Yes, it’s true that reality TV love can be manufactured, but, in this case, Ashley Hebert and J.P. Rosenbaum have found true love while filming ‘The Bachelorette’.
Who says that real love has to happen only under “normal” circumstances? And that “normal” circumstances means that two people have to have met at a party, at work, in college or through a blind date? And that they have to have known each other for at least a year before making the ultimate commitment?
And who says love will be doomed if a couple meets on the set of a reality conjured-up love and dating show like The Bachelorette?
Here’s the thing — the reality is that couples who fall in love and stay in love for the rest of their lives meet in all kinds of conventional AND crazy ways.
There is no guarantee that people who have dated for 10 years in a small town before walking down the aisle will stay married any more than a couple like Ashley and J.P., who met while she tested out 25 different husband candidates for TV?
It’s not how a couple meets or even how long they know each other that determines whether romance will burn hot for a lifetime or fizzle out in a flash.
It doesn’t hurt that the couple also has some intense physical chemistry, to go along with all that, and Ashley and JP clearly get a ten in that department.
But more important — watching them on Jimmy Kimmel Live last night, Aug. 1, in their first post-Bachelorette interview, it was clear that they are exceptionally relaxed and comfortable together.
They smiled, laughed and their faces glowed as they sat and talked with Jimmy. Ashley repeatedly leaned into JP as she talked and they laughed together. JP seemed completely accepting of Ashley and wasn’t even phased when he was shown a clip of Ashley making out with the other finalist, Ben Flajnik. He is confident enough in himself and secure enough in his relationship to have taken that unpleasant surprise in stride.
The couple revealed that they’ve spent three hours a night talking on Skype for months while they’ve had to be separated for the show, and that’s given them more time to get to know each other — a very good thing.
The pair are old enough — she’s 27, he’s 34 — to have experienced life and other romances and to know that this is the right person to spend their lives with.
They also both have “a life.” Neither “needs” the other, to make a “life.” Ashley is in her last year of her training to be a dentist. JP works as a construction manager at the J Companies in NYC. They’re both ambitious yuppies who can complement each other
The pair have a real and do-able plan to get through a year of semi-separation since she will be based in Philadelphia to finish her training and JP is in NYC. They’re being realistic and supportive of each other’s career aspirations.
And they are comfortable with each other’s families.
In effect — they may have met in an unusual way and under the glare of TV cameras — but they are “normal” people who are looking forward to “a humble normal life,” together, they have explained. Neither is pursuing a career in the spotlight as professional reality TV stars — thank the Lord, for them and their marriage!
Their desire to live a “normal” life bodes well for their success. The first Bachelorette, Trista Rehn, is still happily married to firefighter Ryan Sutter living in Eagle County, Colorado, with their two young children.
Bachelorette Ali Fedotowsky is still happily engaged and living with insurance executive, Roberto Martinez — another “normal” couple, who met under non-normal circumstances.
Meanwhile, couples who are in the public eye and met up under equally spotlight-driven circumstances are also defying the supposedly long odds to have happy unions — yup, there’s Khloe Kardashian and Lamar Odom, who married after knowing each other a month, and Brad and Angelina, who infamously fell in love on the Mr. & Mrs. Smith set.
If those couples could still be going strong, then there’s no reason that glamorous meeting circumstances are a relationship-killer.
If anything, Ashley Hebert and JP Rosenbaum, will have a wonderful “how we met” story to tell their children and grandchildrem. JP will always be proud, he beat out 24 other men to win Ashley’s heart and the pair will share a unique bonding experience that few others can match.
So mazel tov, Ashley and JP! We can’t wait until your wedding and then your 25th wedding anniversary!
— Bonnie Fuller