Why I Watch “The Bachelor” … and It’s Not What you May Think

I’ll admit, I have watched “The Bachelor” and “The Bachelorette” since the very first season. It’s a little bit of a guilty pleasure because who doesn’t love a good love story, right?  I also like seeing all the places they travel to that I will never see otherwise. But I mostly watch because I think it is a fascinating study in human behavior.  It is definitely not a normal circumstance to have 25 people all trying to date one man or woman in a competitive environment while living under the same roof.  The situation presents an opportunity to see how people react in that environment, but there is always a good mix of personality types as well, which are interesting to watch.  Here are some of my observations:

  • Very often, the final two women are completely opposite in personality, and the bachelor seems to be torn as to which one he should choose. I find that fascinating, especially when the two women can’t stand each other from the beginning.
  • Sometimes the person who gets the “first impression rose” is not at all who the bachelor things she is, and sometimes it takes him a while to figure this out.
  • There is usually at least one person who behaves differently in front of the bachelor than they do around the other women, and that always causes drama amongst the women. Or there might be one person who behaves rather differently when the cameras are not rolling. Then there’s the dilemma of whether to tell the bachelor about these things that some of the women debate. The wise bachelors heed these warnings, while the ones who don’t get burned in the end.
  • Sometimes people will do things when they are in a group setting or in an unusual setting (in this case, both) that they wouldn’t do otherwise, like everyone remaining in the house having a dance party while dressed in an outfit of the girl who is on a date because no one likes her.
  • There is usually someone who is very needy, and usually someone who is very emotional. Sometimes they are one in the same.
  • There is usually one person who is not there to make friends but is there just for the bachelor. That person is usually very manipulative and competitive, likes to cause drama or be the center of attention, and will do anything to win because it’s really more about winning. The rest of the women can’t wait for her to leave the show.
  • There are usually women who become either more or less competitive, emotional, aggressive, or bashful under the circumstances than they would normally be.
  • Many women learn to “take their walls down” because they have to, due to the pace of the show, while others have their guard up more than they normally would.
  • Usually at least one person learns something about how they need to treat people more appropriately, or at least they model to viewers how not to treat people.

Most of these could be stated the other way around with the men pursuing the Bachelorette.  Having male contestants vying for the attention of one woman is always interesting.  Men are not usually as caddy as women, but the competitive factor is always present, and they still find ways to cause drama.

I think we would all learn a lot about ourselves if we could have a bunch of cameras follow us around for several weeks and then get to watch it back on TV, regardless of the circumstances.  This particular situation just amplifies people’s personality traits and behaviors because love or the possibility of finding love can make you do crazy things.  I just find it fascinating.

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