“The Bachelor” mirrors real life

Before you say, “DG, are you crazy? The Bachelor is totally contrived,” hear me out. I’m not saying it’s not artificial, nor that much of it parallels real life. In fact, I admit to only watching 2 episodes this season, and none of any previous season.

I mean having 25 women live in a mansion while competing for a man’s affection is strange, don’t you think? And I find it far fetched to believe some of these women developed such deep feelings for a man with whom they barely spent any one-on-one time. But I do believe some feelings could develop on both sides. However, I’ve always thought it ludicrous that the producers expect a couple to become engaged at the end of such a manufactured love test.

Brad WomackSo when Brad Womack, the bachelor of this season, chose neither of the final two women last night, I wanted to cheer. Finally, someone who understands that it is folly to ask someone to marry you after knowing her so little time.

However, I was as confused as the two women, because he repeatedly expressed how deep his feelings were for both women, and how he could see himself married to either. The episode contributed to our bafflement since it didn’t allow us to hear Brad’s justification — especially when we saw him buy an engagement ring and tell the audience he was sure of his decision.

But it reminded me of the wail I hear from many women: “He said he really cared for me, he’d never met anyone like me, I made him very happy. He did all the right things to sweep me off my feet. I told him how much I cared for him and he never said he didn’t feel the same way. How could he lead me on like that, then go poof? I believed him, then he just disappeared. He played me!”

In The Bachelor’s case, the producers want to entice us to tune in tonight to hear Brad’s side of the story. In real life, we rarely get that chance. Brad seems like the real deal — sensitive, vulnerable, respectful to these women. Was he lying when he told each one he felt deeply for her? I don’t think so. I think people can have deep feelings, but not yet feel in love.

So was Brad right to not propose when he knew he wasn’t completely in love? Absolutely. My guess is he understood the seriousness of marriage and wanted to be absolutely clear he was making the right decision when he asked the woman he chose.

Now might he be a perfectionist or commitment averse? Perhaps, but I didn’t hear anything that would make me believe that. Might some of the men who have left you in the dust have other issues? Of course.

So we can’t say Brad is a clone of some of your past loves. But I think he is representative of guys who are genuine, honest and straightforward, yet they don’t behave as we want them to. We can call them names and say how much they’ve hurt us. And after we grieve and obsess over trying to figure out what happened, we can be grateful because we wouldn’t want to be with a man who wasn’t absolutely, positively sure he wanted to be with us. Otherwise, we’re just a place holder.

Yes, I will be tuning in to hear Brad’s side so I can understand why he made the decision he did. And then we can see if his logic applies to other relationships, past and future.

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2 responses to ““The Bachelor” mirrors real life”

  1. nysharon Avatar

    I cheered too DG. I just don’t get it, (maybe its the youth of the woman) how they can really know someone enough after 6 weeks and a couple dates. I think it goes to show a man can have 25 of the most beautiful woman and still not find love. I think it is more realistic to say that he or she chooses the one he would like to date exclusively and give her the last rose. All in all, its just plain studpid and I can’t beleive I occationally get pulled into watching those woman scratch for his attention (sad but true). Its like a train wreck you can’t turn away from.

  2. Bobbie Avatar

    I agree that the situation is contrived, but having watched some of the previous seasons, there was another solution that would have made more sense. Brad appeared sincere in his search for a woman to marry. He also seemed to have feelings for at least one of the women, if not both. A previous Bachelor gave the ring with the understanding that it was not an engagement, but only a promise to explore a further relationship, and that they should get to know each other under less artificial circumstances, and see if the attraction was still there…more sensible and less painful than “goodbye forever.”