Living Room: A Novel
Written by Rachel Sherman; Presentation by Erin Hoelscher
The Grandmother: Headie
After learning Headie's life, you understand and respect her as a woman, wife, and mother. She did what men expected her to and always loved her son. She reached out to her family members and shared her life with them.
The Mother: Livia
Through Livia we see what it's like to be in marriage that you feel obligated to stay in and the emotional toll that takes on one's confidence and ambition. Shortly into her marriage with Jeffery she realizes that she can no longer do it and feels like giving up. However, Jefferey convinces her to stay and be a mother to his child. Despite her reluctance to do so, she stays and gives birth to a daughter for him - a daughter she did not fully love. She was pushed into being a mother for a husband that she did not want to stay with. She tried to love her as much as she should, but it just ended up in failure and her husband yelling at her to "grow up!"
Because of this trap that she is in, she has an eating disorder where she overeats all day long. She eats alone in her room, in the car, etc. so she is not caught and is not embarrassed. She is ashamed of her inability to control this part of her life, but she never takes initative to change this quality about her.
She meets a woman named Simone who she later finds out is a lesbian and has been living with her partner for eleven years. Throughout the novel Livia mentally asks questions about the lesbian relationship: how it started, what they do in their free time, if either of them found her attractive, etc. The reader gets a good understanding of how lost and out of touch Livia is with herself and who she is.
The Daughter: Abby
Jenna starts out gently by teaching Abby how to pluck her eyebrows, and then escalates it into convincing her to get drunk on her front lawn with some boys from her high school. It seems that soon after this Abby is always wanting to smoke a cigarette. She constantly skips class to go smoke and runs in to Jenna and the boys outside of school all the time. Soon after, Jenna works her seductive quality on another man so he will buy her and Abby alcohol. Abby and Jenna decide to get drunk before a pep-rally at their school, but both end up getting alcohol poisoning and Abby has to get her stomach pumped.
Abby has to learn and understand the level of severity of her mistake, but it takes her some time. She realizes Jenna is not her true friend and that everyone has their fault and anything and everything can go wrong at a given moment. She just wanted to be liked by the cute boys in school, but put her morals aside to please others.