It’s not easy to be the lead of a mega-popular reality TV franchise. With the intense media scrutiny, constant questions about your judgement and the pressure to choose a partner all within an eight-week time span, we have to cut the men of The Bachelor (and the women of The Bachelorette) a *little* slack—the job isn’t a constant bed of roses. After weeks of seeing Season 24 Bachelor Peter Weber make bad decision after bad decision, deal with a group of contestants from hell and be constantly dragged online (by FLARE, among other publications), I couldn’t help but feel we’d seen this cycle before, in another non-Bachelor-related profession, miles away from the Bachelor mansion in the White House. Because folks, being the Bachelor is *kind* of like being the President of the United States. Seriously.
Hear us out.
Both jobs look super glamorous from afar
While being the leader of the free world and being the leading man dating 30 screaming, insecure women don’t sound like they’d have much in common, probably the biggest similarity between the two is the fact that both roles seem—at least from the outside—like they’d be glamorous and fun. Honestly, name something sexier than endless swanky state dinners and access to nuclear codes. You can’t.
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Both positions offer the intoxicating allure of power (both over an entire nation and a group of former Miss USA contestants), sophistication and an excuse to wear of a lot of nice suits. Not to mention the fact that inhabiting both positions gives you a sort of break from reality. In what other reality would you have eight weeks off to purely focus on your love life in a hyper-produced, pressure cooker of a situation that includes a trip around the world and sex in a windmill? And yes, as the POTUS you’re definitely still working, but it’s not any regular old office job; you’re literally working out of the *White House,* guarded by secret service, with personal chefs at your every beck and call, and quick phoners with Queen Elizabeth across the pond whenever you fancy. Super casual.
Who wouldn’t want to sign up for that?
But you end up having to make a lot of tough decisions
But, like many jobs that even us civilians have, being at the top of the heap in the political and reality TV worlds isn’t *always* as advertised. Despite appearing like a gig where you can make real change while having a chic time, both positions require making some super tough decisions. Maybe it’s whether or not to send home the only emotionally stable and mature women on your season in favour of future Revolve influencers (Justice for Kelley and Natasha!), maybe it’s whether or not to engage in a tough negotiation with a world leader you don’t personally agree with. Perhaps, you have to decide between following your heart and jumping a fence in Portugal to chase after the girl of your dreams, or maybe it’s whether or not to go with the Reagan china over the Clinton set at the next state dinner.
The bottom line is that inevitably, as Bachelor or POTUS, you’ll have to make a difficult decision that a lot of people won’t be happy with. (Or in the case of Season 24 Bachelor Pilot Pete, you’ll crowdsource an answer, throw all your contestants under the bus and pit them against each other, then waffle).
As both the Bachelor and POTUS, you have to deal with *a lot* of ding-dongs
Not only are these two jobs stressful because of the workload and pressure, but because both put you in the path of a lot of certified ding-dongs. As the President of the United States, in theory, you’re meant to be diplomatic and kind to all; but then imagine having to be cordial to someone like Donald Trump?! Honestly, bless President Barack Obama for any and all interactions he had with Trump when he was in office after the former reality star campaigned for Obama’s birth certificate to be made public. (You know, because as a Black man, Trump doubted that Obama could *actually* be an American citizen.) And while it’s to a lesser (and probably less racist) degree, the Bachelor also puts you up close and personal with people who are vindictive, not there “for the right reasons” and, sometimes, just a hot, hot mess. Which is nothing against them, it can just sometimes be annoying to deal with (and to watch on your TV for like five hours a week).
And pretty much everyone ends up hating you
Plus, another perk of the job (and something mostly related to the aforementioned tough decisions you have to make), is that inevitably, pretty much everyone ends up hating you. Take Pilot Pete. Hannah Brown’s Bachelorette cast-off was seen as a hot commodity by a lot of people in Bachelor nation and fans were stoked to see him fly off into the sunset with his own love match. But, as we’ve watched him make bad decisions like it’s his day job, doubt everyone around him and choose partners who are clearly not what we would have expected for him, the shine starts to wear off a bit. And the same can be said for a political leader. Eventually, you’ll have made several calls that people aren’t happy about, both within and outside your own party—you can’t always please everyone. And all it takes—in both cases—is one monumental misstep to tank your whole rep. Like, I don’t know, whispering into one of your contestant’s ears that you love fucking her but don’t love her? (For the record, it was former Bachelor Juan Pablos Galavis who said that, but it could have totally been a political candidate).
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Plus, as the Bachelor and the President, you end up looking tired AF
Listen, Barack Obama has always been, and will always be, a grade-A hunk of man. But it’s a truth universally acknowledged that he was looking a little rough during his presidency. Being president ages you! And that’s not just because you spend anywhere from four to eight years in the White House and the passage of time catches up with you. Being under constant scrutiny and in high stress situations for a prolonged period of time would make anyone’s greys pop out. And the same can be said for the Bach experience. Just look at these side-by-side images of Bachelor Peter, taking mere months apart when he was a contestant on Hannah’s season of The Bachelorette, and while filming his own season of The Bachelor.
— Melly Gee🥂 (@Bachitcrazee) February 11, 2020
THIS. MAN. IS. WRECKED. Legitimately. Look at that glassy-eyed stare. This man has seen things and he will never be the same. Time in the spotlight has clearly *not* done his body good.
But, if Obama is anything to go off of, leaving the White House (and by association the Bach mansion) *does* have a positive effect. Because former POTUS Obama is seriously Benjamin Button-ing right now.
That sliver of ankle! That slim-cut pant! Those tastefully buff arms! In the words of one FLARE editor: “That bootay, it refuses to quit!” It certainly does.
So fear not Presidents and Bachelor leads of the future, at least there is some light at the end of the tunnel.