Not That Kind of Girl

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Not That Kind of Girl - Lena DunhamNot That Kind of Girl by Lena Dunham

I learned of Lena Dunham due to the controversy surrounding her book. Controversy is a good thing, it got me interested in her show and her book. The show "Girls" is not my kind of thing so after three episodes I stopped watching. The book, which was given to me as a gift, I have enjoyed. It has taken me five months to finish it. I would come across something and have to think on it for a very long time. This book is an interesting piece of ramblings put together. To put my thoughts together for it, I thought I would share some of the pieces that had me reflecting for a while before I could move on.

"When I'm playing a character, I am never allowed to explicitly state the takeaway message of the scenes I'm performing - after all, part of the dramatic conflict is that the person I'm portraying doesn't really know it yet. So let me do it here: I thought I was smart enough, practical enough, to separate what Joaquin said I was from what I knew I was. The way I saw it, I was fully capable of being treated with indifference that bordered on disdain while maintaining a strong sense of self-respect. I obeyed his commands, sure that I could fulfill this role while still protecting the sacred place inside of me that knew I deserved more. Different. Better. But that isn't how it works. When someone shows you how little you mean to them and you keep coming back for more, before you know it you start to mean less to yourself."

I can do related to this sense of playing a character. It's very much like my Living a Fraudulent Life post, I lived lies until I believed those lies and now is the slow healing from the damage my lies caused.

"I began to sob. Not because I didn't want her to be gay - in truth, it worked perfectly with my embarrassing image of myself as the quirkiest girl on the block, hence my recurring suggestion that my parents foster a child from a third world background. No, I was crying because I was suddenly flooded with an understanding of how little I really knew: about her pains, her secrets, the fantasies that played in her head when she lay in bed at night. Her inner life."

This paragraph is in relation to her sister and while my sister is not gay (quite the opposite actually), I can really relate. In the past 8 months I have reconnected with my sister and this is very much how I have felt. Lena Dunham just put it allot more eloquently than I ever could.

"First, she explains some basic "facts" about the mother-daughter relationship. (You are her possession, but you are also a person.") Next, she tells me that we've both behaved in perfectly understandable, if unpleasant ways. ("I get it" is a favorite phrase.) "So," she concludes. "This is actually a chance to reach the next phase of your bond if you will let it be. I know that you can come out of this stronger than before if you can tell her, 'You're my mother, and I need you, but in a different way than before. Please let us change, together.' "

And lastly, the dynamics of relearning how to have a relationship with my parents. To look at every serious conversation whether it ends good or bad, it's good to know we can come out stronger than before. Because that last line is true.

Have you read Lena Dunham's book? If so what are your thoughts?? If you haven't, is it something that would interest you and what are your thoughts on what I've shared??