Love versus Lust on the Bachelorette

I finally had time last night to watch the Bachelorette premiere. Thank you Hulu! 
The group of men chose Kaitlyn over Britt in a nail biting vote. I had watched the Bachelor last season, so I was pleased that she was chosen for the role of the Bachelorette. Her spunky personality and genuineness had endeared her to me and most of the men on the TV show. I don’t always watch the Bachelor/Bachelorette series, but I was planning on watching Kaitlyn’s journey.

But after the premiere I changed my mind.
I chose not to watch her season.

After the rose ceremony, the producers aired a sneak peek at Kaitlyn’s season as the Bachelorette. Like everyone before her, it looked like she was traveling the world, smiling, laughing, and enjoying the pleasures of being the Bachelorette. Until the doomsday music starts . . . a window is shown in a hotel. . . heavy breathing is heard. . .producers knocked on her hotel door. . . and it was revealed that she went too far and had sex with one of the contestants (before the Fantasy Suite.)

I was crushed! My heart ached for her and the other men on the show. Clips were shown of her in tears trying to process the consequences of her choice. Viewers saw a clip of her telling the other men that she had sex. I can’t imagine the heartbreak and pain those other men felt. One voice attempted to explain his pain by saying something along the lines of “You don’t even realize how you're making us feel.” Each of the men still on the “journey to love” with Kaitlyn were probably developing strong feelings for her, and her choice would be a painful betrayal. 

I know the show offers the infamous Fantasy Suite for the final three contestants, and I dislike that idea wholeheartedly. I can’t imagine having three nights with three different people simply to confirm that a physical connection exists. My conservative values, my faith, and my experience as a counselor all assert that such an experience is unhealthy for relationships. The world may call me old-fashioned, but the Fantasy Suite is cheating. The contestants are encouraged to “prove” themselves through sex. That’s not healthy intimacy; it is forced out a fear that you might lose your chance to marry this person. In any scenario other than this TV show, you wouldn’t accept a proposal from someone who slept around with other people the previous week.

In a recent interview, Kaitlyn reported she is not ashamed for having sex on the show. “It’s 2015,” she said. Intimacy has been a part of every relationship she’s had, so why should the relationships on the show be any different? Such is the overwhelming opinion of the world today. I would point out that obviously none of her relationships worked out in the past. Giving of one’s self sexually, outside a committed relationships (aka marriage) usually leads to feelings of isolation and emptiness. Read dating advice boards – sex does not help un-committed relationships. It usually ends them. Even Kaitlyn laments, "You'd think I would learn at this point."

No wonder the other guys on the show were sobbing and upset. How do you build trust with someone who is betraying you in the most vulnerable way? Apparently later in the show there is another steamy scene with a different guy. Kaitlyn’s voiceover says, “I don’t care what people think. This is a marriage and part of that is intimacy.”

No, Kaitlyn. That is cheating. It is the epitome of selfishness. 

Marriage is about trust, faithfulness, and caring about the other person’s feelings. Marriage is blissful and exciting because of that faithfulness. True love grows from selfless virtue, not selfish debauchery. 

This season’s Bachelorette will no longer take up space on my Hulu feed.
I can’t support the blatant selfishness. Am I being too harsh? Ask couples who come in for marriage counseling if working through adultery is fun. You’ll get a big, fat “No!” Kaitlyn’s choice to sleep around, so blatantly and unapologetically, is cheating and betrayal in the most intimate and hurtful way. Those poor men. I was rooting for Kaitlyn to find love, but I predict her careless actions will lead towards heartbreak instead.

Her choices are not nurturing love.
Her lust is simply enjoying the moment.

Leonardo da Vinci wrote, “One can have no smaller or greater mastery than mastery of oneself.”
I hope the future contestants on the Bachelor series learn to control themselves.