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The Bachelor

5 Reasons Why Brad and Emily Will Live Happily Ever After (We Hope!)

He did it! Brad Womack actually proposed to a woman on The Bachelor. And he picked America's Sweetheart, Emily "Southern Barbie" Maynard. They already broke up once, and they have a rough road ahead of them — from Bachelor fallout to constant tabloid attention — but we think they could defy the franchise odds and make it. Here's why.

1. She makes him want to be a better man
Brad entered Season 15 as a recovering commitment-phobe. He apologized profusely for not dating DeAnna Pappas for a while after Season 11, and he even brought his therapist along for the first few weeks of his second televised quest for love. We've heard over and over that he's a "changed man," but the real reason he's different is that ABC found him the right woman this time around. Like we said before the season started, all it takes is one. Not only did Brad fall for Emily early on, she makes him want to be a better person. That's great motivation to keep a relationship strong, however challenging. He's going to need that motivation.

2. He has a family now
Brad is not just getting Emily — he's getting little Ricki. That's a situation no one enters into lightly. It’s not like, say, Jake and Vienna, who could have an ugly public split and then just start dating new people with no real fallout. Brad and Emily now have Ricki to put first, and that's yet more motivation to work through their problems with maturity and perspective.

3. They're not going to live in L.A.
Brad made it clear early on that Austin, Texas, was getting the final rose. He said before the season even started that he wants to marry his lady and then fade into the Texas woodwork. He doesn’t have further acting or TV ambitions, so they shouldn't have as much trouble with paparazzi. As long as they can get past the current media blitz — with all kinds of skeletons flying out of the closets — and the fact that Brad said the same romantic things to every other woman on the show, they should have smooth sailing later on. However, this depends on Emily either moving to Austin or both of them compromising on where to live. The long-distance thing will not work. Their biggest hurdle is finding a spot to live so they can figure out the logistics of where Ricki will go to school, etc.

4. They seem to want the same things… we think
Some Bachelor couples have fallen apart in the past because they spent too much time apart — not just during the shooting of The Bachelor, but afterwards. Away from fantasy dates and cameras, they realized they didn't have that much in common. Brad and Emily both want a stable, happy family. They are going to live together, with Ricki. (We think.) They can set down roots and make a normal life for themselves. (We hope.) As Emily said in the "After the Final Rose" special, they just need to see how they work in the "real world." Real world time starts now.

5. They seem to be genuinely in love!
Both Emily and Brad have been in love before. Both have been through relationship drama — Emily losing the first love of her life after a plane crash and Brad dealing with the fallout of Bachelor 11 as well as his on-and-off relationship with Laurel Kagay. Not new to the ups and downs of love, they are both cautious and unwilling to settle for second best. Emily tends to pull back when she's afraid of getting hurt, and Brad does the same.

Brad always said he would walk away alone again if he didn't find The One. The fact that he didn't do that says a lot, and the fact that he actually proposed says even more. Finally, the fact that she accepted says the most. She knows that by saying "yes" she's saying yes to Brad as a husband and also a stepfather to Ricki. It's unlikely she would do that if she didn't believe she'd found The One. It's not a decision any mom would make on a whim for the sake of good TV.

03.15.2011 / 10:20 AM EDT by Gina Carbone
Related: The Bachelor, Character Relationships, Emily Maynard, Brad Womack

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