REBECCA SPARROW: "I'm 45 and I'm cheering for Sophie Monk because loneliness is brutal."

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You know what I did last night?

I sat on my couch in my PJs with a cup of tea and cheered on Sophie Monk.

I know that The Bachelor/The Bachelorette is a contentious TV series. Sexist. Clichéd. Highly scripted and edited. Contrived. I know. WE ALL KNOW. But I tuned in anyway.

Why? Well for starters because I’m 45 and at the end of the day when my kids are in bed and I’ve picked up 3,274 toy trains – frankly – I watch whatever the hell I want.

But also because I just really love Sophie Monk.  I love how funny she is. How normal.  How self-deprecating. I love that she doesn’t try to be someone or something that she’s not.  That she embraces her inner dag.  And I love that at 37 she is brave enough to go on national TV, is willing to be vulnerable and say, “I really want someone to love. I want to find someone to love who will love me back.”

And dammit, ever since she strolled down a footpath holding a balloon to a Queen soundtrack in that Channel 10 promo I have felt invested in Sophie Monk finding a good man.

Why is Australia so head-over-heels in love with Sophie Monk? Mia Freedman, Holly Wainwright, and Jessie Stephens discuss on Mamamia Out Loud. (Post continues after audio).

I remember watching Popstars on Channel Seven three trillion years ago (maybe it was 2000). It was like the poor man’s Australian Idol except the auditions for Bardot looked like they were held at the Dunder Mifflin Paper Company.

Anyway, even back then when Sophie was a 19-year-old Marilyn Monroe impersonator from the Gold Coast she dazzled. Not because she looked like my childhood Barbie doll (and still does) but because of her wit and charm and spark. Her sense of mischief. Her sense of humour.


And nothing has changed. In the first five minutes of The Bachelorette it was clear she was going to be the most guard-down, authentic, take-no-shit Bachelor or Bachelorette the Australian series has seen. She laughed at herself. She said out loud what so many of us were saying at home. She looked at Ryan like he required a restraining order. And she wore her heart on her sleeve.

"I've fallen in love with Sophie from the very beginning."

So yeah, I’m rooting for Sophie to meet the love of her life on a totally ridic TV dating show but hey, stranger things have happened.

And for what it’s worth, I don’t believe that every person needs a romantic partner to be happy. I don’t think that being single is some kind of curse. I don’t think every woman needs to be someone’s partner or wife. But here’s what I do think. I think loneliness is brutal. BRUTAL. And whether it’s friendships you crave or a romantic connection, I think the world can feel bleak when you’re lonely.

In 2017, when everyone is in a rush to tell you that you’re fine alone, I think it’s brave to say, “Actually, I’m lonely.”

So Sophie, I am here cheering you on with millions of other Australians. We hope you find love because we’ve all fallen in love with you.

Go get ‘em, tiger.

Listen to the full episode of Mamamia Out Loud, below. 

Rebecca Sparrow is the author of Ask Me Anything (heartfelt answers to 65 anonymous questions from teenage girls) and Find Your Tribe (and 9 other things I wish I'd known in high school).  She co-hosts the award-winning health and happiness podcast The Well with Robin Bailey and #TeamGirls in 10 -  a podcast specifically designed for mothers and daughters. Each year Bec talks to thousands of school students about friendship, resilience and giving back.  She is a proud ambassador of  Givit.org.au, The Pyjama Foundation and #TeamGirls.

You can follow her on Facebook.

This content was created with thanks to our brand partner, The Natural Chip Company.

The award-winning podcast Mamamia Out Loud is doing their first live show. There will be laughs, disagreements and you can meet the hosts afterwards! We’re also donating $5 of every ticket price to Share The Dignity so grab your friends and come along to share the love and laughs, get your tickets here.