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Being a Transitional Character: Breaking the Cycle

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Stephanie Fierro

on 10 December 2013

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Transcript of Being a Transitional Character: Breaking the Cycle

Being a Transitional Character: Breaking the Cycle
Introduction: Transitional Character Overview
The Blind Side: Michael Oher as a Transitional Character
So Why is Being A Transitional Character Important?
It gives the person empowerment!
It lets the person know that they don't have to be a victim to their negative family patterns.
How Can You Be a Transitional Character?
You have to determine what the negative patterns actually are and how they are being passed down.
Become aware of the changes that need to be made.
Have the desire!
Devise specific strategies and action plans (similar to being deliberate).
Receive help and learn from others.
Learn from "backsliding" or relapses
Be persistent
Learn to Forgive
Keeping Emotional Distance
Help others by making them aware of the "warning signs".
How Can being a Transitional Character Affect Your Family Over Time?
You need to warn your future family of the possible negative patterns or tendencies that are present in your family. Let your kids know what "runs in their blood" so that they can avoid the triggers of the specific unhealthy transmission. That's how you can continue to have your family be free from the poisonous "traditions"
The Blindside: What is it About?
The Blindside conveys the inspirational story of Michael Oher (an NFL offensive lineman for the Baltimore Ravens). The film follows Michael as he rises above his impoverished upbringing, where he was raised around his parents' substance and alcohol abuse and abandonment. Through the help of Leigh Tuohy and her family, who later adopts Michael and provides him with a life that he could never have even dreamed of having, he is able to discover his academic potential and stabilize his superior athletic ability. Because of this he is able to graduate from high school (when beforehand with his lack of motivation and support seemed impossible), become one of the most coveted prospects of college football and choosing to attend the University of Mississippi, and then ultimately becoming the first round pick for the Baltimore Ravens.
Clip #1:"The Mother Scene"
This clip is of Leigh Tuohy going to see Michael's birth mother at her run-down apartment building in order to find further information about Oher in order to adopt him. We learn a bit more of his family's dark past and Michael's tendency to "flee-the-scene" to find his mother.
Clip #2: "The Drug Dealer Scene"
During this scene we see Michael run into past acquaintances (specifically his mother's drug dealer) when searching for his birth mother. He is invited into a party where he is given a drink and surrounded by drugs. We worry that he has fallen back "into the cycle"...until he realizes that this is no longer part of who he is and needs to get out of there.
Clip #3:"College Drop-Off Scene"
This is one of the closing scenes of the film where we see the Tuohys dropping off Michael at Ole Miss's campus. We also hear Leigh reflect on how Michael could have easily been stuck into the world that he was brought up in if he hadn't been so determined to reach his potential.
Analysis of Clip #1
Analysis of Clip #2
Analysis of Clip #3
We chose to show this clip because it presents two important concepts that were discussed earlier in our presentation, the first is that when a transitional character plans out how they will succeed in creating a better future, reaching that goal will be even more possible...the the next being the fact that just because someone comes from a negative and dark past does not mean that they are destined to remain there or pass it on to their future family. Michael was able to push past his upbringings, and be the transitional character of his lineage, he did not have be a prisoner to his family's negative patterns.
Analysis of Clips
This scene reveals the negative patterns and processes that have occurred in Michael's family, specifically the "health problems"--struggle with drug addiction-- that his mother is battling, his father leaving and not being part of his child's life, and Michael's similar tendency to be a "runaway" when staying in foster homes.
During this scene, we see Michael "backtracking" or relapsing as we discussed earlier. We see him falling back into his old ways by him once again trying to find his mother, then accepting the invitation to come into the party, and beginning to sip his drink.
The End :)
By Madison Price, Matthew Hilbert, and Stephanie Fierro
What is a Transitional Character?
According to Roberta Magarell and Dean Barley, "People who overcome negative family influences can be called "transitional persons," [transitional character in our case] meaning that they make positive transitions in their own lives and in their family lines" (17).
Our definition of a transitional character is someone who is determined to not let their future family suffer any of the consequences of the negative generational patterns that have plagued their own lives and those family members before them.
These negative generational patterns (intergenerational transmission) can be seen as some kind of sickness/illness that is being spread from one person to another, and then that person infects someone else and so on...
BUT to avoid having these sicknesses being spread (negative generational patterns) to us and to others whom we come into contact with (being a transitional character), we need to take specific actions to prevent being infected. We take medications and go to the doctor if we see signs of the disease to "nip it in the butt", we get our immunizations and perhaps take our airborne to hopefully avoid having the sickness affect us at all, or you avoid the person(s) who we know is spreading it.
"The transmission of negative family patterns from one generation to the next does not always occur. Not everyone who has been abused becomes an abusive parent, nor does every with divorced parents have marriage the ends in divorce" (Magarrell and Barley 17).
Works Cited
Magarrell, Roberta, and Dean Barley. “Breaking the Chain of Negative Family Influences.” Marriages and Families (2005): 17-22. Print.
McMillen, J. Curtis, and Gregory B. Rideout. “Breaking Intergenerational Cycles: Theoretical Tools for Social Workers.” Social Service Review 70.3 (1996): 378-399. Print.
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