Meeting the Parents
Last night Ben started out not knowing what he was going to do. He was in love with both girls and couldn't see any red flags or areas of concern with either one. They were both great, so how was he to choose? At this point he couldn't imagine letting either girl go, but how was he supposed to propose to one woman while he was also in love with someone else? Good question Ben. Also, way to make your mom (and everyone else) super uncomfortable. This was truly a unique situation for the show, and at the risk of sounding like Chris Harrison, it made for the "most dramatic finale ever".
So, Ben enlisted his parents to help him make this big decision. First, the parents sat down with Ben to see where he was at and were understandably surprised to hear that he loved both girls. His poor mom has been on a roller coaster ride this season. She just wants her son to be happy and find the woman he will spend his life with, so hearing that he was still so conflicted at this point was really hard for her.
They met Lauren first. Maybe it was because she was the first one and they knew that he was also in love with JoJo, but the parents weren't entirely sold on Lauren (at least based on the editing). They thought she was a sweet girl but I don't think they let themselves completely open up to Lauren because they were reserving judgement. That being said, they did have a good point that Ben took to heart. Lauren and Ben haven't really had to go through any trials to this point, so he needs to consider how it would between them during hard times as well. Lauren does tell them that she is ready to get engaged.
Sidenote: She says "I would marry him tomorrow." This is the same thing Ben said at the Women Tell All about the woman he chooses, so I thought that was an interesting tid-bit.
|Mom really liked JoJo.|
So now both girls feel that they are on the same page with Ben and are expecting a proposal... Ugghhh!
Before he can make his decision he has final dates with each of the girls.
Lauren's Final Date
This whole date was really uncomfortable. Lauren can tell that Ben has a lot on his mind and it's confusing for her because she knows that he loves her but she's starting to gather that he might also love JoJo which scares her. He's thinking about what his parents said. He's not sure what a life looks like with Lauren when things get hard because every moment between them has been too perfect. They haven't been tested, and that worries him.
He says "no matter what happens" and then goes on about how much he has appreciated her being there. So that doesn't sound good.Everything has gone so well to this point in their relationship that it's kind of freaking Ben out and he's getting nervous.
|Remember when Ben said this?|
JoJo's Final Date
Going in to this date Ben seemed more at ease, but that first kiss seemed pretty intense. Like a "good bye" kind of intense. Like I'm going to lose you and I'm not quite ready yet. That being said, they have a really good date. They are very good at communicating and talking about the hard things. JoJo brings up the fact that after they are done filming they will have to be apart for a while and then will have to decide where to live to make things work and she tells Ben that she's willing to do whatever it takes to make it work with them.
Ben starts to pull away a little, and JoJo leaves the day portion of the date feeling less confident because he tells her that he is still confused which means that they aren't really on the same page like she thought. She thought she had this in the bag, so hearing that he is confused still is upsetting.
During the evening portion of their date, JoJo asks him straight out if he loves Lauren and he says that he does. It was good that she pushed him to talk about this because even though she was going in to the final day preparing to be proposed to, you have to think there was some part in her mind that was preparing to be sent home.
But Ben really did love her, and he didn't want to say good bye to her. He left both of those dates so confused, praying for clarity. He does tell JoJo that over the course of these two months she has become his best friend (and she says the same about him). This is why I was so nervous. I was pretty sure the producers were pulling a fake out but you just never know. I consider my husband to be my best friend too and in my mind the person who you think is your best friend is the person you should be with so now I'm all kinds of confused!
At this point I'm almost wishing that I had read the spoilers so I could just know who he picks and stop being so stressed out!
JoJo is obviously confused. He's telling her that he loves her, but that he loves someone else too. She feels like that's not okay and she should feel that way! It's not really okay but then I really feel for Ben too. It sucks because my instinct is to assume that Ben is an ass for jerking these girls around and that he shouldn't treat them like this. But I really don't think he is a jerk. He's so obviously torn, and I think it's really hard for him to hurt someone he loves so he's got that added stress on his mind. I think maybe Ben is a magician and is hypnotizing everyone because somehow, even though none of this seems right everyone still loves him, including the girls he's breaking up with! It's a strange season.
Waking up on the morning of the proposal Ben is still conflicted. Apparently he has a chat with Chris Harrison (this is mentioned in After the Final Rose but I don't remember seeing it on the show). Chris asks Ben if there is one girl he can't picture his life without. Then while picking out rings he finally makes it clear that he knows who he can't live without and he knows who he is going to propose to. Now comes the unpleasant part, breaking up with someone he cares so much about.
Okay, it's time.
And then he tells her that he loves Lauren more and it's heartbreaking. At first, I think JoJo is a little pissed. She tells him that he shouldn't have done that (meaning he shouldn't have told her he loved her). But like I said before, I think a small piece of her had prepared for this. She wasn't crushed, the way I expected and I'm so glad! Or maybe she was just under that strange Ben breakup spell (how does he do it??)
After JoJo left, Ben calls Lauren's dad to officially ask his permission to ask Lauren to marry him. He does in fact get his blessing and he's so excited! It is pretty much the cutest and you can see that letting JoJo go has lifted this huge weight off his chest and that he is so excited to ask Lauren to marry him. She says yes of course and they are super happy and cute.
|The first proposal.|
After the Final Rose
Just a couple highlights here.
Ben tells Chris that watching back his break up with JoJo makes his stomach hurt and he imagines it makes the viewers stomachs hurt too. But he doesn't regret telling her that he loved her because he can't focus on regrets, he just has to move forward. He told Lauren everything that went down just after filming wrapped so there were no hurtful surprises as the show aired (smart guy).
JoJo came out and she looked so great! She was sweet and not at all bitter or questioning of Ben. She said that watching the show back actually really helped her. Seeing Ben and Lauren's relationship grow throughout the season she can see why he chose her. She's also friends with Lauren and respects Ben so she's really happy for them. Um, she's super classy. I'm so glad that it didn't turn in to a scornful confrontation like we very often see on this show. That being said, she had a little secret in her pocket that probably helped... JoJo is the next Bachelorette! I am so freaking excited about this! I really wanted it to be her but I thought there was no way considering how in love she was with Ben. I didn't think she'd be over it but it has been a few months so thankfully she is over it enough to start her own journey to find love! Yay! I'm already counting down the days until May 23rd!
All night Chris Harrison tries to make us all believe that Ben and Lauren could be getting married on the spot. I knew that shit wasn't going to happen. But they did fly in Ben's pastor from Indiana and all the parents/family. So unsurprisingly, they did not get married last night but Ben did take advantage of the fact that both their families were there and proposed again!
|The second proposal.|
Despite not getting married last night, they did say that they want a short engagement and Lauren is moving to Colorado within the next couple weeks to live with Ben. So, this is going to move fast and I like it!
Congrats to the newest Bachelor couple!
See you all May 23rd, for the next season of The Bachelorette, can't wait to see JoJo (and her amazing wardrobe) in action!