by Darrin Schenck

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by Darrin Schenck

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So…I have a confession to make. It’s mostly my wife’s fault, but I’m gonna own, it as I should. I watch 90 Day Fiancé. There…I said it. Whew…I feel better now.
Ok, the reason I bring this up is that I am sitting here in bed with my wife watching this collective train wreck and we are laughing at how delusional these people are. EVERYONE ONE OF THEM. And yet each of them sits there on the video call and points fingers at everyone else for being unrealistic, selfish, shallow, or downright stupid for falling for the obvious lies that are so easily seen from the outside looking in.
If you’ve never seen this show, and I don’t really recommend that you do, the basic premise is that the men and/or women above living in the US are looking to get married to someone outside the US. The catch is, hence the name…they have 90 days on a K1 visa to get married and move that person to the United States. And the insanity ensues…
The collection of people that are put together are, let’s see…what is the right phrase for this, susceptible for all kinds of problems while they are blinded by the prospect of love. It is an interesting blend of insecurities, blind spots, and unrealistic expectations, and sad to say but a really accurate cross section of Americana. There are so many people who don’t have the right approach, the right screening process, and/or the right expectations in a relationship to have success. In some cases, the failures in this area are driving the problems they are experiencing now in front of millions on TV. Ideally we learn from past mistakes, come back stronger and better equipped for the next go-round. But it doesn’t always work that way, as this show clearly demonstrates. Everything from Russian dating websites, complete culture clashes, grand assumptions and total lack of transparency pervade this group of social misfits.
The mass appeal of this, in my opinion, as that we see some of ourselves in this group. We have all been there and made some of the mistakes that we watch play out on Sunday nights during this show. It is cringe-worthy to watch this stuff play out; just like the car accident that you can’t drive by without slowing down to look at the carnage.
You may have heard the statement “It is easy to run someone else’s life” before and I can’t think of a better example than this. It is hilarious to sit and watch a woman from Las Vegas who has been scammed by a guy in Nigeria speak up and point fingers at guy who is also from Vegas that he is being scammed by a Russian woman who is on multiple dating websites. She is convinced that this couldn’t happen to her but she is so sure that it is happening to someone else. Or the 53 year old woman from York, PA (my hometown)who is getting married (maybe) to a 31 year old guy from Africa who’s family expects and demands that he has a child to carry on the family name. Um, hello….anyone else see an issue brewing here? Of course you do, but she does not. And to show how desperate she is, she went so far as to ask her daughter to carry the baby to term for them. Yikes.
If there ever was a time in our lives where we needed to look in the mirror to start to change things, it is right now. Before we start looking to point fingers and call people names, we need to clean our own house first. ALL OF US have room for improvement in our lives, most likely in several areas, and that is the place to start. If you get your own shit together first then maybe, just maybe, you have a little room to make some suggestions to someone else. This is funny coming from a guy who shares advice from on stage without knowing anything about the audience on a personal level. Yes, I see the irony…
So the old adage of “Those in glass houses should not throw stones” comes to mind in all of this. NO ONE is above reproach, doing everything exactly right all the time, and living a perfect life. Watching this group video chat with these people literally verbally attacking one another, and many times for the same issues they are in the midst of, is the perfect synopsis of the human condition. We are all trying to do our best, but are very ill-equipped to do so in most cases. How do you rise above this? Not any easy questions, and I am sure there are a myriad of answers for each individual on the planet. That is why is has to start with you looking in the mirror. Only you know what that voice in our head is saying to you all day long. Only you know what your real secrets, habits and transgressions are, so technically you are the only one who can change those things. A psychologist can assist in that process, but ultimately you have to be the one to figure out where to start, then start working on these issues. Its your only hope, and in some ways one of your main jobs as a human. Even if you don’t have kids, you are still directly influencing a lot of people throughout your life, and I believe it is incumbent upon you to improve yourself to help improve others.
Your takeaways for this post:
  • This isn’t my only weird secret indulgence…
  • Judgement of others is a hobby for some, a way of life for others. We all do it to some degree.
  • Because of the point above, we all should be better human beings than we are, but we are not. We don’t necessarily learn by judging others, we just do it to make ourselves feel better about our own messy lives.
  • To change the world, you have to start by changing yourself first.
  • This will be a life-long project, so you better get started today…
I wish you luck in your endeavors.

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