POST: 'Gypsy' - It was so un-motherly!

What it's about. 

A musical about an obsessive mother's quest to make her kids "stars."  As determined as she may be, she is also quite selfish to the point where it turns her kids against her. 

My experience. 

There is a difference between a mother that wants success for her children and a mother who craves success so badly that she forgets that her children are her children. Rose had two daughters, June and Louise, but Baby June was clearly the favorite. The star.

The obsessive type of character that Rose was and the way she pushed her kids to fulfill her dream - all while manipulating everyone around her, was uncomfortable to watch.

From the beginning, Rose's character was visibly controlling over her children, as well as every other person who came into contact with her. She was a professional user. Only from the first ten minutes of the show could you confuse Rose for a determined mother - and she was, but not for admirable reasons.  She wanted her children to be stars, so that she could say that she is the one that created them AND "made them." Rose just wanted credit, she wanted to be recognized by the world, even though it was her children that she was throwing on stage. She was the one who wanted to be a star. 

To see a mother act like an uncaring and pushy business manager for her children made me cringe in my seat. I simply did not want to keep on watching children blindly following their mom's orders without ever having a say in anything. The most emotionally confusing part was Rose acting as if everything was sweet, as if her kids loved being in the silly and pointless productions she pushed them to do.  Rose would push June and Louise to be in productions where they had to be - under the age of ten - beyond their years. As her daughters got older, she didn't let them age. She kept them at the constant age of ten. Rose controlled every aspect of her children's lives, even aspects that seemed impossible to control - like age. 

To see her kids, who are now in their 20s, have to act like they are in grade-school was so frustrating. They're adults who still have no sense of self nor any confidence to defy their mother.  It really felt like seeing an adult on a leash. I hated it. I so badly wanted for them to scream at her! To fight against her! For her to grow up! 

Rose may be June and Louise's birth mother, but in my book she was never motherly towards her daughters. She was their boss. I couldn't stand watching this, especially since everyone was still so nice to Rose - or maybe everyone was just scared of her?

Rose embodied the type of mother that kids end up hating. I couldn’t stand her. Everything she did was for her own benefit, but she would act as if she did it for her children. It's only once June leaves unannounced, that Rose finally paid attention to Louise. Telling her, “You’re going to be the star now Louise! More than June!” Now she focused on Louise, only because June was no longer under her control. This repulsed me, it was so un-motherly. And Louise isn’t stupid, she always knew that her mother favored June, so to now have to step into June’s shoes as a last resort has to be so hurtful. Rose felt so powerful over her children, that she felt she had the ability to transform Louise into June. And Louise lets her try, she always said yes to her mother. 

My mom is my best friend, she is the person that always reminded me to be confident and to never let anyone or anything change who I am. That I should never compare myself to anyone and that I am capable of doing anything that I want. I love my mom, and I also love myself because of my mom. So, how could Louise ever love herself if her mother didn’t even show her self-love?

 

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