One of the infamous moments in the history of The Challenge occurred on the Rivals III season as Johnny Bananas and his partner Sarah Rice had won the season.
Bananas, who had the better overall score of the two competitors, was given the option to split the prize money with his partner or keep it all for himself.
He nefariously decided to leave his partner penniless for her efforts in them winning the season, shocking Sarah, the other competitors, and viewers everywhere.
Since that moment, Sarah hasn’t appeared on a season of The Challenge. She recently explained why to fans as she said she’d been asked about it a lot.
Sarah Rice shares with fans why she’s not on The Challenge
The Rivals III season aired back in 2016 on MTV, so it’s been five years since Sarah, 35, has been on a season of The Challenge.
Apparently, the question comes up a lot on her social media from fans wondering why she doesn’t return for another shot at winning.
She posted a video on her TikTok explaining why “it’s become much easier to say ‘No’ to The Challenge these days.”
Since Rivals III, Sarah said she got her master’s degree in marriage and family therapy. She said she’s now a therapist, works at a private practice, and has a full client load.
“It’s not really the kind of job where you can say, ‘Peace, I’m leaving. I’m gonna go climb mountains and do fun stuff for two months,'” Sarah shared, adding she’s dedicated to the work she does.
“It’s always been my goal to be a therapist. It’s my dream job, and I’m so, so happy that I get to do it,” Sarah said.
Sarah said she saw ‘darker sides’ of reality television
In her TikTok video, Sarah also explained she isn’t someone who wanted to be on reality TV forever, indicating she saw it as a “really, really fun thing to do” in her 20s.
“I got to explore the world, and I got to do so many fun things. I met so many great people. I’m so grateful for that,” Sarah said, adding, “but in that whole experience, I also saw some of the darker sides to reality television.”
The former Real World Brooklyn star said she especially saw what reality TV could do to people’s mental health.
“It took a little while to just kind of like transition back into being a normal person,” she said with regards to herself after being on The Challenge.
The former Challenge winner said these days, with how social media gives fans so much more access to reality TV stars, it’s “really hard to maintain personal boundaries and just kind of have your own life.”
“I really wanted to be a regular person. I really wanted to have a life outside of The Challenge,” she shared.
As a therapist, Sarah said she’s now dedicated to helping people who’ve been on reality television to transition back into their regular life and cope with their feelings involving identity issues or social anxiety disorder.
“I wanted to provide this opportunity to people who have been on reality shows and be the therapist that many of them really didn’t get, and I certainly tried to find and did not get,” she said.
Sarah’s last appearance was that Rivals III season, where she is credited as a winner, despite getting no prize money. She also won on the Battle of the Exes II season alongside ex-boyfriend Jordan Wiseley, giving her two wins out of five finals appearances in her nine seasons. She banked over $173,000 in prize money during her time on the show.
Now it appears she’s more than happy doing the job she loves and enjoying a more normal life. It’s something other Challenge stars may seek to do, and they may even look to Sarah for help in doing so in the future.
The Challenge: Spies, Lies & Allies premieres on Wednesday, August 11 at 8/7c on MTV.