The odds of finding your soulmate on The Bachelor are slim. Which makes one wonder, “How does a show, where the sole purpose is to unite two people in matrimony, not work?" Our San Diego bachelawyers have a few ideas.
What is The Bachelor
The Bachelor is a reality TV show that debuted in 2002 with the intention of matching an eligible bachelor with one of the 25 female contestants vying for his heart and his hand in marriage.
The entire purpose of the show is to find love. To technically win the show, the couple must get engaged. In the show’s last 23 seasons, only 14 resulted in a proposal. Of those couples, only one has gotten married.
Granted, there are a few exceptions. Two of the bachelors ended up going back and preposing to the runner-up of their season. Those proposals did last, and the couples did get married. As of 2020, they are still happily married with children. Still, that only makes three couples out of 23 to have gotten married from finding their spouse on the show.
Why the Show Fails at Finding Love
Several factors contribute to the show’s lack of success. Our San Diego divorce lawyers explain some of the main problems that keep people from finding love on the show.
It’s Not Real
The problem with The Bachelor, and shows like it, is that all of these women are after the same thing — getting the final rose. However, unlike other methods of dating, there is only one option.
Throughout the show, each contestant gets to know the bachelor and is eliminated when he decides whether he can truly see a future with them. The concept is similar to dating, except for one major factor — it’s all for show.
When cameras are on, everyone tries to put their best foot forward. They won’t necessarily show their true personality. They could be a horrible person, but they are not going to show that side of them to A: The bachelor and B: the world. (Unless they want to be the villain and start drama for the sake of the show.)
It’s very unlikely that each girl on the show will even like the bachelor, let alone want to marry him. Realistically, there is no way the producers of the show can predict that every single girl will have chemistry with the show’s love interest. Yet, magically they all do because, at the end of the day, this is a television show.
Time is Essential
When someone has to compete with over 20 other people for one person’s affection, it can be difficult to build a meaningful connection. And relationships require time and effort on both ends. With so many people, there just isn’t enough time for a genuine connection and understanding of one another to form between the bachelor and his contestants.
Although there is no exact answer for how much time a couple should date before getting married, spending more time getting to know someone does help strengthen a relationship, especially a marriage. One study found that couples who were together for at least three years before getting engaged were 39 percent less likely to divorce when compared to couples who got engaged in their first year of dating.
The show is filmed over the course of approximately two months. For some people, when they meet their soulmate, they know, and maybe two months would be enough for them. But, on a television show with 20-something other contestants? The chances of getting enough one-on-one time to build a foundation for a solid relationship is not the easiest.
Not All Contestants are Looking for Love
While some contestants truly are trying to find their soulmate, others are not there for the right reasons. Sure the idea is to find love, but contestants also have much more to gain than love just by appearing on the show. The latter seems more likely, especially in recent years, as social media has become and more popular.
Joining a reality show like The Bachelor is guaranteed to build a substantial following online. Rejected contestants on the show usually go on to pursue careers as influencers, leveraging the massive followings they gain throughout their tenure on The Bachelor.
This provides them with a unique ability to make hundreds of thousands, and sometimes millions of dollars a year just from being featured on the show, which can lead to skewed priorities and objectives for contestants. Many former contestants, even the ones who don’t make it to the end of the show, are launched into being an influencer.
At the end of the day, it’s best to view The Bachelor for what it really is — entertainment. There is a reason the show is such a pop-culture phenomenon, but it’s not because it portrays a healthy relationship. The drama, the fantasy of “love,” and the humor are what keeps the fans coming back year after year.