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Does the Bachelor Support Healthy Relationships?


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Jun 12, 2018

Does the Bachelor Support Healthy Relationships?

As the new season of the Bachelorette began two weeks ago, tabloids and media outlets are buzzing with who Becca Kufrin is falling for and all of the drama that accompanies her public dating life. After Arie Luyendyk Jr. dumped Becca after their engagement, previous accusations against the legitimacy of the Bachelor/Bachelorette series and its subsequent relationships resurfaced. With that being said, there are couples who met on the bachelor (such as Season 13's Jason and Molly and Ashley and J.P. from Season 15) that are still together - many happily married with children.

However, the publicity and "game-show" style of the Bachelor/Bachelorette relationships call into question not only its legitimacy but also its influence. These shows have skyrocketing ratings; many individuals from all over the country tune in on Monday nights to see who will and will not receive the ever-coveted rose. Children, teenagers, and young adults watch attentively to the Bachelor or Bachelorette's every move. From how they date to the qualities they look for and how the winner (aka the newly engaged fiancé) is picked, a captive audience is drawn in.

As a fan, I enjoy the show, but it is worth noting its potential influence on modern-day relationships and expectations. With the influence of social media on the rise, having a "perfect" relationship or being "couple goals" seems to be prioritized, often to the same level or above the actual quality of the relationship. 

Moreover, TV shows like this can set unrealistic expectations of what a real relationship is like. As contestants on this show go on lavish dates and have picture-perfect moments for the first (and last) months of their dating relationships, it could influence some of its younger viewers into believing that real relationships reflect this notion as well. Obviously, not everyone will believe it, but it is worth noting for younger and more immature viewers. Therefore, although the show cannot be held responsible for resulting in this type of effect, the public perception of the relationship and exceedingly high expectations for relationships can be argued to be damaging to its audience.

Do televised dating shows, such as the Bachelor and Bachelorette, promote healthy relationships? Or, would you say they lead to unrealistic expectations and a lower quality of relationships? 


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