‘Bridgerton’ Season 2 Is For Anyone Who Never Felt Like They Were Worthy Of Love

Anyone who has dived into Season 2 of Bridgerton has certainly commented on the slow burn of the romance between Anthony Bridgerton and Kate Sharma (and honestly, it’s worth talking about—it was hot). Whether you were absolutely obsessed with the sexual tension or wanted them to hurry up and kiss already, there are underlying themes that make the long-running lead-up to the relationship between them so satisfying and worthwhile to watch.

Kate is the eldest of the two Sharma daughters, and she takes on the responsibility of protecting her younger sister, Edwina, quite seriously. When the two girls and their mother return to the Ton in time for the season to begin, Kate makes it abundantly clear that Edwina will be the focus and will find someone to marry, not her. She wants Edwina to have it all—a true love match and someone of nobility who can provide for her. As for herself? She plans to return to India alone, with no intentions of finding a husband, to be a governess. 

When we become reacquainted with Anthony at the beginning of the second season, he has decided to fully step into his role as viscount and find a wife. His only desires? That she be kind and practical, someone to fulfill the duties of a viscountess. Love is not a factor in the equation—it is all about responsibility. When Kate overhears a conversation Anthony is having with a few other men to this effect, she immediately makes her opinion clear that he is not worthy of her sister Edwina, and goes through immense efforts to keep him at bay (and her sister from falling for him). Thus ensues a distinct rivalry between Anthony and Kate, constantly complaining of how insufferable the other is.

Yet naturally, as the season progresses, it becomes apparent that all the hate between them is a sign of something more passionate, regardless if either is willing to acknowledge it through more than intense staring and being a little too close constantly. The slow burn of their obvious affection for each other is enticing to watch, but underneath the surface of all the sexual tension and almost kissing, there are other layers to these two about how they view themselves and how they view love.

Because truthfully, if you are a person who has ever felt they aren’t worthy of love, then you likely relate to Kate and Anthony in ways you never expected.

Both Kate and Anthony struggle to accept that they deserve genuine love—their only priority is their duties and protecting their families. Anthony views love as something that only causes potential pain, due to having to watch his mother grieve over the tragic passing of his father. He tells his mother he will never be responsible for that kind of pain for someone else. It’s also fairly obvious that he always feels like he can’t fill the shoes of his father—a man who was able to experience a true love story while also being a great father who provided and cared for his family. We know that Anthony doesn’t think his life has to include a love match and that while others may be worthy of it, he doesn’t see it for himself. As for Kate, we learn as the series progresses that she has felt the weight of her family must rest solely on her shoulders. We also know that Kate has often been treated like an outsider, due to her having a different mother than Edwina, and an opinionated woman who would likely never marry. Kate likely felt that there wasn’t a man worthy of her, but also not one who would love her as she was. 

Eventually, a conversation between Lady Danbury and Kate reveals a great deal of the perspective Kate holds towards herself, as Lady Danbury calls her out on her declarations of wanting to be alone “at the age of six and twenty.” When Kate pushes back, claiming she will go back to India, become a governess, and she will be content with her life, it’s a moment that shines a light on Kate’s perspective—she does not strive for happiness or even love, she will simply settle for being content

And that’s the hard truth about feeling unworthy of love, isn’t it? You will ultimately not even strive for a wonderful life or one full of love and happiness. You will fixate on being content, because you’re certain that is the best you can hope for. 

Whether you have been actively told by people that you are too much or you’ve internalized that feeling based on struggles you’ve endured in your life, it is not an easy thing to shake. If you have others to take care of, the pressure weighs even heavier, because you love and adore them and want every beautiful thing in life to happen for them. You just can’t ever imagine it for yourself. 

You believe that it’s your responsibility to do whatever you must to take care of others, and you see no issue with it. Yet if an opportunity ever falls into your lap, you are certain it’s a ruse. You believe it’s either a cruel prank, a means to an end, or pure obligation—you’ll look to any excuse rather than the true belief that someone is in love with you.

Case in point; initially Edwina and Anthony’s courtship appears to be the reason Kate and Anthony can’t be together, yet even when the wedding is called off, the two still can’t seem to fully get it together. They don’t rush into each other’s arms immediately, because Edwina wasn’t what was keeping them apart—it was their own self-sabotaging streaks. As they continue to fall for each other, each seems to put their heart on the line, only to be dismissed by the other. After an accident involving Kate falling off a horse, Anthony is finally knocked to his senses and decides to propose, only for Kate to turn him down.

Kate has a hard time believing she is worthy of love and pure adoration for who she is. Even with Mary, her stepmother, she feels as though she needed to earn her love and owed her so much for stepping in and treating her like a daughter. Mary gently chastises her and tells her she never owed her anything, that she has loved her since the day she met her. In that same conversation, we find out the real reason for her rejecting the proposal—she is convinced Anthony is doing it out of obligation, not love. And why wouldn’t she be, after the history they’ve shared? 

The thing is, some of us know what it’s like to be Kate. We’ve been the person who tries to rationalize our feelings to protect our heart. We’ve experienced risking it all only to be rejected for someone else. We’ve felt the crushing weight of believing “I am just not good enough.” 

It’s the final scene in the garden between the two that confronts these feelings: Anthony finally gets the nerve to tell her he loves her. In the midst of his romantic declaration confessing he has loved her since they met, he says, “You don’t have to accept it, you don’t have to embrace or even allow it. Knowing you, you probably will not, but you must know. you must feel it in your heart, because I do.”

Which is one of many reasons why watching this season unfold is so intriguing and comforting—seeing two people who believe they are unworthy of love find it in the arms of each other. We long to end up in the arms of someone who completely understands our feelings and experiences, our imperfections and stubbornness, and loves us not just in spite of it, but all the more for it. 

We desire someone to see us for who we are and decide that a life with us is something they desperately want, something they cannot live without, rather than something to settle for. We hope that what we bring to the table is enough, even if we have spent our whole lives insisting that it never could be.

Seeing this type of love story play out on screen between not one, but two of the main characters struggling to accept their ability to (and worthiness of) love is so impactful, because it takes so much vulnerability to open your heart up to someone, and so often the results leave you rejected. Despite the moments that Anthony and Kate do end up hurting each other in their own determination to do what’s “best,” we ultimately are able to watch them fall deeply in love as they finally let down their guards. We are able to believe something like that can happen to us—that someone will believe we are deserving of a complete, genuine, passionate, true love, and want to give it to us.

That maybe, just maybe, we can believe we are worthy of it, too.