Downton Abbey: Should Women Say What They Think?

By

Downton Abbey: Should Women Say What They Think?
This week's episode focuses on the timeless question of whether women should speak their minds

This week's episode of Downton Abbey focuses on a timeless question: Should women say what they think? 

The year is 1920, and the aspiring assistant chef Daisy wants to move up in the kitchen, and in her life.  She is in awe of Miss Reid, the American maid who spent last week's season opener flirting shamelessly with Alfred and joyfully exclaiming her romantic desire.  While preparing the extravagant edibles for Lady Edith's upcoming wedding, Daisy consults with Alfred:

"I couldn't get over how outspoken she was. But you liked that didn't you?  Maybe I should be more outspoken and say what I really think."

As Daisy seeks to sort out her view on this revolutionary idea of women speaking their mind, we watch poor Lady Edith dote on her fiancee, Sir Anthony Strallan, with excessive adoration exclaiming:

"I don't love you IN SPITE of your need to be looked after, I love you BECAUSE of it; I want you to be my life's work!"

Her bottomless expression of affection gets her nowhere, and poor Edith is jilted at the alter. 

Meanwhile, Lady Mary boldly tells her adoring Matthew:

"If you try to find one more excuse not to accept the money, I shall have to beat you about the head!"

Mary speaks her mind -- with humor and love -- and gets exactly what she wants.

The most heartwarming romance of the episode takes place between Mr. Carson and Mrs. Hughes who absolutely refuse to say anything about what they think or how they feel.  Rejecting any form of direct communication, these lovebirds independently confide in the well intended cook, Mrs. Patmore, who seems stressed to be trapped with the knowledge of their unspoken, unacknowledged affections.  We watch the adorable Mr. Carson singing joyfully of his beloved in a corner, while Mrs. Hughes watches longingly (in secret) and we can only hope that someone will speak up soon!

As the episode closes, Daisy cannot seem to find a clear answer to her question and turns her colleague, Anna, for advice:

"Do you think its right that women should say what they think and speak out about romance and everything?"

Anna, shockingly, gives a reply that could have been lifted from the lines of a modern day advice column, or from the 1995 bestselling self-help classic, The Rules!

"Well, things are changing for us and the vote won't be long now, so I suppose they must get used to us speaking our minds.  But with most of the men I've ever met, if you started to court them they'd be so terrified they'd run a mile!"

Ironically, the one time Daisy speaks up, she barges into a conversation, uninvited, and tells Lady Mary of a letter she mailed for Lavinia just before her death.  Daisy's honesty singlehandedly saves Downton Abbey and her job, though Daisy learns nothing of the tremendous ramifications of her outspoken words.

Obviously, women can and must say what they think and how they feel.  The trick is to say things kindly, use humor when appropriate, and respect yourself in the process!

 

Learn more at www.elisabethlamotte.com and follow @elisjoy

This article was originally published at . Reprinted with permission from the author.
Article contributed by
Advanced Member

Elisabeth LaMotte

Counselor/Therapist

Social worker, psychotherapist, blogger and author of "Overcoming Your Parents' Divorce"

Location: Washington, DC
Credentials: LICSW, MFT, MSW
Specialties: Communication Problems, Dating/Being Single Support, Divorce/Divorce Prevention
Other Articles/News by Elisabeth LaMotte:

Is Your Teen Or Tween Struggling Because They Feel Different?

By

If you have tween or teen daughters, it is highly likely that you have already heard an earful about John Green's bestselling novel and subsequently recently released film, The Fault in our Stars.  Even if you do not have teens or tweens, you would have to be living under a rock to have missed the hype about Hazel Grace, Augustus Waters, and their ... Read more

5 Things Movies Can Teach You About Breakups

By

A painful breakup is one of the most common reasons people seek therapy. Breakups are almost never easy and almost never mutual. Most people going through a breakup say they wish they could reverse their situation back into a relationship. However, as much as losing a relationship can hurt, breakups also carry the opportunity for important emotional ... Read more

Are You Ready to Unplug Your Love Life?

By

As a therapist working with adults in their twenties, thirties and forties, many of whom are single, I frequently discuss the way that technology affects dating and relationships with my clients.  I often wonder what the future will look like, and how much farther the internet revolution will infiltrate and impact the human experience of ... Read more

See More

GET MORE ARTICLES LIKE THIS IN YOUR INBOX!

Sign up for our daily email and get the stories everyone is talking about.

Ask The Experts

Have a dating or relationship question?
Visit Ask YourTango and let our experts and community answer.

FROM AROUND THE WEB