LOS ANGELES, Jan. 13 (UPI) -- The Bachelor offered Bachelorette runner up Peter Weber a chance to pick his own suitors. It didn't prepare him for how much more demanding it was to be The Bachelor than it was just being a contestant.
"The schedule is surprising," Weber told reporters of the Television Critics Association. "Being on this side of it, very little sleep, very long nights. Dating that many women, there's only so many hours in a night for a group date, so very, very long nights. I didn't realize it was that long."
Not that Weber is complaining.
"It's totally worth it," Weber said. "Just the travel and then just the experience of having these beautiful, amazing dates that you really won't do in normal life completely surpass all expectations."
The Bachelor comes with an added pressure for Weber, putting him in the position Hannah Brown was in on The Bachelorette. He has to eliminate women to find his potential fiance.
"It's so much harder than I thought it was going to be," Weber said. "One of the hardest things of the entire season was saying bye to relationships because that's why I applied. I didn't want to say bye to them. And I really got attached to a lot of women and it got me in trouble at some points as you guys will see."
Adding to the pressure was Weber's own Bachelorette experience. He knew what it felt like to wonder if Brown would pick him or not.
"You feel a lot more nervous than the other side," Weber said. "I would still say being on this side of it, being the one picking is a lot harder."
The premiere of Weber's Bachelor season brought back Brown who arrived to return the pilot wings Weber gave her and host his first group date. They also hashed out the way their relationship ended on The Bachelorette.
"The Hannah stuff wasn't easy for me to watch," Weber said. "You film and then you go on hiatus like a lull and then you relive it now. That wasn't easy and you guys will see though what that all means."
Weber hinted that Brown could return.
"I think you guys can see that there is true, genuine feelings that are still there in the episode," Weber said. "We'll see what happens."
The Bachelor host Chris Harrison was surprised Brown's return got so emotional.
"It was supposed to be just kind of a sweet, sincere, 'I want to give you your wings back,'" Harrison said, referring to the wing pin Weber had given Brown on Bachelorette. "She knew that meant a lot to him, and that's something he only has one pair of. It was a gamble and he laid it out there."
"She was nice enough to come back and give back the wings," Harrison said. "Then it was supposed to be honestly kind of fun and light for her to come back on the date. As you saw, it all dissolved into what you saw -- this gut wrenching, raw, emotional talk."
Harrison confirmed Monday's episode would either include Brown again, or at least deal with the repercussions of her return.
"The women start to think that's weird," Harrison said. "Where it picks up next Monday with their talk is as gut wrenching, if not more so, than it was last week."
Brown instill one value Weber carried over to his own Bachelor experience.
"I remember the beginning of her season that first night, her first speech, she was all about being vulnerable while open with us," Weber said. "I made that a big theme of mine and wanted to set that theme early on. You're going to see me having a hard time."
Even though Brown chose Jed Wyatt on The Bachelorette, losing the rose did not make Weber jaded going into his Bachelor.
"I'm such an optimistic person that I always went into it thinking the best can happen," Weber said. "I didn't go into it needing to come out with an engagement, but that's just the way I've always thought. I'm very positive in that regard."
Having seen many Bachelors before, Harrison concurred that Weber has the right approach.
"What you see with Peter is what you get," Harrison said. "He's just honest to a fault."
The pressures Weber felt from week one only increased by the end of the season. He called the week encompassing the season's final episode "the hardest week of my life."
"I keep saying I couldn't have predicted what happens," Weber said. "[It] literally doesn't stop until the very last second. Just a lot of unexpected stuff I just couldn't predict, but I took it and I feel like I'm stronger."
Harrison corroborated Weber's assessment of this season's finale.
"This is very dramatic, but in a very different way than, say, Colton's season, whereas there was this crazy feat of athleticism where he jumped the fence," Harrison said. "Hannah's was obviously the twist at the end of hers with Jed and what happened. This is in a more emotional gut-wrenching way."
The Bachelor airs Monday nights at 8 p.m. on ABC.