dreadedcandiru2 (dreadedcandiru2) wrote,

The praise-deficit perplex

Of course, there's another character defect that Elly displays that hampers her effectiveness as a parent. The same woman who makes tiny little things like Mike's instinctive and uncontrollable response to her latest ill-informed diatribe or having to actually get off her ass and go to the school bake sale with Lizzie into a huge, insane crisis has the irritating ability to encounter a real problem and completely fail to see that it exists. In the last years of the strip, this took the form of her stupidly telling April that she should do something about the clutter in the alcove she and Mike's trash were dumped into because she's too blasted oblivious to notice that being THERE for Mike and Liz in their fake, no-way and completely fictional moment of need means that April is being ordered to take it up the arse by an idiot mother, entitled older siblings and dullard father who's too busy trying to be impartial to actually be bothered knowing what's actually going on around him.

In the early years, this sort of "Crisis, what crisis?" thinking set things up so that Mike couldn't help but see Lizzie as a threat. I'm of course talking about the fact that Elly was so busy paying attention to all the cute things that Lizzie could do, she failed utterly to notice that she was making Michael feel like he wasn't loved any longer. It clearly seemed to him that no matter what good things he could do, he wasn't allowed to take pride in them or receive recognition or be praised in any way because he's not a cute little girl Elly could dress up like a little doll. Trying to explain to Elly that she might be setting herself up to endure animosity was, of course, a non-starter. If she didn't blame the problem on him for being selfish, she'd make some sort of Peter Pan comment about how he magically knew that they loved him despite their active visible antipathy to his calling attention to himself.

The end result of this is his spending his life trying to call attention to himself by any means necessary. The other end result of this is that Elly is baffled by this because she doesn't want to admit that his life neatly parallels her own in that an oblivious thick-head mother turns a younger child into a love object while blinding herself to the fact that despite her belief otherwise, the older one is convinced that her parents don't really care about her any longer but are just keeping her around so they don't look bad in front of the neighbors. This leaves an unhappy world blighted with two idiots who've bullied their way into becoming the center of attention who sullenly refuse to notice that they're the slime axis about which their families rotate.
Tags: elly patterson: universal imbecile.

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