I have always been a strong supporter of Once Upon a Time in the past. It is one of my favorite shows, and has handled one of the touchiest subjects for me personally with a lot of grace and understanding.
A while back I posted an article about how much Emma's story meant to me, and how well they handled adoption, foster care, and the repercussions mentally of those things being a part of someone's childhood, which you can find here. All of that went out the window in the episode last night...
Zelena and the Rights of a Parent
Do not get me wrong, Zelena went about this in every possible wrong way. From her basically raping Robin Hood, to threatening to take the child away, she has plenty of screws loose, stemming from her own abandonment issues and never being able to measure up so wanting a family of her own. Excusable? No, but if you understand psychosis and mental issues, on some level you can see why in her mind it made sense. While she shouldn't have sole custody of the child, Regina should have had no say in how the co-parenting was going to work. At the end of the day, pixie dust or no, she is the girlfriend, and the issues with children and custody should stay between parents. She clearly loves her little girl, and any parent who wants to be a part of their child's life, no matter how small, should be allowed to. That's why there are such things as visitation and open adoption.
Ignoring Regina's Mental Abuse of Henry for 2 Seasons
Something that has been bugging me since Neverland and was brought up again during this episode is Regina's treatment of Henry after he was adopted. While she has stepped up as a mother slightly as of late, to have Regina say that getting Henry as a baby made her a better person is completely ignoring the entire storyline of Season 1. She was still the Evil Queen back then, trying to control all aspects and keep her happy ending. Her son was in therapy and ran away because of how he was being treated, and this was before she even knew that he had the storybook. She then went on to allow him to think he was crazy, and try to keep him from his biological mother who was only trying to help him. Yet in flashbacks of Season 3 and with her own words this season, they are making it seem like he was her happy ending. That she always treated him well. If you rewatch season one, that is definitely not the case. It took her nearly losing him for her to step up and try to be a better person.
Hook Throwing Emma's Issues in Her Face
As someone who has abandonment issues of her own, the most horrifying scene of the night came when Hook decided to throw all of her good deeds and feelings back in her face. She did everything she could to protect the one she loved, and instead he used her own issues in a hurtful attack stating:
"Now you see that's your problem, Swan. You're so afraid of losing the people you love that you push them away. That's why you'll always be an orphan. You don't need some villain swooping in to destroy your happiness, you do that quite well all on your own."
I honestly at this point don't care if it's supposedly the "darkness" talking. As someone who has those same issues and lost many friends because of this reason this crossed the line in a BIG way. As much as I love Captainswan and Hook, I have no idea how they can justify this and make it seem ok at the end of the day. Unless you deal with these issues yourself, you cannot imagine the pain of these words slicing through you, I have heard some variations of it many times in my life. To do everything you can for someone you love, to try and make things work to have it thrown in your face is a terrible heartache. To have this happen with a relationship that is my favorite was too much.
The creators have always handled the issues of abandonment and acceptance with grace, but with everything that happened last night I feel slightly betrayed. Many of the lines and scenes came across as cold and hurtful, and while they have taken a lot of good risks this season, this crossed the line for me. I will continue watching, but after last night the writers and Hook are going to have a lot of work winning back one of their biggest fans.