The most recent season of The Bachelor is wrapping up. Current bach Arie Luyendyk Jr. has just had three nights of amazing, intimate, intense ... conversations with the final three during their Fantasy Suite Dates. Now only two remain: Becca K. and Lauren B.—neither of whom have herpes, if they've made it this far. How do we know this? Because of Amy Kaufman, Los Angeles Times writer and author of the upcoming Bachelor Nation: Inside the World of America’s Favorite Guilty Pleasure.
In an excerpt from her new book that the New York Post published, Kaufman shares the intense and odd process contestants go through to get on The Bachelor and The Bachelorette. If potential candidates have their video application selected, they fly out to LA and the real vetting process begins.
The first step, according to Kaufman, is a personality quiz with a 150 questions including, "Do you think you can control things with your mind?" Questions are often repeated with different wording to catch any slip-ups. Candidates then meet with one producer before going through what Kaufman describes as a "rapid-fire" session with "roughly two dozen producers." Candidates have to answer the expected questions about ideal partners and dates, as well as more odd ones such as "Would they rather have a DDD bra cup or write a cover story for Vogue?" Both?? Neither?? I would not do well in this high-pressure scenario.
The show's therapist is up next, grilling candidates on personal history like mental health battles and relationships. While show creator Mike Fleiss stated in 2012 producers are "so tough and stringent" about who is actually allowed on, anyone who's seen the show knows that it feeds on people who let their public facade crack.
The final hoop candidates have to jump through is medical testing. Candidates divulge their medical history and go through drug and STD testing. Apparently, this final test is the most difficult.
“As soon as the medical tests came back, you’d see that herpes was the biggest thing,” Ben Hatta, a former assistant to Mike Fleiss, told Kaufman. “And sometimes you’d be the first person to tell a contestant that they had herpes. You’d be like, ‘Uh, you should call your doctor.’ Why? ‘We’re not going to be able to have you on our show, but you should call your doctor.’ Then they’d realize they’d been denied from ‘The Bachelor’ and now a bunch of people knew they had herpes.”
The Bachelor, it seems, is doing good work in educating people about herpes.
After all this testing, contestants live under 24-hour surveillance with nothing to entertain them: no books, TV, internet, exercise equipment. Nothing but the potential for love–which usually doesn't pan out!