Mike Bruno
April 16, 2010 AT 05:07 PM EDT

American Idol favorite Crystal Bowersox was contemplating leaving the competition a few weeks ago, Ryan Seacrest tells E! Online, because she was emotionally drained and missed her family (as first reported by TMZ). Seacrest says he talked her into staying during a confrontation in the parking lot following one of the shows. “The greatest thing I ever did was make enough money so I could buy my mom a house,” he says told her. “You can buy your mom a house.”

Fox is not commenting on the story.

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