Monte Durham is a successful fashion expert and one the stars of TLC’s “Say Yes to the Dress: Atlanta,” but before he worked his way up, Durham had humble beginnings.

“I grew up poor in West Virginia,” he told Fox News. “I went to school in a three-room schoolhouse that my great-grandfather built so that we wouldn’t have to walk five miles as my mother did.”

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Durham revealed he grew up with no running water or a toilet in his home. “There were a lot of challenges,” he said. “Bullying. I think those were some of the hardest challenges for me to get up and go to school every day knowing that I’m gonna get picked on.”

Lela Myrick standing on the bridal floor runway in a mermaid gown, with consultant Flo, Lori, and Monte standing beside her.

Lela Myrick standing on the bridal floor runway in a mermaid gown, with consultant Flo, Lori, and Monte standing beside her. (TLC)

“Once I conquered that, I joined [the] choir because guess what? You get a robe, you can’t see your clothes under. And whether you like me or not, you’ve got to sing beside me because we’re a team. We’ve got to have one voice here. So I figured out how to make it work for me,” Durham recalled.

His ability to overcome such obstacles makes dealing with brides shopping for their wedding dresses and now bridesmaids, much more manageable.

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He teased there’s “always going to be drama” between a bride and her bridesmaids mostly because the two parties can’t agree. Fans will get a front-row seat to that this season.

Monte (C) and Lori (R) helping bridesmaids on 'Say Yes to the Dress.' 

Monte (C) and Lori (R) helping bridesmaids on ‘Say Yes to the Dress.’  (TLC)

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“We’re Southern — we don’t hide our crazy! We just put out on the front porch and serve you a glass at tea,” he joked. “So the weddings that you see, are actually what’s happening. We are not scripted.”

“Say Yes to the Dress: Atlanta” premieres March 21 at 8/7c on TLC.

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