Posted in Blog

Dark Shadows: New Horizons

During my suspension, I’ve been spending a lot of time on the couch re-watching Mad Men.  My least favourite character has always been Betty Draper/ Francis:

Betty Draper

(Jeff York (C) 2015)

She reminds me too much of my own mother. During this season, Betty’s also gotten fat… I’m not going to lie… the bitch in me delights in this after watching her put her skinny little arse before her children for four seasons…

Betty Draper Thanksgiving Dinner

(This Thanksgiving dinner! Hahahahahaha)

… You would think that I could at least sympathise with Betty, she clearly has mental health issues, but….. *thinks*….  nah.

However, I saw her in a new light today when she said this to her second husband Henry Francis in Episode 9 “Dark Shadows” of Season 5:

You’re always thinking about other people, and then you’re angry because no one’s thinking about you.

Leo Double Take.gif

(Hold up… that was Betty Draper??!!!?!?!?!?!??!?!)

I admire Henry Francis: he took on A LOT of shit when he took on Betty. I’m not defending Don Draper as a husband. Furthermore women as a collective, during the 1960s, faced a huge amount of torture. However, despite the masculine cacophony the majority at least attempted to make life better for themselves and their children, while Betty as a mother is just a monster who very evidently takes her own unresolved childhood issues out on her children and while Don manipulated this, Henry took this on, faced it head on and helped her. Unfortunately, he probably won’t ever alter my perceptions of Betty – as I said, she reminds me too much of my own mother, however for her to finally recognise enough how much Henry does for other people, and how little he gets in return for it and also recognise his anger for that, is pretty awesome.

 

This is something that I have been dealing with, because I’m constantly thinking of others. It’s something it seems that I was born to do. From a young age I was doing it for my family and now I do it instinctively, so much so that I forget that not everybody else does it too, and if they don’t that doesn’t necessarily mean that they don’t care. However, that doesn’t invalidate my anger.

 

Betty then went on to say:

It’s so easy to blame our problems on others but really we’re in charge of ourselves.  

 

I’ve come to a massive crossroads in my life. I’ve now become too sick to work – that is very much clear, therefore I cannot look for another job. Therefore I’m going to have to claim benefits.

I’ve also decided that it’s time to find my own place. As much as I love my partner, I can’t live with him anymore because I need my own space and my independence, and the stress of living with somebody else while so ill is actually more detrimental to my health than its worth.

This doesn’t mean however, that we’re breaking up.

 

It’s incredibly scary because I’m not going to have a job, yet I’m looking for somewhere to live on my own?

Am I crazy?

Yes. Yes I am!

But it’s also the first decision I’ve been able to make in the last few months that makes me feel pretty damn good.

 

It feels bloody good to be taking charge and soon also take charge of my own happiness.

Author:

I’m Cece Alexandra and I have Epilepsy. Since being diagnosed, my life has changed significantly. After studying and teaching Humanities and Literature for all of my adult life, I was bullied and lost my job a month before qualifying to become an English Teacher. Once you fail the Teacher Training course in England, you cannot ever retrain; I then became too sick to work because of my Epilepsy. I am now currently studying an MSc in Mental Health Psychology with the University of Liverpool. My disability provokes me into raising awareness for invisible disabilities, which I also actively partake in with Epilepsy Action. Part of that awareness is to help fight against invisible disability discrimination - I believe that this behaviour is not cognitively unconscious; modern society is actively partaking in a hierarchy of disabilities and I believe that there is not enough psychological research to prove this. I am also clinically interested in Cultural Psychology - particularly Collectivist Culture, and wish to pursue this further in my academic career.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s