“Shelby” is a Millenial living in a lame single dad’s world.

Last night, a friend of mine sent me a text message:

all these girls are on the bachelor are twenty four isn t your age?

No, friend—-it’s not. But a little digging reveals that two of the “bachelorette” contestants on this cycle of ABC’s the Bachelor, Shelby and Emily, are my age—-23. So, why are they doing this to themselves?

The Bachelor is one of the most earnest of the reality TV dating shows, with contestants often going on to actually get married in real life—-or, at the very least, carry on the stunt engagement for a few months after their legal obligation. Why, I wondered, would a woman my age already be so desperate to get married that she’d submit herself to the whims of the reality TV dating game—-especially given that, this time, the prospective husband is Jason Mesnick, a “handsome single dad” who’s got 32 years under his belt?

I haven’t seen the show, so all I know about the Bachelor‘s two 23-year-old contestants comes from their short online bios. Shelby is a Fresno”Account Executive”; Emily, a Seattle “Casino Marketing Representative.” Both are blond.  And both have now been sent home: They won’t be marrying Mr. Mesnick, or awkwardly turning down his engagement, anytime soon. But why did they put themselves in that position to begin with?

a) They know they’re a long-shot to win. That 32-year-old dad’s not going to subject his kid to a 23-year-old step-mom—-not in front of a live television audience, at least. It just looks bad. Meanwhile, the 23-year-old ladies cash in on their 15 minutes of fame when the limo door shuts for the last time.

b) They’re young. They don’t have a broken engagement in their past, yet. Might as well get it over with.

c) They’ve got a lot less riding on this than the show’s 30-somethings. What the hell are they doing on this show?

d) Beats being a Casino Marketing Representative.

e) They are attractive enough to get on the show, unlike pathetic 23-year-old bloggers.