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Thursday, September 26, 2013

Replacements: Experience in Unhealthy Relationships

            Most adults have experienced a draining or unhealthy relationship to some degree, so I am not alone in my thoughts. I have found that you don’t realize what was wrong until you find something that is really ‘right’.
As I begin to read the story Replacements by Lisa Tuttle, I am initially drawn to the negative qualities that exist in Stuart and Jenny’s relationship. In my opinion, it seemed to be deteriorating from the start with Stuart’s jealousy. He explains, “yet he was aware, although he never spoke of it, that something about her success made him uneasy…That was why he picked at her, and second-guessed her decisions when she was behind the wheel and he was in the passenger seat” (Tuttle, 462).  I have experienced a similar situation in a former relationship. In this relationship, I felt as if happiness was a constant struggle and that I was frequently challenged when I was in positions of superiority. For example, any excess of attention or rewards I would receive, this person would become insanely jealous and insecure. Insecure in that they were not the one receiving the accolades as well as in the future of the relationship. In my opinion, Stuart and Jenny’s marriage was already headed down a dark path of no return.
A confident man should not be insecure of his woman’s achievements, but rather radiantly proud. A woman can sense when he is not, and that takes a toll on her emotionally after some time. I believe that Jenny’s capacity for these insecurities and jealousy began to run out and when she found something else to fulfill her time with, she welcomed it with open arms. Similarly in my unpleasant relationship, I reached for any hobby possible to fulfill my unhappiness. Often, this lead to unhealthy habits, which I believe is represented by Jenny’s obsession with this strange animal.
The Holder’s relationship was headed in the wrong direction the moment Stuart began ‘sucking’ the vitality out of his wife’s life and success.  As Martin Luther King Jr. stated, “Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that.” Jenny clung onto the light of this creature and all the happiness that it brought her to drive out the deteriorating and emotionally straining relationship Stuart maintained. 

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