E – Easy A (and parents done right)

My apologies for getting this up really late. I’ll be working on updating twice a day until I catch up with the challenge.

This is the letter E for the Blogging from A-Z April Challenge.

Once again, spoilers. I’m seeing a pattern here.

Easy A is one of those movies that is brilliantly done, but it points out a major flaw in our culture, particularly high school culture. And this cultural flaw is a doozey, especially when we’re supposed to be more equal opportunity than ever. The flaw is this: a man gets positive recognition from sexual activity, and a woman gets negative. This is a double-standard. Sex is supposed to be with two people, usually heterosexual (but let’s not rule out other possibilities). Between these two people, they do the same thing; so why does one person get positive reinforcement and the other negative? I don’t think gender should matter. It makes no sense.

Anyway, in lieu of this blatant cultural flaw, I’m here to rave about Olive’s never-failing support team: her parents.

pictured here with little brother

These guys are fantastic. They’re open and taught their daughter to be independent and they support her in everything she does whether Olive tells them about it or not. In the scene where Olive is sewing red As onto a slutty wardrobe, her father interrupts her. He recognizes something is wrong although she won’t say what it is, and he tells her to “knock ’em dead.” He doesn’t pry into her secrets, but he shows his support nonetheless.

And then there’s Olive’s mother. She is just as supportive and available to Olive as her father. My favorite part with her is when Olive is confiding in her everything that’s happened since the beginning of the movie. Although the advice Olive’s mother gives is vague in my opinion, it’s enough to tell Olive that everything will be alright and she will get through this. Then they make the whole thing a laughing matter and you start to feel better about the situation.

I think teen literature needs more parents like these guys. They’re not oblivious to their child’s emotions, they’re aware Olive needs to know someone is behind her, and they don’t pry into anything. In addition, they’re supportive of Olive in everything. Both parents tell Olive that they support her “boyfriend” if he’s gay, which also says they support progressive ideas. Best of all is their sense of humor. It’s found everywhere, and it makes me smile whenever I think about them.

~

Discussion Question: What’s the best parent-child relationship you’ve seen in a work of literature?

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