Jason Mesnick became the most famous Bachelor ever when he broke up with his final pick during the After the Final Rose special, and got back together with his second choice, Molly, right there on the couch in front of God, Chris Harrison, and America. Well, joke's on America because Jason and Molly Mesnick are still together ten years later and raising their daughter Riley together. But while many former Bachelors fade into obscurity eventually, the Mesnicks have stuck around. Molly Mesnick tells Romper they're just regular people, but that hasn't stopped the world from caring deeply about their lives and parenting choices.
In partnership with Wet Ones, Molly wants everybody to know that life is messy. And that mom-shamers on the internet should maybe back off just a smidge.
If you're any kind of Bachelor fan you know that having second thoughts on your final pick on the show is now known as "pulling a Mesnick." But, to be honest, to see the Mesnick family now it's hard to stay bitter about it. Clearly, they're still happy. And they're evidently still happy to swing by for further Bachelor related events, like when ABC brought Jason back on stage to weigh in on the whole Arie Luyendyk Jr. situation. That means the family has stayed in the public eye all this time, which comes with its own unique set of obstacles.
For one thing, having famous parents is the only life the couple's daughter Riley has ever known. "It happens every day," Molly tells me about being recognized out in the world with her daughter. "Whether I’m at the gym or the grocery store or even at Riley’s tee-ball game, parents from the other team are like, ‘Oh my gosh, you’re Molly and Jason from the Bachelor!'" But not all interactions with other people are this low-key.
Anyone famous on the internet is familiar with that weird world's pesky villains — the trolls. Molly says, "It doesn’t happen so much now, but when I was younger and we posted a photo of her in her carseat, they always commented on where the seatbelt was sitting. Like ‘It’s not high enough! It’s not tight enough!’" She adds with a sigh, "I just could never imagine commenting something negative on someone’s social media." Molly theorizes that trolls only say nasty things for the attention so she tries not to respond. "I'll just delete it," she tells me.
The thing is, like most influencers on Instagram, Molly's life is never as picture perfect as it appears. And like most mothers in general, things get hectic. So as much as Molly's life is not relatable to us mere mortals (when was the last time someone snapped a picture of you at the grocery store?), a lot of it is. "We’re just people and we all make mistakes and we all have messes," she says, continuing, "My house isn’t always clean, I don’t always have the perfect photo, and in a lot of the Instagram stories we do, I’m unshowered, fresh from the gym, you know. Like, that’s life."
Now, a new set of highly public and highly vilified Bachelor alums have welcomed their own little one into the world. Arie famously dumped Becca after proposing to her, and on camera no less, in favor of his second choice, Lauren. Now, Arie and Lauren are married with a new daughter, Alessi Ren (who has her own Instagram page). To say they're not the most popular figures from the show would be an understatement.
So what advice does a woman who's been there have for the new couple? She keeps it simple. "They’re the parents of that sweet baby, they know what’s best for their baby, social media trolls do not," she says. "They’re going to be phenomenal parents and just ignore the noise and do you."
Frankly, that sounds like some advice we could all use.