Do nice guys finish last? The Bachelorette‘s Ben Flajnik did
Apologies to you all in advance for writing about The Bachelorette not once but twice in the span of a week (a crime worthy of the worst kind of punishment — actually having to watch The Bachelorette) but given that last night was the finale, naturally I have to weigh in. After months of hemming and hawing, Ashley Hebert finally made her choice and accepted volatile construction manager JP Rosenbaum‘s proposal while sensitive winemaker Ben Flajnik was left in the dust with a bruised heart and an aching knee. Did she make the wrong choice by choosing lust over someone who loves her?
I don’t know much about Ashley other than a) she annoyingly cries at the drop of a hat b) she’s kind of a slut – what kind of girl takes another guy home before getting engaged to another? c) she can’t spot a player (in fact, she got hosed by Bentley Williams repeatedly) d) she has terrible taste in men e) she’s a bit pathetic when it comes to love.
Why else would she choose a 34-year-old mama’s boy who throws temper tantrums (whom she is moving for, by the way, not vice versa) instead of a lovely, age-appropriate (Ben is 28) attractive winemaker?
Life lesson number one: never underrate the power of sexual attraction.
“We have this passion for each other, but we also have this magical, unspoken connection where it’s so easy and it feels like I’ve known him forever,” Ashley said of JP on last night’s show. “He’s committed and he’s going to be a great family man. He is the total package for me.”
Never mind that this “total package” readily admits that he’s stubborn, frustrated too easily when he doesn’t get his way and lacks in patience. Ash, being 24, is all about the s-e-x, and she wants to have lots of it with JP. Ugh.
Meanwhile, Ben is just about the nicest human on the planet. Even when the Minnie Mouse voiced-brunette leads him on, lets him believe she’s in love and let’s him propose, he still acts like a perfect gentleman.
“You can’t leave something like this on good terms. It’s not possible,” he simply told her after his on-bended-knee rejection. ”I’m in utter shock and disbelief.” He then walked away from her with dignity.
This, in addition to being an effective exit strategy, is the way a nice guy gets his heart broken: gracefully. Indeed, even on the After the Final Rose special, Ben was still completely sweet. “I’m not angry,” he said, though admitted, “There was anger [in the beginning]. You put yourself out there and it doesn’t come true, it’s like being told no! I left with a little bit of dignity I think. I couldn’t have gotten to where I was if it weren’t for you. And for that, thank you. The friendship thing, I think it’ll be there.”
See? What a nice guy!
But we gals, especially when we’re younger, tend to dismiss the good guy in favor of the sexy bad-boy type. I know that, at 30, I still do. I readily admit that I date assholes, which, of course, needs to change ASAP.
Here’s the thing, though: you can’t date someone you aren’t attracted to. It just doesn’t work. Telling yourself that you’ll one day want to jump the bones of the guy who treats you like a queen is only going to lead you to break his heart. It is impossible to create attraction where not exists.
Sexual chemistry is something we always desire in a relationship, but unending passion is hard to sustain and isn’t the basis for a strong relationship. In fact, science has actually proven that we tend to go for the reckless, surly bad boy type over good-natured pretty boys because “smiling” is considered to be too feminine, and we aren’t in to it (unless you’re a lesbian, of course).
It’s pretty darn telling that when asked why she chose JP, the first thing Ashley mentioned was her “passion” for him. Sorry honey, but that ain’t going to last. Ben would have respected and loved her, and treated her like the perfect husband (he would have also given her lots of tasty wine to suck down, but that’s neither here nor there).
So in conclusion, yes, sex is an important part of a relationship — but sexual desire does not last forever. What makes for a lasting relationship is respect, loyalty, trust and love. Jerks don’t have to equal sexy, and nice guys aren’t always losers. Now I just need to keep on telling myself that…