Trying to draw similarities between the reality show The Bachelor and matchmaking is like trying to connect "ham" and "hamsters" -- they may sound somewhat similar, but that is where the parallels end. The most recent season of
The Bachelor just wrapped up, and the early predictions are that their success rate is going to drop from 7% to 6%. Nothing could fly more squarely in the face of how couples are brought together, but as a Matchmaker, someone asks me about the show five times a week. Also, this season's bachelor, Ben Flajnik, lives about 20 minutes from our global headquarters.
That doesn't mean I don't watch the show.
The first lesson you can draw from the show is the same lesson from every season: You can't put love on a timeline. To "win" on this show, the rate at which two people "fall in love" has to line up perfectly, and it just never happens. If the main driver of saying "I love you" is that you know four other women have said it and you want to "get that rose", then the phrase cheapens your feelings.
And while Courtney Robertson, or at least the way she was edited to make the show exciting, seems like a manipulative, mean-spirited woman, she brings a great second lesson from Season 16: Action speaks louder than words, and she was "in it to win it". While the other women retreated back to the house to gossip and find safety in their shared insecurity, Courtney took the risks to stand out from the crowd and eventually ended up creating a great memory in Costa Rica. In the final episodes when most women were reading from the same boring script of "I really want to be vulnerable with you", Courtney stepped it up with a memory scrapbook she made of their time together. I am sure that Ben flipped through that book many more times than he reminisced over any of his other conversations.
I'm not recommending you watch Season 17 of the Bachelor (every season I swear is my last), but whether you love Courtney or love to hate her, she was a great model for working hard to make a relationship happen.
Now, just four more weeks until The Bachelorette!