Single father Doug Clerget received the “first impression rose” on the opening night of The Bachelorette, but as has happened so many seasons before, it was all downhill from there. He was sent home in the midst of a group date this week, one week short of the final four and hometown visits, after Emily Maynard grew impatient with his go-slow approach.
Clerget appeared on this week’s Bachelorette conference call, and sounded relaxed and at peace with the humorous impression he made on Monday, the highlight of which was an awkward kiss on the lips at the very moment Emily was beginning her “this isn’t going to work out” speech. He laughed recalling how badly he misread her signals. “I thought the conversation was heading towards ‘come on, give me a kiss,’ and I really was not expecting to get sent home,” he said.
He believes that his status as the father of a 12-year-old boy helps explain why he often came across as overly conservative on TV – a mirror image of Emily’s concern about setting a good example for her daughter. Clerget also admitted that the filming itself turned out to be an issue: “I’m pretty shy in front of the cameras; I did not know that about myself going into this.”
It was pointed out that Doug and Jef shared a similar approach, in that both seemed to withhold obvious interest in Emily for several weeks, but that the strategy has worked better for Jef. Doug did point out that he had held back on his one solo date with Emily, while Jef’s solo date was where he began to open up. But Doug also suggested he may have been too introverted. “I definitely tried to be respectful. I felt like Emily and I had a good connection from both being single parents, so that was an immediate bond that we had,’’ he said.
“Watching [the episodes], and watching the dates she had with the other guys, I guess I did not understand how much physical chemistry was going on,” he admitted. “I knew a lot of the guys were trying to be as physical as they could, kissing her every chance they got … I didn’t know how much Emily wanted that to happen, being a single mom.” Hey, single moms need love too.