Tim Robards and Anna Heinrich are still going strong, having just been on a romantic trip all over Europe.
Sam Wood and Snezana Markoski are engaged, and their relationship has even reached the point where Snezana can be trusted to take Sam’s dog for a walk without him. #notevenlosingthedog #relationshipgoals
Sam Frost and Sasha Mielczarek are soul mates, as evidenced by the fact Sam shaves Sasha’s back hair.
And then… well, then there’s Blake. But we don’t talk about Blake.
So why does this formula work so well? What is it that makes people really feel as though they’re falling in love after just a few dates?
Guys, it’s f**king SCIENCE.
You might have noticed a trend among the types of dates contestants go on in The Bachelor and The Bachelorette — namely, they tend to jump off/out of things.
They have picnics in hot air balloons.
They play soccer in those weird balls.
They go on fancy boat rides and fly over Palm Beach in a goddamn sea plane.
The common denominator? Arousal. Mmm...arousal.
GET YOUR MIND OUT OF THE GUTTER.
Not sexual arousal. Physiological arousal.
In the 1970s, two psychologists named Donald Dutton and Arthur Aron found arousing situations are ideal for enhancing feelings of attraction.
To test this, they had a good-looking female psychologist walk along two different bridges — one shaky, rickety one, and one stable, less scary one. They asked men walking past to fill out a questionnaire and write a story. Afterwards, they told each man that the woman's phone number was available if they'd like to call her.
The researchers found those men who had encountered the woman on the shaky bridge wrote more sexual stories (eww) AND were more likely to call the woman. (Um, just as an aside, does anyone know where the closest shaky bridge is around here?)
Watch the sparks FLY. (Post continues after video.)
Basically, the arousal-attraction link works like this: If you do something risky or exciting with someone your body produces a burst of dopamine, which results in heightened arousal.
In the words of psychologist Dr. Diana Kirschner “What happens is that adrenaline is released that mimics the feelings of falling love.”
So if you do an exciting activity, like those we see on dates on The Bachelor and The Bachelorette, your body becomes aroused, and you direct that arousal towards the person you're with.
Adrenalin-inducing activities promote bonding, making you feel far closer to them than if you went on a picnic in a boring park.
Listen: The Binge podcast meets new Bachie Richie Strahan. (Post continues after.)
Researcher Justin Lehmiller recently wrote that this phenomenon has been observed in many other studies since the 1970s.
"What psychologists think is going on is that people are misattributing their physiological arousal to the person instead of to the situation," he wrote.
In conclusion, Richie will find love this season. It might be because he finds the woman of his dreams, or because he pooped his pants when he bungee jumped off the Grand Canyon.
We know which one we'd prefer...