James is half Black and half white and was raised solely by his white mother for almost his entire life–which immediately had a lot of fans jumping to the conclusion that his wife would end up being white, too. Now, Matt is responding to those claims that he’s going to end up with a white woman, calling it “low-key frustrating.”
In a new interview with the Bachelor Happy Hour podcast, James responds to a question from Rachel Lindsay–the first Black Bachelorette–about the conversation in question, saying he hates that it became such a talking point in the first place.
“First off, people should, regardless of what they look like, want you to be happy with whoever you’re with,” he explained. “And if you knew anything about me, if you were close to me, you would know that the last women that I dated were all Black women.”
Matt goes on to say that his season of the series contains a mix of white, Black, and Asian women, all of whom he has “dated across the board” in the past. He also thinks the show’s host, Chris Harrison, facilitated a respectful conversation prior to the women’s arrival on the first episode.
“When you’re dating somebody, if you’re excluding a race, then I don’t even know where to begin on that. What I’m looking for in a woman isn’t race specific,” James said. “What I’m looking for may upset somebody. What I’m looking for isn’t a race. I don’t only exclusively date Black women. I don’t only exclusively date white women. I’ve dated all across the board, and I’ve found redeeming qualities in everybody, which is a blessing, and that’s why it’s so difficult for me throughout this season.”