WHAT I LEARNED FROM THE MARVELOUS MRS. MAISEL
The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel
My husband and I have been binge watching the Amazon Prime television series The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel.
Mrs. Maisel, Midge, is an upper-middle class Jewish housewife living in a New York City apartment during the late 1950s with her husband and two kids.
Early in the series, Mr. Maisel, Joel, leaves Midge for his secretary, and Midge embarks on an unexpected career as a stand-up comic. Midge is a confident, outspoken woman who is learning what she wants and is willing to sacrifice everything to go out and get it.
When Joel leaves, Midge takes on a new attitude and starts living the life she wants and feels she deserves. I’m fascinated as I watch her become an independent woman in a time when the culture encouraged women to be housewives or secretaries. And I keep saying to myself Is that actually true? Was life really like that?
Not only do I love learning about the culture through a well-written show like this one, but to be honest, I absolutely adore Mrs. Maisel’s wardrobe! She’s always wearing something stylish, and I find myself staring at her dresses wondering where she got that outfit almost more than I pay attention to what she’s saying. (That’s actually good because she drops a lot of foul language that makes me wish there was a PG version of the series.)
I would love being friends with Midge. She's authentic. She's decisive. And, she's fun. But Midge is also human.
Midge is Human
As you can tell by now, I would love being friends with Midge. She's authentic. She's decisive. And, she's fun. But Midge is also human. There was one scene when I questioned her judgment—a moment when I found myself yelling at the television, "No, no, no, No! Don't do it! You're better than that."
I just knew Midge was about to ruin her fledgling career. I started to sweat, and my heart was beating out of my chest. I had to watch through the slits in my fingers like I watch gory scenes from war movies.
What's the Big Deal?
Just in case you want to start watching the series, I won’t spoil the episode for you, but let’s just say that Midge told someone else’s story.
Yes, to me, it is a big deal.
When I work with my clients, I always tell them to tell their stories. If they are not primary actors in the story, they probably shouldn’t be telling the story.
I only allow two exceptions: 1) When the primary character has already passed away and the Storyteller is trying to connect the generations through story and 2) When the Storyteller is trying to honor the person through a YOU-Logy intended to be read to the person before he/she passes away.
But in this case, Midge makes her colleague's bombshell secret the topic of her gig for the night.
She’s profiting off of someone else’s confidential story; she’s infringing on her colleague’s privacy.
And as she betrays her colleague's confidence, the empath in me erupted in fear, anger, shame, and disappointment.
Gossip is never a good approach in life or in your life story. “A gossip betrays a confidence, but a trustworthy person keeps a secret.” Proverbs 13:1
What did I learn from this series?
I admire people who know what they want and go out and get it.
A well-told story can draw you in and make you love a character, even a fictitious character.
I take confidentiality very seriously; gossip stresses me out.
My conscience is a welcome barometer to identify stories that could get my Storytellers (or me) into trouble.
And that I probably should have grown up in the fifties wearing a girdle or a corset and beautifully tailored dresses.
Share YOUR stories (not someone else’s stories) often and save your life story forever.
This publication is based upon personal experience, research, and education. Although the author has made every reasonable attempt to achieve complete accuracy of the content in this article, the author and Sunday Dinner Stories assume no responsibility for errors, omissions, or inaccurate information. For privacy reasons, some names may have been changed or omitted. The content is not intended to replace common sense, legal, medical, or other professional advice; it is meant to encourage, inspire, educate, and inform the reader. That means you should consult with your attorney, doctors, and other professionals if you have any concern about implementing our advice. But we hope you'll consider us your memoir professionals and will consult us for all your storytelling needs!
© 2019 Michelle Beckman, Sunday Dinner Stories, All rights reserved internationally.
Please contact us to request permission to use our article.