That Time I Was a Contestant on The Bachelor

So after a number of unsuccessful dates that came to be because of Tinder and Coffee Meets Bagel, I tried out a new dating app…Hinge.  Think: Tinder but not solely based off of location and the people seem to be a tiny bit more serious about wanting to find a relationship versus just a hookup.

With Hinge, right off the bat, I was pleasantly surprised by how many quality (read: attractive/my type) guys there were on this app.  Even better, the first guy I connected with (October 2013) actually somehow managed to extract real feelings from me, which is the first time I had felt those kinds of emotions and butterflies in over two years.  We ended up seeing each other for about two months, and so rather than breaking it down date-by-date, I’m just going to sum up the whole thing in one post.  It’s a bit lengthy, but enjoy.

In hindsight, our “relationship” was very similar to the kinds of relationships that the contestants on The Bachelor have with the bachelor.

Pre-Meeting Exitement

Because many bachelors are chosen because of how much the viewers felt bad for liked the guy during his experiences on the previous Bachelorette season, the contestants on The Bachelor typically already know enough about the guy before they even step out of the limo and meet him.  Of course, they are all super excited because the way he was portrayed on TV made him seem oh so worthy of becoming their dream husband.

bachelor omg

Similarly, this guy had a great profile. Pictures? Perfection.  Interests? So manly.  Job? Better than most.  I was SUPER excited to be going out with him.  Also, I am (unfortunately) being 100% serious when I say that I told a friend that I found my future husband.

The First Meeting

On the show, the contestants first meet the bachelor after they step out of the limo.  Some people do ridiculous things, which makes me question whether or not they have friends back home because nobody in their right mind would ever tell a friend it is okay to try to do back bends in a formal dress as a first impression.  Others are more normal.  Sometimes there are sparks, and many times there is not.  I’m sure a majority of the girls would probably cringe at something they said, did, or wore upon that first meeting.

limo backbends

My first meeting was kind of similar.  Before I rounded the corner that led to the bar where he was waiting for me, I whipped out my black heels and prepared for my catwalk.  I could see him standing near the door, and I confidently walked towards him.  But as I approached, I felt as though I was walking down Willy Wonka’s shrinking hallway that leads to the long anticipated land of candy.  Although his pictures accurately depicted how good looking he was, it turns out his height was not as well represented through his profile. He was only an inch or two taller than me, which in flats would not have bothered me; however, in heels, I was awkwardly towering over him.  So I may not have shown up in a wedding dress, but it definitely made our first meeting a bit awkward.  Fortunately, I was able to slip my flats back on once we were sitting down.

The One-on-One Date

Anytime a contestant is lucky enough to have her name written on the coveted 1:1 date card, she ends up having a magical experience with the bachelor.  There is usually some sort of activity involved, whether that be walking around the exotic location they are in and experiencing the new food and culture, or they might be bungee jumping or traversing a cave.  At some point, they eventually have a romantic dinner together in a setting that is unrealistic except in ABC’s world of The Bachelor.  Oh, and of course, they are guzzling wine the entire time.  When the girl returns, she is head over heels and believes that she is the frontrunner.

best date ever

The first two dates that we had obviously involved wine and other forms of alcohol, but he also actually ordered food for us – which is by far the easiest way to my heart.  We never stayed in one place, as we moved around from bar to bar across all different areas of the city. The third time we met up, we went for a trail run through a local forest preserve.  Basically, it did not take long for me to be head over heels into this guy.

The Group Date

Ahhh, the group date.  The name is deceiving because it really isn’t much of a date at all, and rather it is just one big group hang out.  These “dates” rarely provided the opportunity for any of the relationships to really progress.  Even if a girl was able to steal the bachelor for a moment alone, most of the time they ended up just making out.  If there was any sort of conversation that occurred, it was usually short-lived.  When you look at it, the only thing these group dates would really progress towards would be a better chance to get their name on the next one-on-one date card.

group date letdown

Ok, so I may not have had a GROUP date with my guy, but after the flurry of initial dates that we had over the first few weeks of knowing each other, we started to have more “hang outs” than actual dates.  This typically consisted of me going to his apartment, we would make some dinner, eat it while watching a movie, and then we would go to his room to hook up.  Rarely was there a chance for any real conversation, and when there was, it became incredibly obvious that he had a serious case of the Juan Pablo Syndrome.  Too many times I would listen to him tell me about his life, but very rarely did he ask me about mine.  I had a great time on these hang outs, but each time the scene repeated itself, the more and more I started to become frustrated.

The Insecurities Start to Build

When there are so many gorgeous girls all competing for one guy, it is easy for The Bachelor contestants to get insecure about their own relationship with him.  This is especially true for the girls that had one-on-one dates early on in the season but then suddenly find themselves only seeing him during group dates or pre-rose ceremony cocktail hours.  When they start receiving less and less attention from the bachelor, their emotions run high and anxiety sets in as they fear they are about to get their hearts broken at the next rose ceremony.

andi disappointed

Yep, same thing happened to me.  Early on, we were going out on the town and talking texting on an every day basis.  This still continued as we found ourselves just hanging out more often, and I was okay with it.  But then when I would try to make real plans, they wouldn’t really go anywhere.  Then one week, I just stopped hearing from him.  He would respond to questions, but it was obvious that something was up.  Since this was the first time I was beginning to develop real feelings for someone in so long, I started to have some major anxiety.  My woman’s intuition knew that this was not right, and I knew that I was going to get hurt.

“Ladies, This Is the Final Rose This Evening”

Thanks for pointing out the obvious, Chris Harrison.  Once the final rose is handed out, some girls are completely shocked, while others had seen it coming.  Some cry an ugly cry in front of the bachelor and the cameras, and others keep themselves composed – or at least long enough until they are in the limo and can turn their heads from the camera.  As for the bachelor, sometimes he has stringed the girl along for a while and dramatically cuts her loose at the last second, and other times he lets her go early and saves her from falling too deeply.  When he tells them why, sometimes he sugarcoats his reasoning, and other times he is much more honest.  Either way, it leaves the girl upset… but it is usually for the best because if it didn’t happen that episode, then it still probably would have inevitably happened in a later episode.

rose ceremony elimination

As I had expected, something was up, and Hinge guy gave the rose to someone else.  No, literally, he did actually choose someone else over me.  He told me over text and explained how he really liked the time we spent together but that he recently and unexpectedly met someone else and wanted to see where things could go with her.  While I am sure he sugarcoated some things, I am glad that he was honest and did not string me along.  The sour ending left a sting for a short while, but I soon recovered and am thankful for the experience and am happy to know that I am still capable of feeling feelings for someone.

So that is that.  Last I checked, he was still dating this other girl, so good for them.  Obviously, I was way more into it than he was, and chances are that he probably only saw me as a hookup.  But hey, the hookup was good, I discovered new bars around the city, I got great new distance running tips, and I’ve moved on.  I’m fabulous, and now I can find a guy that I can actually wear heels with.

Fabulous Heels

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