How’s Your Love Life?

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Published on May 1, 2015

Who’s running around in your mind today? As most students at Housatonic already know, dating plays a large role in their personal lives. Whether you’re hanging out at the movies, or even going out dancing, your love life plays a big role in almost anything.

Why are more and more people looking for love and relationships and more and more are feeling heartbreak? A big reason why could be the mass media.

The media portrays dating as a new fad that is constantly being reworked to get viewers. MTV’s Are You the One? basically puts twenty people in one house and have them date each other to find their perfect match. Another show, VH1’s Dating Naked, lets strangers go on first dates together naked.

Housatonic student Robert Housey says, “I think they are unbelievably absurd, no one on there is really looking for love – it’s all to help their careers and no one really falls in love like that, like seriously.”

In a sense it’s true, most of the cast of MTV’s first season of Are You the One were all aspiring models, college graduates trying to land a job in their career fields, or people trying to further their public image.

In addition, MTV’s Are You the One introduced a new twist in its second season. The show’s producers added another girl to the show. 10 guys and 11 girls on the show was designed to create even more drama and tension to continue with its high stride of viewership.

Even though the show did that twist to increase viewers, it definitely worked. It ignited tons of fan response and also tons of social media activity. Housatonic student Alexandra Leon said “I really liked Are You the One, but I really hated when the pairings don’t last after the show. I go through all that while watching and I get to end of it only to find out that it was all for nothing.”

In fact, Leon is right. The vast majority of relationships from dating or dating competition shows don’t last after the show. A really big example is the Bachelor where all the couples, except for two, are not together in real life after the show.

Another Housatonic student, Idalia Shepherd, says, “It would be cool to be on a show like that but, I feel like it’s all scripted. Like people watch that show thinking that that’s how love is and it’s not, it’s not like that at all.”

Idalia Shepherd is also right. The living conditions, along with no privacy, and constantly having cameras on you does take a toll. In fact with most competition dating shows they don’t let the contestants leave the house, which further adds to the breaking point all for more juicy drama and action. It’s almost as if the conditions are unbearable, then to suddenly get thrust back into the real world after the filming done is very taxing. It’s no wonder why most people on those shows don’t stay together for long.

These shows are all simulated to bring out certain sides of people for entertainment and the producers and editors will only show certain material that is appealing to the masses. This is not what happens in real life and all students should not watch these shows with a mindset of thinking that “this is what happens in real life, this is reality TV” because it’s not accurate.

Students should watch the shows for entertainment, but decide the fate of their dating lives separately, not base it off a TV show.