kelley Flanagan reveals she has Lyme disease

Flanagan is back in the headlines. In an Instagram video, The Bachelor contestant tearfully revealed she tested positive for Lyme disease. 

The bite of an infected deer tick can transmit Lyme disease. The Mayo Clinic reports that ticks carrying Lyme disease thrive in heavily wooded or grassy areas. Spending time in these environments increases your chances of contracting the disease.

While difficult to diagnose, the common symptoms of Lyme disease include a red rash near the bite that forms a bulls-eye pattern. Early signs of fever, chills, body aches, swollen lymph nodes, and neck stiffness are not uncommon. Long-lasting effects include joint pain and neurological issues.

Flanagan revealed that two of her brothers also have the disease. She explained, “A lot of their symptoms sounded like really similar to me, ’cause I’ve always had something off since I’ve been young and really, really had to take care of myself.”

E Online reported that Flanagan told her fans, “It’s not the end of the world, but it’s definitely gonna be a lot of changes.” She went on to say she can now target why she feels “off” so often.

Flanagan plans to adopt “several different lifestyle changes” and will do “extensive research on how to help/hopefully cure this.” She admitted, “I know this is going to be tough … I’m going to put so much of my time and energy into figuring this out and combating this.”

Members of Bachelor Nation were quick to respond. Raven Gates, Kendall Long, Ashley Iaconetti, Victoria Fuller, and Kaitlyn Bristowe all offered kind words of support.

Fellow Season 24 contestant Mykenna Dorn said, “Love you Kell [heart emoji] always here. Thinking of you.” Kristian Haggerty from Bachelor in Paradise said, “Love you so much Kelley. Praying for you always.”

Flanagan is not alone in her diagnosis

Ryan and Trista Sutter of The Bachelorette also received Lyme disease diagnoses. Other celebrities who experienced the disease include Justin Bieber, Avril Lavigne, Alec Baldwin, Shania Twain, and Amy Schumer.

According to US Weekly, in 2020, Hailey Bieber defended her husband’s diagnosis. She told fans, “For those who are trying to downplay the severity of Lyme disease, please do your research and listen to the stories of people who have suffered with it for years.” 

Kelly Osbourne, diagnosed with stage III neurological Lyme disease, offered her advice, saying, “Stay the f— away from reindeer.”

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