things that should be allowed to be used in essays:
- i shit you not
- you feel me
- no but get this
- i’m just sayin
- let me explain to you a thing
- and yeah
I read a post once that said that Carol wouldn’t be good for Daryl because she quietly understands him but doesn’t “push him.” I know a lot of focus on the Caryl dynamic is that they were both abused and I think that it should be. Prolonged physical and emotional abuse effects a person long after the abuse ends (if it ever does) and it plays a huge role in how they interact with other group members.
I find it disturbing that many younger female audiences associate romance with conflict. Every relationship will have its moments, but there is a difference between healthy conflict-resolution and this romanticized notion of fighting somehow translating to sexual tension or “true love.” It’s problematic, and a good example of how characters like Edward Cullen or Christian Grey can be seen as the romantic ideal, rather than a red flag for abuse and unhealthy relationships.
"Pushing someone" is not necessarily helping someone; the very phrase suggests that you are forcing someone into an emotional state or situation that they would not personally choose for themselves because you believe it is for their own good. People can benefit from encouragement when it comes time to step outside of their comfort zones, but they need to be able to move at a pace that is right for them, not you.
On a purely psychological level it is never healthy for victims of abuse to enter into relationships where they lose their autonomy or have it compromised. Just as we should all know never to “push” someone who has been a victim of sexual assault into a sexual relationship they are not ready for, you shouldn’t push an abuse victim either. Daryl has likely spent most of his life being “pushed” by either Merle or his father. What Carol understands is that he does not need to be forced into anything by another person; he needs to be supported, encouraged, and gradually eased into accepting the changes and developments in his life and character.
I’ve seen this trend in fan-fiction where fan-girls of Daryl think he needs to be paired up with an OC that is a “spit-fire” that yells, argues, and fights him into submission to “make him a better man.” Daryl is already a good man, and through the seasons we have seen him continue to grow and transform WITHOUT the “guidance” of a Mary Sue-esque fantasy of a female character who is somehow perfect for Daryl because she takes it upon herself to “push” him, “fix” him, or otherwise force her influence onto him because he is apparently incapable of a natural or organic development. The entire notion that Daryl needs a woman to push him is both insulting to his character and ignorant of how victims of abuse should be treated.