I normally don’t post about just one book, and I never post this closely together, but after reading Stacey’s Broken Heart, I feel like I have to rant a bit more about how my girl Stace is in major danger of becoming a future-abused-woman. Stacey dated Robert from book 70 to book 99 which in BSC time line is just a few months, but in calender years based off the holidays and summer vacations is over a year… anyway, aside from the chronological issues… Stacey finds out Robert is lying to her in the book. He goes out with another girl, Andi, and even kisses her while Stacey is in New York visiting her father and baby-sitting some old charges. Ok, number one, what the hell kind of thirteen year-old cheats on his girlfriend!? But, number two, Stacey exhibits some hardcore future-abused-woman symptoms. Reading this I kept shaking my head because it reminded me so much of myself… she is headed down a bad path. Firstly, when she hears he might be cheating, rather than confronting him, she just withdraws into herself. When he asks what’s wrong, she says “Nothing.” I still do this. It drives my fiance crazy. When she begins to hear and see that he’s lying she does everything in her power to make excuses for him. She tries so hard to convince herself that she’s mistaken or confused. When she finally finds out the truth she breaks down. Breaking down is fair enough. This little rant isn’t:

“What was so special about Andi? Nothing that I could see. How could he like her better than me? Why had he stopped liking me? What had I done wrong? Maybe he needed somebody who didn’t baby-sit and who didn’t go away every other weekend, someone who was there all the time.

I thought of a million things that might be the matter with me. Every insecurity I’d ever felt came zooming back. Was something wrong with my personality? My looks? Was I too thin? Was it the diabetes? Did he want a girlfriend who could eat ice cream and junk food with him?

Did he want someone who was part of his old crowd? It could be. Maybe I took him away from his friends too much. He  might want a girlfriend who would fit in better.”

She automatically jumps into assuming that her looks, her personality, even her ILLNESS are to blame. That she has faults so great that its ok for her boyfriend to cheat on her. That, somehow, if she was better this wouldn’t have happened. If there is anything I’ve learned in my bad relationships, it’s this: Men don’t sleep with other women because of something you did. They sleep with other women because they want to. When he wasn’t constantly berating me, my ex would sometimes mercifully remind me of that. He did it for sex, no other reason. In the end, it doesn’t make you feel better, but it should.

Stacey gets over it. She cries a lot (which is totally acceptable) but she moves on. Why? Because she meets another guy. I’ve been there, too. She meets a (older) boy, Ethan, in New York and he is crazy about her. After Robert leaves her, she feels “free” to spend time with Ethan. The book ends with Stacey saying:

“I was going to be okay, though. No matter what happened, I’d always have myself to rely on. As long as I liked me, I’d be fine. And that was something I hadn’t been sure of before Robert broke my heart. Now I was sure.”

A)Sometimes I forget these girls are only 13 and with melodrama like this in their lives I expect them to all end up pregnant or addicted to heroin.
B)Even when she finds out she loves herself, it’s because of something Robert did. *sigh*

The worst part of the whole situation is the letter at the end from Ann M Martin. She generally uses the letter to talk about the high points of the book (drunk driving, death of a friend, divorce, holidays, disappointment, etc.) but in this book, she mentioned that Stacey and Robert broke up and then went on to talk about how much she loves writing about New York. Why not mention how girls can be strong on their own? Why not mention how what Robert did was damaging and wrong? Why not give a nod to the fact that there are certain things girls should NOT put up with… anyway, sorry for the rant, but this book got me going.

Now for the survey at the end.

When Stacey finds out that Robert has been seeing another girl, her heart is broken. One person Several people who has have broken my heart is are every boy I ever had a crush on who didn’t like me back, every guy I’ve ever dated in some way or another. Our hearts are so fragile. Thats why we should be doubly careful who we give them to. Once I broke someone else’s heart by telling him he cussed too much and breaking up with him before P.E. He cried all the way through it. I was a sucker and took him back. (This was maybe… 4th grade?) Accoding to Stacey’s father, thirteen is a little young to have a serious relationship. I think a person should be Sixteen, or older before she/he has a serious boyfriend/girlfriend. The most “serious” boyfriend/girlfriend I’ve had so far is Quincy, since I’m marrying him, though our relationship is far less serious than my last one… in the best way possible. If I could ask anyone to be my boyfriend/girlfriend, I would ask Alan Rickman because he is SMOKING HOT.

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