The Bachelor vs The Bachelorette

From boy-crazy teenagers to roaring Bridezillas, all women are die-hard romantics, right? Men are all we ever think about! It’s always guys this, men that—tall ones, short ones, big ones, small ones, one man, two men, red man, blue men! And landing a man, boy, that’s not only our biggest goal in life, it’s our MAIN goal. And whether it’s school, health, careers, friends, family, marriage so trumps all others. And how do men show their love? While, I’ll tell you. You know your man is in love when he buys you chocolates, flowers, jewelry, music, shoes, lingerie, tampons, Snuggies, groceries…. Bottom line: if your man ain’t buying you stuff, he don’t love ya no mo’.

What’s that? You don’t believe me? But that’s what all the magazines, TV shows, and romantic comedies are telling me. Aren’t all women either searching for a man, with a man, or getting over one? What’s that? Men don’t consume our every waking thought? And love isn’t about consumerism? Are you sure? I mean, haven’t you even seen the Bachelor?! Like twenty young, beautiful women all competing over one rich, hot guy, with the ultimate goal of him proposing to you at the end? Yeah, sure, women aren’t boy-crazy. Nice try.

Seriously, have you seen that show? Why do people watch that show? (We’ll disregard the fact that I have obviously seen that show. I understand why people watch the show–it’s entertaining. But why do people watch it?) It is the epitome of the assumption that all gals want is a ring. Twenty women all fighting over one man, and only the man does the rejecting. Like, he’s hot and rich and wants to get married, so why wouldn’t all these women be instantly and desperately into him? Nowhere among the nastiness and bitter fighting is a girl thinking: “Hmm, you know, I just don’t think he’s the one for me” or “Geez, I really don’t like his personality” or maybe even “I don’t really like that he’s snogging every girl here”. Is the real message here about love, or that while he wants “true love”, and the girls couldn’t give a shit and just want to be married to someone, anyone, as long as he’s got the chiseled chin of Superman and the deep pockets of Tony Stark.

And sure, they also made the Bachelorette, and it was the exact same thing! The guys were desperate, and always catfighting with each other, going behind each other’s backs, doing anything to get the girl’s attention. I mean, the guys were even making out with the film and camera crew…. Oh Wait. It was the exact opposite. No, it was still just the girl reinforcing the stereotypes about women. (But what do you make about the difference between the Bachelor & the Bachelorette’s socioeconomic status? Dude was rich but babe just gotta be hot? I’m not sure what to make of it, but I do find it interesting.)

But perhaps all this propaganda serves another purpose. If all women are obsessing constantly over boys, and how to attract them, how to keep them, how to please them, how to land one, how to do over one…. these women won’t realize that they’re getting paid less or having their reproductive rights taken away. Because maybe if we spent half that energy on our schooling or career, maybe we could really shake things up.