Friday, January 27, 2012

Deconstructing Tara: Pilot

I like the way they open the episode with Tara doing a video journal entry. It gives the viewer a chance to meet the title character and journaling of any kind is helpful for someone living with DID. It helps fill in the holes and gives a place to deal with tough emotions, like the discovery of your 15 year old daughter's sexual activity.

Oy... Krys was the same age as Kate when I found out about the sweaty, skanky, teenage sex occurring... under our own roof, no less. I was mortified, angry and a little hurt that Krys hadn't trusted me enough to discuss it. We only found out when I hacked her myspace after admitting her the hospital for self-injury, depression and drug use.

We all got through that time, more or less better off and a fraction wiser... but like Tara, my initial reaction was to want to "SEW HER UP!" Seeing Tara's reaction validated for me that however crazy things were in our family, some things were "normal", like a mother's natural reaction to a child becoming *gasp* sexually active.

Tara's first switch (in the show, they call it transitioning)... First off, it is not always that obvious. Alters don't always rush off to change clothes either. For the sake of viewers, most of whom were probably getting their first look at realistic DID, those visual clues were important for following the changes. It also brings up some questions...

When I was first coming to terms with the diagnosis, I had no clue what I looked like when I switched. The idea terrified me. For a good year or so, if I felt my emotions getting beyond what I could bear or if I had a sense a switch was coming, I would try to get alone so no one could see. Over time and with lots of encouragement from those who had seen it, I learned to relax. I didn't always see a switch coming and it was a little, um, controlling on my part to attempt to control the when and where.

Unlike Tara, the Crew didn't all have their own wardrobe. We did buy things specifically for them at times... but what ended up happening was I gradually changed my wardrobe to consist almost entirely of denim and knit tees and polos. It was less expensive to only own what most everyone was comfortable in. It also put an end to my tendency to stand, dazed, in my closet for half an hour or more a day.

Man, less than 10 minutes into Ep. 1 and this is threatening to become a novel. Most of my writing these days is done on my phone which is limiting and slow. For the sake of publishing regular entries, I'll stop this one here and allow time to work on the rest of the entry. To be continued...