Chicagoan Ed Swiderski of “Bachelor Pad” on Finding the One

Are you a fan of “The Bachelorette” or “Bachelor Pad”?

Anyone who caught Chicagoan Ed Swiderski on this season’s “Bachelor Pad 3″ might have gotten the impression that the bachelor who won Jillian Harris’ heart, back in season 5 of “The Bachlorette,” doesn’t take things very seriously. But the co-founder of Chicago-based technical consulting firm Kambio Group, and recent author of “Pinterest for Business,” may have his priorities in better order than most reality TV stars.

He recently shared some of his thoughts on those priorities, celebrity life, and of course, love.

What drew you to want to be on “The Bachelorette” back in 2009?

A lot of people plan to become superstars or catapult an acting or modeling career through these shows, and then there are guys like me. I was a guy from the Midwest who thought it might be an interesting life experience. I was on a lunch break from my job at Microsoft and was approached by a guy with a clipboard and a camera who was doing casting. Frankly, I didn’t really do anything they asked me to do, but they just kept calling.

Is “reality love” real love?

I really was in love with Jillian, and even if we’d met in a supermarket, our relationship would have lasted the same amount of time. The celebrity and the microscope of the media didn’t break us up, it’s just as we got to know each other, there were differences that couldn’t be reconciled. But, the scrutiny of being in the public eye made it harder to fix the things that needed to be worked out. We got just a taste of what celebrities experience on a daily basis. Sadly, people want to see scandal and divorce and break-ups, that’s what they want to talk about, and it does make it hard to work on a relationship.

How do you know when you’ve found “the one” and or when it’s time to be done?

The truth is, four years ago on “The Bachelorette” it was probably a little premature for me to consider settling down, but at this point in my life, if after the first couple of months I can’t picture being married and having a family with someone, I usually part ways. Really, if I can’t picture being in another country with someone and going through situations that are more difficult than normal, it tells me something.

Do you think it’s possible that there is more than just one person out there who could be “the one”?

I do. I think there is not one perfect person, but it’s a matter of having a reciprocal relationship where you are going to be fair with each other. Relationships are super hard. Once someone accepts you for all of your imperfections and you accept theirs, that is a perfect relationship.

Would you consider further TV opportunities? Like, what if you got a call from “Dancing With The Stars”?  

(Laughs) At this point, I think I’m retiring from reality TV. My career is the most important thing in my life, and I had to put it on hold twice already.