They’re crude, they’re vulgar, they pump their fists, and they hump just about anything that moves. Yep, they’re the cast members of Jersey Shore, MTV’s most offensive and tasteless reality show.
While watching two self-declared meatballs dance half-naked on a bar in the middle of the day may seem ludicrous to some, the show is pretty addictive—and internationally recognized.
While it’s not good television, it is entertaining.
If you think you’re losing brain cells by tuning in at 10p.m. every Thursday night, don’t be too discouraged: you can actually learn something from watching! By doing the opposite.
Here are 7 love lessons you can learn by watching Jersey Shore.
#1. Don’t be a human backpack
During the second season at the shore, Deena and JWoww refer to Sammi as Ronnie’s “human backpack.” Her consistent observation of her boyfriend combined with her tendency to follow him around like a lost puppy earned her this title, making her look like a paranoid girlfriend with nothing better to do than spy on her guy. Even if you’re in a relationship, it is still important to take time for yourself. And if you’re so paranoid your boyfriend/girlfriend is going to do something bad (like hook up with someone else) that you need to watch them 24/7, your relationship is probably unhealthy… and should end––or at the very least go through some major restructuring. Give your significant other (SO), and yourself, the time and space to do your own thing.
exacerbates all problems
No matter which cast member is fighting with their SO and/or hook-up, problems only get worse when booze is involved. If you’re angry with someone, the last thing you should do is drink around him or her. Even worse would be going to a crowded place where many people are drinking (i.e., a bar, a la Karma). Instead, give yourself the night off and take a chance to think about a) why you’re really angry, b) if it will mater the next day, and most importantly c) what you want to do about it.
#3. Keep Your Fights Private
Creating a spectacle of yourself and your SO is not only destructive to your relationship, it also affects those around you–negatively. If you and your guy are the “Ronnie and Sammi” of your group of friends (i.e., the couple always getting in loud arguments in public), you won’t only get a bad reputation, you’ll drive your friends away. No one wants to spend their time around two people who are constantly fighting. If you’re angry, hold off until you have a private moment to talk. This is also known as DON’T AIR YOUR DIRTY LAUNDRY IN PUBLIC.
#4. Don’t lose sight of your girlfriends
After a copious amount of drama in Miami, Sammi Sweetheart wound up with a boyfriend she couldn’t trust and not ONE girl in the house she could call her friend. Dating someone doesn’t give you the right to wave off your friends; appreciate them during both the good and bad times of a relationship. And if a friend has a bad feeling about a guy and tries to warn you about it, don’t get angry—she’s only trying to look out for you. Instead, take her opinions into account and remember: boys come and go, but true friends are forever.
#5. Sleeping with Someone on the First Date is a Deal-Breaker
A deal breaker for any future relationship, that is. How many girls do Vinny, Pauly and Mike have sex with after a hard night out at Karma? About a billion. And how many do they end up dating afterward? Zero. Think about this before you go home with a guy, even if he is internationally famous and has a six-pack you’ve been dying to get your hands on. If you’d rather see a guy the next day (and possibly the next week, too) rather than JUST the next morning, let him take home your phone number instead.
#6. Have Serious Conversations Face-to-Face
When JWoww broke up with then-boyfriend Tom over the Duck Phone during the second summer at the Shore House, he decided to get even by ransacking her house, taking some of her most prized and valuable possessions (such as her bed). When Snooki broke up with Jionni over the phone in Italy, she ended up in Vinny’s bed five minutes later. If you need to break up or end a relationship with someone—or even just take a break—do it in person. You’ll be able to get the closure you need and save yourself some post-breakup drama.
#7. Don’t say “I’m Done” unless you mean it… for real
How many times have we heard each of the seven cast members say, “I’m done” in regard to a relationship? We weren’t counting, but can verify it has happened at least once for all cast members, and at least 50 times each for Ron and Sam. Saying, “I’m done,” means you’re anything BUT finished with a certain person or issue, and it’s extremely frustrating for others around you who think you mean it. Plus, this statement is usually uttered during a time of distress, confusion, annoyance or anger—acting irrationally can make you say things you might really regret once you calm down. So instead of exasperatedly throwing in the towel and exclaiming your “finished,” try to say “I need some time to think about this, let’s revisit this in (allotted amount of time).”
No relationship is perfect. But if you can take away some pointers by watching seven drunken adults run around in a beach house, you can make watching trash reality TV a positive experience.