Believe it or not, there are only four women remaining on The Bachelor. Ben has an undeniable connection with each of the remaining women, but there can only be one that he picks at the end. Or so the rules say... who knows what's happening in that extremely confusing promo. One of the strongest connections on the show — for some time now — has been Ben's connection with JoJo. Despite her reservations opening up to him completely, they seem like they'd make a great couple after the show ends. So, does Ben choose JoJo on The Bachelor ? His own problems with JoJo's reservations might hold them back.
It has been a trend on The Bachelor for years to have contestants that don't fully "open up" and express their true feelings to the person they're "TV dating." In the past, it has caused issues in relationship development, eventually leading to heartbreak. Is that the path that JoJo and Ben are set to take, though?
Personally, I can't blame JoJo for having some reservations. The process of The Bachelor is intimidating and emotional, and putting barriers up to protect yourself from getting hurt only seems natural. Right now, she has a 75 percent chance of having her heart broken, and those odds would make anyone put up emotional walls. Unfortunately, Ben — and past Bachelors, to be fair — doesn't see it that way. Ben wants JoJo to open up to him so they can continue to build an authentic relationship. I'd argue that JoJo's reservations is what make their current relationship the most authentic on the show.
On Will You Accept This Podcast?, Bustle's Kelsea Stahler and I discuss JoJo's reservations and how those feelings are perfectly fine to have. We also discuss the impact of Ben's validation to JoJo, and the potential harm that could do in the future.
Unfortunately, Ben's problem with validation can (and will) come back to haunt him. In this particular episode of The Bachelor, Ben took the women to his childhood hometown and brought JoJo to Wrigley Field in Chicago. There, Ben went on to call JoJo "Mrs. Higgins," which in his defense, is what production had printed on the back of her jersey.
That moniker, no matter how innocently said, is just one more thing for JoJo to take as validation that she is going to be the final woman standing. Because I think JoJo is there for "The Right Reasons" I'm hoping she doesn't get too hurt by these things if it doesn't work out for her and Ben. At the same time, I hope that she doesn't feel so forced to open up that all of this will end in heartbreak.
Images: Jean Whiteside/ABC