Sunday, July 18, 2010

Remember Me Discussion Group

I know I have been very inconsistent in posting these questions and for that I am sorry. Going forward, I'll post a new question every other day. I promise. :)

Let's talk about Diane for a couple of days. First, let's talk about her relationship with her children.

How does Tyler feel about his mother? How about Caroline? Did Diane's grief over Michael's death hurt her relationship with her other children?


jessegirl said...

From what we see on screen, Tyler avoids his mother. He seeks Charles out, to spar with him. He spends time with Aiden, and of course, Caroline, but every one of the few times his mother tries to interact with him, he pulls away. The screencap here is one instance. She kisses his cheek while pulling him towards her, in gratitude that he will intercede and get Charles to the art show, but Tyler barely allows this touch, and calls Aiden's name to get away from her.
At the sweets shop too, when she tries to keep the peace and bangs the table, neither male listens. Tyler interacts in a hostile way towards Charles, ignores Les, avoids his Mom again, and focuses on Caroline. He doesn't even say goodbye to his Mom, only to Caroline.
At the grave at the beginning, Diane straightens his collar, and pulls him towards her again, but, after a cursory greeting, Tyler now uses a proper greeting with Les to get away from her. There are no scenes with just the two of them, as there are with every other family member/friend (again, besides Les).

Why? Well, I think Diane is so distraught and broken about Michael that she has turned clingy and needy and uses Tyler to fight her battles with Charles for her. And Tyler knows he cannot be what she wants him to be. He knows he's not really up to winning battles with Charles--he does try, because he has his own issues with him--and, I'm sure resents being put in the knight-in-shining-armour position. Tyler feels he cannot live up to his mother's expectations but because she's so broken it would be callous to deny her.

This is the only part of the film I found flaws with. Because Tyler was trying so hard with Charles, Ally, and Caroline--each in a different way--it seems niggardly of him not to return some of his mother's physical affection. Cruel, even. She is, I think, terrified of losing him to, and wants to hang onto him, but there is no indication that she wants him to be a stand-in for Michael. She wants Tyler as himself, but needs him close. Furthermore, I think that if Tyler DID return the hugs, or even initiate a cheek kiss, hand on shoulder, whatever, I think that in itself would help Diane recover and make her less clingy. She is unsure of her place in his life.

I think when Tyler distances himself from her it breaks her heart. I also think she's stronger than anyone gives her credit for, but that's just my intuition because she isn't on screen enough to illustrate this.

LTavares2010 said...

Tyler seems to me to feel always uncomfortable with his mother. He loves her but there is something that seems to bother him, he is never relaxed, it is just the opposite when he is with Caroline. I think Tyler doesn`t blame his mother but he gets upset in front of Diane's passivity when they are with Charles. She never appears criticizing his behaviour related to their children, especially in relation to Caroline. She may have her reasons, she may understand Charles better than anyone else and accepts his way of being but for Tyler, who certainly knew Charles very different in the past, it is difficult to accept the way he treats Caroline.
This whole family has so many feelings hidden in their hearts: guilt, anger, sadness and other things, perhaps even problems that were coming before the tragedy with Michael. I don`t think they can handle with them all by themselves without external help. They need to put out everything they are feeling. It is evident to me just looking to Diane that she tries to live a normal life but she seems to be carrying a big weight alone and she needs sharing it with Charles.
I just cannot imagine what happened to Diane, to Caroline and to Charles, after loosing Tyler too.

WhyIstheRumAlwaysGone said...

Tyler always seems to evade her, physically and pyshcologically. She tries to kiss him, to fondle him and he just slips away (cemetery scene) or looks slightly exasperated (birthday scene). Yet he certainly loves her, and you never see him getting angry at her like he does with his father. I think that Tyler knows perfectly that his mother is so fragile and deeply wounded by Michael's death that he can't and musn't turn his own anger against her. So he lashes at his father instead, because Charles is able to retaliate, or at anything else or anyone else he finds at hand when he needs to release his anger.
We don't know enough about Diane and do not see her enough on screen so we can only surmise the back story. But you can imagine Charles and her perhaps divorced after Michael died, because their couple could not resist the terrible event. This is not uncommon. I think I don't see her as needy and as clingy as you do @jessegirl, I see her as wanting to grab Tyler's attention and affection, but not in an intrusive way, she give up if she sees he's not in the mood. However shes does need the love of this only remaining son and it's a hard place for Tyler to be in. Maybe that's why he evades her all the time, he feels the void in her heart, he feels her pain and feels inadequate to mend it, simply because it cannot be mended. But you can't help feeling that he's not doing enough for her, that he should be more caring and tender and not so distant. It breaks my heart to see Diane, every time, and how she tries to interact with her son.

Jen said...

Diane has obviously gone on with her life with Les and includes Tyler in all the acitivites they have. He obviously doesn't mind being with her but is not overly affectionate with her and I think he knows she is fragile and is afraid to set her off which many people are when dealing with death. I think Diane being a social worker has learned how to keep calm when Tyler and Charles confront each other. I think she sees her son's anger and of course Charles but she won't interfere in it as she knows this is between her son and his Father. Tyler knows his mother loves him but he also knows he isn't Michael and I am sure is aware his Mother and Michael had a special bond that he can't or won't try to impose on. Tyler loves his Mother very much he is very respectful to Les and feels his Mom is happy with him. He adores Caroline and caters to her, doing all kinds of things for her from picking her up at school and taking her where she has to be and buying her gifts and telling her about Michael so he isn't forgotten -it’s obvious that he is in contact with his mother to get her schedule. He also was very comfortable in her home and at the Beach house to the point he brought Aiden and Ally.

I think Caroline is sad for her Mother and loves her very much,She knows her Mother loves her but doesn't think her Father loves her.

I think Diane is a woman who has lost her son and is in constant heartbreak over the fact he killed himself. I think she has handled this as well as can be expected wanting the best for her remaining children and trying to give them a normal semblance of how life was before he died. I think she has carried on the best she can due to Michael's suicide.

BellaMarie247 said...

A 22 yr old man is sometimes hard to hug. I raised my nephew from the time he was a year old, and when he grew up I missed the hugs and kisses and the comfortable physicality we had when he was little. Not sure if it's embarrassing for them, or just a show of new maturity: Hey Mom, I'm not a little kid anymore, stop that!

In the case of Tyler and his mother, there is obviously a lot more going on there. She is reaching out to him almost every time they are together, and he denies her even the simplest forms of physical affection... a hug, a kiss on the cheek or simply allowing her to touch him.
Tyler probably thinks she's trying to replace Michael with him and can't allow it. He's probably also upset with her because she does not defend Caroline like he thinks she should.
And, there's Les. Mom has moved on and remarried and seems not to need so much attention from him now.
Men can be complicated from a woman's point of view, but in reality they are rather simple in their needs. For whatever reasons, Tyler thinks he does not need his Mom's affectionate overtures. It's such a sad thing to see. I wish he had given her a big hug, and said I love You, just once before it was too late.
Good life lesson.....

PS: Now that my nephew is 27, I get many more hugs. Maybe they grow out of it. Anyways, I'm happy about that.

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