Why Not Average Joe: Exploring Melanas Choice

Admit it. You snickered, rolled your eyes and laughed out loud as the group of "Average Joes" filed out of their bus to meet Melana that first night. You probably thought "no way" as you settled in for a soap about a beautiful girl's rejection of the geeks. Indeed, Melana herself stated, "Someone is messing with my head", as the next "average" guy stepped down to meet her.

However, in the episodes that followed, there was bonding, friendship and attraction between Melana and a number of the guys. It actually began to look as though she was falling for at least one or two of them. Then came the twist. The "gorgeous" guys were sent in to challenge the Joes and test Melana's ability to see past the surface and choose based on what each man had to offer as a total package.

At that point, what were you thinking? Who was your front-runner? Did you think it possible that the bonds that had been formed would be strong enough to hold Melana's attention- and heart? I'm guessing that many people did. I know a lot of people were routing for Adam or Zack.

So, what happened? In the days that followed the final episode, virtually all of the commentary centered on a very basic and "simple" explanation of Melana's choice. They all said it was about "looks".

While I agree that physical attraction played a significant role, I believe Melana's choice involved more than this. How we choose has to do with many things. These include:

* physical attraction

* shared interests

* social compatibility and friendship

* intellectual compatibility

* ability to communicate

* basic values

* level of self-knowledge

* level of maturity and dating experience

* personal and family goals

I am going to do a brief examination of how these played a role in Melana's final decision. Follow along with me and think about how these factors come into play in your meeting and dating life. Perhaps Melana's public struggle with these can provide some valuable insights into how you choose potential partners and assist you in your desire to make the best (and healthiest) choice for you.

Let me begin by stating an obvious point that we are all aware of. The circumstances and setting of the meeting and dating that takes place on a "reality" show have little resemblance to the real world of dating. Dates are chosen, as is the person who will be doing the choosing. They are sequestered in a beautiful, romantic place where all their physical needs are attended to and everyone can present themselves in their best light. The real world of money, time, energy and the need for making dating plans are all handled by professionals who go "all out". Even though the contestants spend weeks together, they are not confronted with the real life issues that singles in the dating world must deal with. Therefore, the circumstances are idyllic. This has pros and cons. I think we all have a pretty good idea of what these are. The major plus is that everyone can present himself or herself "equally". The major drawback is that each relationship is limited to this fantasy existence, and there is no opportunity to see each other deal with the day-to-day challenges of real life.

Stepping back into the episodes prior to the inclusion of the "hunks", can you recall the great dates that Melana had with the guys? The group dates were full of laughs and bonding on a friendship level. We all enjoyed watching Dennis get to the top and see the support and caring that were shown towards him. With each week, Melana discussed and demonstrated the attractions she was forming with different guys on different levels. A few rose to the front of the line as she eliminated based on not just looks, but on the "connection" she felt with each. Indeed, she used this word a lot. This connection was formed by the elements of:

* social compatibility and friendship

* ability to relate

* comfort level

* basic attraction

Just prior to the twist episode, Adam and Zack seemed to be the front-runners. In their individual dates, they were able to get to a deeper level of communication. Personality issues arose. There was discussion centering on likes, dislikes, attitudes and some of their own personal and family history. They began to get a sense of each other's basic values and goals. Their ability to relate verbally and intellectually started to come into play.

At this point, Adam seemed a strong front-runner. Do you remember what qualities Melana highlighted as she discussed her feelings about him? "He's funny, down-to-earth, smart, liked by everyone, and just a great guy." Do you remember their first "passionate" kiss, and how surprised Melana was at what a great kisser Adam is? We have to wonder why she was so surprised. Perhaps because he didn't look like the type? But he clearly was. It appeared that Melana was forming a strong bond with him that included all of the elements that love requires- including physical attraction.

So what happened?

Enter the hunks. Do you remember Melana's face as they were brought into the room? Pleased would be a good description. Her physical attraction to them was obvious and strong. She used words like "handsome, great body, too pretty", to describe them. Still, she was drawn to Adam.

As the show went on, Melana had individual dates. She decided to go out with the new guys to give them a chance. She eliminated Zack, to whom she had admitted having a strong physical attraction for, while being unsure about his other attributes.

Towards the end, it was Adam vs Jason. Who would she choose and why? Clearly, the way Jason looked was a major factor in his staying on. However, Melana also talked about her comfort with him and the ease she felt in their ability to communicate. Melana also rated their physical intimacy as great. Indeed the scenes shown from their dates demonstrated a strong chemistry. Melana was very drawn to him. But what about Adam?

Do you remember how Melana showed mixed feelings on her second to last date with Adam? She expressed that she felt conflicted. Adam was hurt and said so. Even so, they were able to go on with the date and have a pretty good time. On their last date, there seemed to be a real bond. Melana got a lot more information about Adam. He is successful, hard working, has many close friends and healthy family relationships. Clearly, she was impressed and drawn to all of these traits. But not enough....

So why her final choice? Melana found friendship, good communication, compatibility, mutual respect, comfort and attraction with Adam. She also found these with Jason. In addition, there was a STRONGER physical attraction. Remember her words, "look at him, who could resist that face".

The answer for her final decision? I can only speculate here. However I believe it had to do with her level of maturity and self-knowledge. Someone with greater self-awareness, a strong handle on their life goals and a level of maturity that teaches us that looks fade while other attributes become stronger over time; may very well have chosen Adam. Instead, Melana appeared to have succumbed to the immediate passions of the here and now, instead of looking ahead to who would be the best choice for husband, father and partner in the future and sometimes harrowing journey of commitment, marriage and family life.

I read with interest that Melana and Jason's "relationship" appeared to be over after their return from their final fantasy date. I was not at all surprised. One can only guess what went on. I think a good guess is that they got to know each other better without the pressure and competition that had come before.. Perhaps Melana began to see that along with his sweetness, Jason had a strong passivity towards life, whereas Adam strove for achievement through hard work and determination. Jason seemed to be in need of time and maturity before he would be able to move towards an intimate and committed relationship and the responsibilities and challenges that come with it.

No one but Jason and Melana will ever know for sure. I just can't help but wonder if she will regret her decision and wish she had been older and wiser when she was asked to make it.

I'd love to hear YOUR thoughts and ideas regarding Melana and her choice of Jason. If you'd like to express them, please go to http://www.consum-mate.com to contact me.

Toni Coleman is a licensed therapist and relationship coach in private practice in McLean, Virginia. She specializes in working with singles who want to create lasting, intimate relationships. Toni has over 20 years of post-masters experience in relationship counseling and coaching with singles and couples. She is the founder and President of LifeChange Coaching and Consum-mate Relationship Coaching. She developed and teaches the Creating Lasting Relationships Training, a tele-workshop designed to help singles to define, implement and fulfill their life and relationship goals. She has also written numerous email classes for singles on all aspects of meeting, dating and relating. She is the author of the email newsletter, The Art of Intimacy, which goes out to thousands of subscribers monthly. http://www.consum-mate.com

First Date ? Tips for Men

You are on your way to your first date with her. Probably a blind date.... Read More

From Friend To Boyfriend

One of the most frequent questions I am asked is "How do I go from... Read More

When Should You Give Up on Chasing a Woman?

This week I want to discuss chasing women, or rather I should say, when is... Read More

Secret Dating Tips - Top Secrets of a Sex Magnet

In any group of girls, there's usually one who's getting all the attention. You know,... Read More

CyberDating Lie Detecting

Did you know that Online Dating is the top moneymaker on the Web? Chances are... Read More

Hot Women And Eye Contact

For a while now I've been wondering why some women always make eye contact and... Read More

Internet Dating Tips for Beginners

There are lots of Internet dating sites available. Some are completely free and others are... Read More

Online Dating ? How To Avoid Faked Photos

One of the great things about online dating is the ability to read the profiles... Read More

Building Self Confidence

The building of self-confidence is not difficult, but it requires patience and intelligent effort. There... Read More

The Language and Meaning of Flowers

Sweet flowers alone can say what passion fears revealing Thomas Hood poem, The Language of... Read More

Got Attitude?

Probably you do have attitude, but what is it? Jaded, self-protective? Frightened? Is "scared to... Read More

Does Online Dating Work?

Dating Online is currently the Internets biggest craze, and its here to stay! But does... Read More

How To Land The Catch Of Your Life Without Becoming Sharkbait

However you like to do it, dating is a dangerous game. Not talking to strangers... Read More

Web Cams: Windows on the World

The webcam has brought a truly amazing variety of experience to the desktop user giving... Read More

10 Tips for Seniors Dating Online

We would like to take a few minutes of your time to discuss safety while... Read More

Men On Dating- Timing, Turn-offs and Keepers

Dear Relationship Coach-"We met online and seemed to hit it off right from the start.... Read More

Great Tips For A Safe Online Dating Experience

Dating can be scary no matter how or where you meet. Maybe he hasn't shaved... Read More

Summertime and New Romance

The tempertures are rising and romances are in full bloom as we move into the... Read More

How To Gain Her Trust From The Start

For a woman to have sex with a guy, she must not only be attracted... Read More

Personal Values and Christian Dating

Personal values is an important point when it comes to Christian dating. Being a Christian... Read More

Do You Desire Love and Marriage? How Should You Prepare Yourself?

The rate of new love and marriages is rising as fast as the divorce rate.... Read More

Is Online Dating For You After A Divorce?

Until Death Do You Part?That certainly was a lie. Your spouse got the house, a... Read More

Funnel Your Way to Love

I call it "The Funnel." And it's the best way to view your online dating... Read More

Looking for Love in All the Wrong Places?

You've hung out in bars, you've answered the personals, you've maxed out the plastic trolling... Read More

Online Dating -- Facts About Your Online Profile

Times are changing and online dating is becoming a more and more popular way of... Read More

Dress for Dating Success: Clothes to Attract the Man of Your Dreams

In order to attract the man of your dreams, it helps to dress in a... Read More

Online Dating - Top Tips for Success!

A few months ago I became single again after a long-term relationship, and decided to... Read More

Donald Trump and the Apprentice Rules Applied to Dating

I was reading an article about the Apprentice and some of the rules that Donald... Read More

Gay, Single, & Loving It!

Introduction We live in a society that places high value and expectation on being in... Read More

Christ-Centered Life on Dating

In a contemporary Christian world, there is a hidden reality that believers today set aside... Read More

Are Parents Still Stopping You from Having a Girlfriend?

There are a lot of young men who find it difficult to go out and... Read More

Selecting an Online Dating Site

So you are thinking of giving online dating a try yourself. Here are some tips... Read More

Dating at Midlife: Whats First?

More American women over 45 are single, than ever before. According to the latest population... Read More

Overcoming Your Nervousness About Talking to Women

Standing at the magazine rack thumbing through Cosmo, she has the most gorgeous face you've... Read More

How to Finally Approach the Women You Lust for

We've all been there. You have been meeting her accidentally in the hall for a... Read More

How To Choose a Dating Service

There are so many dating sites out there, hundreds if not thousands, how do you... Read More

Online Dating, Why Not?

So, you're looking to meet that "special someone". You have tried the bars, blind dates,... Read More

Help! Im Single for the First Time in Years!

You're back on the dating scene. But you're worried as it's been a long time... Read More

1000 Proof Liquor

Each and every woman is an actress in their own way, and many of the... Read More

Dating Advice! Where Safety Always Comes First

Dating advice for people dating online, where safe dating will always be a priority!For many... Read More

Dating Tip for Women: Dont Work Too Hard

Remember Jerry Hall, the model who married Mick Jagger? Jerry was famous for making this... Read More

Long Distance Dating: Romantic or Frantic?

It sounds like something out of a fairy tale. She's in Los Angeles: he's in... Read More

Hooking Up vs. Lasting Love: Its Your Choice

"hooking Up" - "friends with benefits" - "booty call"These terms have become all too familiar... Read More

She Rejected You: Some Reasons Why It Happened & What You Can Do?

There is just something that makes women NOT get attracted to men who have lower... Read More

The Right Dating Site For You

There are so many dating sites on the net these days. The secret is to... Read More

10 Keys to Getting Along With Single Women For Successful Dating, Seduction

1. When with a woman on a date, under no circumstances whatsoever, look at and... Read More

Dating Online ? Can Be Less Stressful

Dating is a challenge at any age and for both women and men. Ladies worry... Read More

Four Dating Rules You Must Know To Transform Your Love Life

Dating is the first step to love. I am going to give you a simple... Read More

Dating After Divorce: Things To Think About Regarding Dating After Divorce

Dating after divorce is a much debated topic due to the psychological and emotional impact... Read More

Single Sites Are A Great Tool To Network And Develop Fun And Spontaneous Relationships Online

If you're tired of the boring and repetitive local dating scenes, then you should consider... Read More