Thursday, 21 November 2013

Genre Talk: Kweeny's Childhood Role Models

Growing up, I had to dig amongst the mass produced, white picket fence, 2.5 families to even find something I could admire, let alone come close to the reality of my situation. My family was nothing like June Cleavers. Hell, I was lucky if I could find people in my house that were related to me half the time, let alone anything resembling a parent who cared.

So my family role models tended to not be the standard. The people I wished were my family was people like the Deetz from Beetlejuice, who had a goth daughter that reminded me of myself at the time. I envied Lydia’s wardrobe, but most of all, the people in her life. Even though her parents needed Beetlejuice and the Maitland’s to teach them to care about her more, she had that. And hell, she had Beetlejuice in her life, which was the kind of exciting influence I wanted over what I did have to endure every day.

But most of all, I wanted my family to be like The Addams Family. What abused gothic child didn’t? I mean I know goth children who were never abused and wanted them as their family, because The Addams Family were great! I didn’t give a shit about Disney princesses growing up, or trying to fit into an unrealistic mold of what “family” should be. I just wanted a loving, weird family were I fit in. To be among my own kind who had my back. I wanted to grow up and find a love like Mortica’s, while at the same time, wanted to be her daughter. I wanted the whole lot of them. I’d probably fit in as well as Beetlejuice fits in with The Deetz's, but still, I think it would be better than the family I was stuck in. And The Addams Family is willing to support and love members of their family who don’t fit their ideals perfectly. Remember in the second movie when her new born son goes through that…phase?

As a child, I was not interested in princesses, because I had bigger concerns. I wanted a loving family, so when I played with dolls I tried to goth them out to look like The Addams Family and play out the ideal family I dreamt of. They were GOOD PEOPLE. They showed me that being weird is who you are, not what you wear and all that. If you are weird, you can still be a decent human being, full of compassion for others but true to yourself. You can also find others like you, a family of sorts, and keep them close. Because sometimes, people won't see that you are a decent person because they are afraid of things that are not mainstream. The loyalty the Addams have to one another proved to me people can have decent families who stick up for each other, unlike mine who’d sell you out for some dope. The Addams proved that your actions speak louder than your appearance, or any other shallow standard of personality judgement. It's a principle that has kept with me to this day.

Perhaps this is part of what has shaped my personality now. I took the good role models I found in Gothic media and made them a base for myself in life, because they felt more like my people than the ones who raised me. It’s why I don’t think of goth as a phase, because to me, it has seeped into everything I am. I experienced dark things at a young age, but also, all my positive role models came from the shadows. People like The Addams Family, and Lydia Deetz.

So romantic! 
My Disney Princess was Mortica Addams, and she taught me to be true to myself, to defend your family, to be passionate in all things, and to honor and cherish the love of your life. Her relationship with Gomez was a healthy, stable and passionate one. This is the one I wished to cultivate growing up, and I can say with pride that after many years of searching I have found my Gomez in Lord Bearington. He’s not rich, nor dresses like Gomez all the time, but he sure loves me like Gomez does.

Sometimes we are even creepy and kooky together!
And because I never gave up dreaming about it, I continue to cultivate a kind of “family” I dreamt about. I treat my friends who get close to me like family, and I respect and honor them even if I have very little to offer. They are treasures to me, as Mortica sees her family as treasures, because they accept me for who I am and even love me for my weirdness.

Sometimes, dreams do come true. You just have to know what you want and hunt it down. Did I mention I have loved wolves since I was 5 and learned to hunt from them? *smirk* 

1 comment:

  1. Couldn't be more with you on this one! :D Have always adored the Addamses and Lydia! Disney princesses? BLEH!


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