United States of Tara

January 28, 2009

I watched the second and third episodes. (Comments on the first episode can be found here.) Still no sign of any child alters, however, they did show her with a therapist. So, perhaps they will get into her processing a bit?

We get a bit of a clue as to where Tara is in her healing journey when she says the alters are not her. Many multiples, in the earlier stages of healing, cannot accept that everyone together makes a whole on some level. Alters are splits off of the main person, so they are altogether, in essence, one person. The one presenting…the host…is rarely the original person. The host is most often an alter, too. The original person is usually buried deep within and is usually a child. Of course, she may simply be expressing that her alters are not the “Tara” part of the system.

I really want to watch it so that I can see what the “world” is being presented with as far as the subject of DID goes. Yet, I also find myself feeling very torn about watching it. Not only is it stirring things up that I need to look at and process, but I find some things about the show very annoying and distracting.

Personally, I think they have mixed too many issues in one show and I think the parenting really stinks. Regardless of what is going on, no one should be allowed to be disrespectful. Parents are parents for a reason…and these parents don’t seem to remember that. They allow behaviors that are clearly not appropriate…and certainly not helpful to their own children. There does not seem to be any kind of real boundary setting. It is like they cave in to the childishness. It makes the show very annoying and all the extra drama is distracting. I am not saying the children should be perfect little angels…give me a break…is ANY child? However, they don’t need to mix so much extra into the show. I think the DID can be interesting enough, if it is handled properly.

The parenting isn’t the only thing that makes the show difficult for me to watch. I am disturbed by Buck and Max’s use of porn. Porn is degrading to women and is something that an awful lot of us RA/SRA survivors had to go through. Even if watching porn has nothing to do with being with another person physically, you are with them in “heart” and “mind”. To me, that is as much adultery as going out on your spouse…which also happens to be what Yeshua/Jesus taught. I know how porn can impact a family and marriage. It is not helpful…it is ultimately destructive.

I noticed something else in the show. The sister mentions that the children might be acting out due to the trauma they are experiencing. While the sister incorrectly identifies it as schizophrenia, she does make a valid point. It can be traumatizing and unsettling to have a parent who keeps becoming different “people”. That can cause children to act out in frustration over the chaos and the powerlessness they feel. More than once in the show, both children expressed a desire for their “mom” to come back.

I really felt for Max when he looked longingly for Tara in Alice. He really missed his wife. That was a very poignant scene…and very well done, I thought.

Alice presents an intersting dilemma. She wants to take over and be out full time. Whoa! That seemed to really unnerve the poor son…as it should. Hmmm…trauma?? You bet! He does not wet the bed for several years. Mom goes off her meds and her alters are showing up again. He wets the bed. Anyone else see a possible connection here?

Sadly, it is not unusual for there to be an alter that wants to take over full time. Alice, for all her quirks, is at least somewhat benign. What can be really scary is if an alter that is not so benevolent wants to take over. This is especially troublesome for an SRA survivor who has an alter who is still connected in some way to the abusers. If that kind of alter takes over, the person ends up going back…which can be downright dangerous.

Anyway, those are my latest thoughts on United States of Tara. I will try to continue to watch. Frankly, I am not sure I can resist…and not sure I want to, even with all the disagreeable elements of the show.


  1. How have you seen the 3rd episode already??
    Secret Shadows

  2. Hi, Secret Shadows! Yes, I did watch it. I was surprised to see it there. I went to watch the second episode and the third was also there, so I watched them almost back to back.

  3. […] Keeps Me Going « United States of Tara More on United States of Tara – Buck […]

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