Why Doesn’t Des Propose Instead of the Other Way Around on The Bachelorette?

This season of The Bachelorette has been an emotional roller coaster, and America is tuning in tonight to possibly see a proposal.

Bachelorette Desiree (Des) Hartsock  has carefully narrowed down her options of potential mates from 25 down to 2… in the type of fantasy male-to-female ratio any woman would love.  On the season finale, she’ll determine whether either Chris Siegfried or Drew Kenne. will be her future husband.

(Or, as many fear after the Brooks debacle, neither.)

But it matrimony is proposed tonight, either Chris or Drew will get down on one knee. In many ways, The Bachelorette is not the most traditional of television franchises.  One person chooses from amongst dozens, in a near polygamous living situation.  Serial make out sessions, hot tubs, and even “overnight dates” establish the tone. Yet, there’s one tradition they haven’t shirked: the traditional proposal of a man to a woman. But why doesn’t she propose instead of the other way around?

Of course, there are no laws prohibiting women proposing to men. Queen Victoria — the 20-year-old monarch – proposed to her first cousin in October 1839.  (She’d already been Queen for two years and thought it would be more appropriate for the monarch to be the one asking.) The serially married Zsa Zsa Gabor proposed to all nine of her husbands. And Elizabeth Taylor proposed to her co-star Montgomery Clift (who didn’t want to become one of her many husbands).

Though Victoria and Albert were married for 22 years and had nine children, Zsa Zsa and Liz Taylor’s proposals weren’t necessarily good omens for the success of their marriages.  No matter how far “women’s rights” have progressed, there’s still an emasculating stigma associated with inverting the traditional gender roles.

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Perhaps that’s why on The Bachelorette and The Bachelor, the men are expected to select a ring, get down on one knee, and bare their hearts on national television.  In fact, it’s the climax of every season.  (Except the season Brad Womack refused to pick either of his two remaining options.  Will that repeat tonight?)

Consequently, Des might have two men down on one knee asking for her hand.

This makes the situation particularly awkward since there are two men and only one woman.  Will Des have a heart and stop one of them or will she let both go through their entire “will you marry me” speeches?

Either way, millions of Americans will tune in tonight to see either Chris or Drew’s profession of love.

Let’s hope that it’s true love that lasts forever, no matter who does the asking!

About Nancy French

Nancy French is a three time New York Times Best Selling Author.


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