So I watch The Bachelorette (of course I do). And of course, I have engaged in many-a discussion about the behavior of one Bentley Asshat McGee. (True story: that's actually on his birth certificate.)
And I've heard some arguments in lil Bentler's defense that I really just don't care for.
Look, let's all agree that dating is just the worst. No one likes it, but it's a necessary evil for finding your special shmoopy someone.
And in dating, you are bound to both (a) get your feelings hurt and (b) hurt someone else's feelings.
However, this doesn't mean you get to be cavalier about it.
No, Bentley did not like Ashley. There is no law saying that he had to.
But did he have to act like he liked her? Did he have to literally pick her up and carry her over to the fireplace to make out with her? Did he have to break up with her, not by explaining the truth -- that he just didn't think they were a good match -- but by claiming he had to go but didn't want to shut the door on their relationship, knowing full-well he didn't want a relationship with her?
It seems to me there are a lot of people out there who think that because dating inherently involves some amount of deception or rejection, they can behave however they would like.
I had a friend once justify the mass "What are you doing tonight?" text to 10 or so girls with the reasoning that only girls who aren't busy would respond and it's better to be busy than alone on a weekend. What's more, he expressed irritation that any girl would express irritation at such a lovely overture.
But while his reasoning may have been true enough, isn't it also true that no one likes to be treated as an interchangeable place-holder? And just because something hypothetically wouldn't 't hurt your feelings, does that excuse you from trying to understand that, yes, it does actually hurt someone else's feelings?
(Seriously gents - is it really so onerous to text girls individually?)
Look, I'm not going to pretend I'm some sort of saint. I ignore texts from boys I don't like, I've done the fade-out-rather-than-actually-break-up. It's not nice, I know it.
But there are some things that are categorically mean. Leading someone on. Pretending you care more for someone than you really do. Lying. Cheating. Using someone for his big wallet. Using someone for her pretty face.
Yeah, dating sucks.
But you don't have to make it worse.