I've written once about the Bachelor franchise and my opinions, but rarely have I ever praised them.
On this past week's Bachelor in Paradise, they show a couple's "most heartbreaking fight."
Derek and Taylor are Bachelor nation fans' favorite because of their quick love and also because they seem to be the only couple who isn't playing games with each other (Dean).
Taylor and Derek start a discussion about their relationship. Taylor tells Derek that he's not the man she would have pictured herself with, but she really likes him, however, there are things that he needs to work on, like any relationship. Well, Derek only hears the part where she says he's not the man she would have pictured herself with and responds with "Fuck you."
Taylor is triggered by this (like actually triggered, not the new millennial definition) and it causes a riff in their relationship. Later on, viewers find out that Taylor was verbally abused in her past relationships and that type of language is a trigger for her. This issue is later resolved with Derek apologizing for crossing her boundaries and Taylor apologizing for how she phrased things.
They teach an important lesson that not enough TV shows discuss. Verbal abuse and triggers aren't a laughing matter. Language like that shouldn't be used and people need to respect other's boundaries and past experiences.
My dear, brilliant friend, Grace Sallee, recently wrote about toxic relationships. She writes that "It’s okay to walk away from toxic people. It’s okay to let go of people. It’s hard, I get that. Once you have a close connection with someone, you deal with the good and the bad, but sometimes the bad begins to harm you."
If you are like Taylor and your past relationships has verbally abused you or things have just taken a wrong turn, I want you to know that you deserve more than that. You deserve the world and someone to make you feel safe. You deserve to have a Derek who apologizes and a relationship where you can talk about triggers and boundaries.
In today's society, all people want is to fit in and feel secure. You deserve that security.
I hope you have friends that can lift you up or you believe in a God that can lift you up so that you are able to lift yourself up and take control.
You are more important than the person trying to bring you down.
(So Taylor and Derek, thank you for reminding me of an important lesson about my self-worth, the importance of feeling safe, and the importance of speaking up.)