Michelle Young opened up about a traumatic moment in her life in a recent episode of The Bachelorette. Young, who is just the series’ third Black lead, grew up with interracial parents. She spoke on the downside of being mixed race in a town where it wasn’t necessarily accepted while on a date with one of her suitors.

Michelle Young on being called the N-Word

While at dinner with Rodney Matthew, Young spoke of their admiration for her mother, specifically in terms of how her parents handled prejudices associated with being in an interracial marriage. She also opened up about being called the N-word while shopping at a grocery store.

At the time, Young was in a relationship, but says that after sharing what happened with her partner, he was less than supportive. He told her that she was giving the racist too much “power” and that she “chose to be upset.” Looking back, Young says it marked a turning point in the way she views relationships and says she desires a partner who is empathetic. 

Michelle Young talks being the token Black girl

While on another date in the episode at a spoken word event,  each man was tasked with writing a poem. They all had to share the poem with the group. Young took the moment to speak about her experiences of being the “token Black girl.” 

“I was able to make friends; I got invited to all the big parties, as long as I followed the basic white trends,” she shared. “I was the girl picked last for prom, but the first for basketball.”

The Bachelorette airs weekly on ABC.