This season of the Bachelorette has been eventful, to say the least. A lot has happened to draw millions of viewers across the United States to tune in each Monday night. In fact, it's caused so much publicity that even I, someone who has never had even a slight interest in the Bachelor or the Bachelorette, to pay attention to the topics it has stirred up. One particular argument that seems to have come up times and time again is the fight between Luke Parker and Hannah Brown.
Although I haven't sat down and fully watched the entire season beginning to end, I have seen enough regarding the two to form enough of an opinion. I am open to different viewpoints from those who have watched beginning to end and know the situation a lot better than I do, so take what I say with a grain of salt and educate me kindly if I'm wrong.
At first, Luke wasn't awful to Hannah. In fact, he actually may have landed himself in the group that people hoped would advance, along with Tyler, Jed, and Peter. However, as the season progressed, it became apparent that Luke very much lacked emotional intelligence, something that Hannah consistently gave him grace on and spoke to him about maturely in the hopes that he might work on it for their future. Yet instead, she was met with some arrogance on his end and stubbornness. He consistently thought he knew what she wanted and what she was saying, but also consistently completely missed the point. As they say, communication might be key, but comprehension is vital.
On this particular subject alone, Luke did lack genuine emotion and vulnerability. Hopefully, that is something that he can see now or will see in the future for his relationships down the road. However, it was clearly something he was missing during the season. It was obvious he wasn't uncomfortable reaching into new depths with Hannah and exposing the parts of him that hurt from his past or even expressing things or situations in the current that hurt him. Someone who is bothered by nothing seems to stand for nothing as well, which gives off a completely in genuine demeanor, whether he meant to or not. In his defense, I'm sure there are a lot of things from the past that hurt deeply that he hasn't dealt with and doesn't want to because sometimes the past can be difficult, and acting like you don't care can be easier than what it was like when you did. Regardless, though, Hannah has been wide open about her screw-ups, hurts, and heartbreaks with those she dated I'm sure on an even deeper level than any of the viewers even knew about. It's time to face the music, Luke, because the thing about running from a demon is the moment you get tired it all catches up.
As a side note, again, someone who acts like they are unbothered by everything gives off the impression that they are ingenuine. They give off not just the impression that they are relaxed, but that they go with the flow, whatever that might be. This means that if the flow is talking about you behind your back with a handful of people, they'll either join in or not stand up for you. This means that offensive jokes will make them laugh along or they'll say nothing to stop them. This means that if they aren't a participant, they are complacent, which is really just as bad. It's a quality you wouldn't want in any good friend, let alone a life partner. They should be bothered by things and stand up for the right things. It's good character. Otherwise, you can be sure that you are not an exception to the rule.
As the season continued, Luke still seemed ingenuine by some of the things he said. I honestly think Luke had very good intentions and probably a very good heart throughout the show, but often got himself in bad positions by the way he worded what he wanted to say. While nothing he said was inherently wrong at its core as far as I saw, the way he worded it definitely initially would tick me off. While it was sweet that he thought Hannah was perfect, it was wrong that he told her she probably thought the same of him. I feel he probably has been hurt before and hoped that she would feel that way about him as a form of reassurance, but it came across ignorant and as though he thought he was flawless himself. Luke saying he was unbothered by the guys not liking him might have been true, and he shouldn't care what others think as a leading man, but Hannah wanted to know what his thought process was throughout all the tiffs. Was he bothered at first before he realized it didn't matter? Did he find any truth to what the other guys were saying? Was he confused at what he was doing wrong? THAT is what Hannah wanted to know.
There was only one thing that I could agree with Luke on in the series, despite how poorly he worded it and went about it, and that was when he confronted Hannah on sleeping with other people. No one who is dating someone wants them to be sleeping with other people. If you have a boyfriend or girlfriend, you aren't going to like it if you found out they slept with someone else. There is not a soul who would if you genuinely care about someone. What I believe Luke meant to say was that it hurt him that she was, and he didn't want to date someone who was comfortable sleeping around while dating other people. His standard in that was different from hers, it was a point they disagreed, and therefore if that were the case then the relationship really wasn't for him, which is okay. It is okay to have different standards and to decide the relationship won't work out because of them. It isn't fair of Hannah to think that is a ridiculous request of someone she is also dating.
However, at the same, Hannah had already dealt with a lot from Luke, so getting defensive would easily be my gut reaction as well considering not only how he worded things then, but many times prior. The way he came across was definitely condescending and deserved a comeback. He doesn't have the right to shame someone else when he is just as much of a sinner as the rest of the world. Can he address something he does not like in the relationship or somewhere he thinks she might be acting inconsiderate or herself and others? Absolutely. But could he have done it in a much more caring, loving, and compassionate way? Absolutely. Hannah can make her decision to sleep with others, but Luke also can make his decision on whether or not he wants to stick in the relationship because of that. It was clear Hannah did like Luke and wanted to give him the chance to better himself, so his words could easily hurt her as they did, but Luke needed to take the opportunity as well. His words only seemed to be manipulative when he later returned after they established they might not be a good fit together considering their inability to communicate effectively, making it appear that he was only saying what he said to get her to stop instead of because he cared or because he felt it would affect their relationship in a negative way.
To add on, Hannah claims she is a devote Christian, which very may well be true. Christians mess up, and it shouldn't be something that they beat themselves up over for the rest of their lives because there is grace. Jesus died for our sins and the debt was paid. However, grace comes with repentance, and repentance comes when you feel grief for sinning and try to turn away from that sin. Grace is not something to be taken advantage of. It isn't a sin on Saturday and ask for forgiveness Sunday type of deal. The idea is to turn from sin, which seemed to be something that Hannah was not doing. She was broadcasting her sin, laughing about it on air, showing no remorse and seeming to use "Jesus still loves me" as an excuse. The goal is to try to hold yourself to a higher standard. You can tell someone who is sorry from someone who isn't because someone who repented would be hurt by the mere thought of ever sinning again.
There were so many things I loved about Hannah. I loved how strong of a female role she was. I loved that despite being hurt in the past, she wore her heart on her sleeve. She could always be vulnerable, which made her undoubtedly authentic and genuine. I LOVED how well she was able to express herself in every single situation she was met with. There were times that Hannah found words to say to Luke or others on the show that I had been searching for in my own life, that I had stumbled and rambled over before, yet she made them so clear cut, concise, and to the point that I wondered how I hadn't been able to do so before. However, I did think she could have handled herself a little better when it came to conduct on physicality in her relationships and the general public.
In the end, Luke and Hannah both had areas that they could grow and mature in if they choose to. Odds are Hannah Brown is going to continue to live her life without regard to anything anyone, including me, says, and so is Luke Parker. In the end, though, I think we can all agree that Jed might be the new most hated and Tyler deserves the whole world.