Corrie Street 13 Nov 2016

Explaining Why

michelle-in-back-roomPoor Michelle! Not a thought that often crosses my mind, but it did on Wednesday. Michelle had to explain to Amy why her tablet was open on an abortion clinic website.

Against Michelle’s wishes, Amy knows Michelle is pregnant. But Amy doesn’t know that the baby might have a congenital disease. Telling her that would introduce the topic that Amy too might have it. They were waiting for the tests results so they would know better what exactly they were dealing with. Or avoiding the discussion?

For Michelle to even contemplate an abortion must be extremely amy-enters-back-roomdifficult. She wants this baby, and she knows it’s pretty much her last chance to have another child. But she is afraid, with good reason. So exploring options is a reasonable thing to do. It also must be very, very hard. What she doesn’t need is to have to justify herself to anybody.

michelle-pleads-with-amyAnd Amy is maybe the most judgemental critic Michelle might ever meet. She seems to have inherited the harshness of her mother and great-grandmother Blanche. She also shares their belief that she should say exactly what she thinks, regardless of the hurt or consequences that may cause.

But Amy is also a child, and cannot therefore fully understand the ramifications of Michelle’s dilemma. All she knows is that she’s going to have a baby brother or sister. She cannot comprehend that there amy-confronts-michelle about considering abortionmay be problems further along that must be considered, no matter how difficult that is to do.

Amy’s mind is, simultaneously, one of a child, a scheming manipulator and a nasty old biddy who wants to mind everybody else’s business. That’s a bad combination for complex explanations, especially one like the sorrowful process of abortion consideration.

We knew, of course, as soon as we saw the site Michelle was looking at that Amy was somehow going to find it. But it annoyed me that the writers made it so easy. When she opened the tablet, I thought she would go through its history and come across the website that amy-runs-from-roomway. She’s nosy enough to do that.

After the business with Michelle flipping out about the phone call that Amy overheard, Amy’s antennae for suspicious behaviour must be up and at full alert. You’d think therefore that Michelle’s cautionary sense would be up too. So leaving that page up on the screen? I don’t think so.

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