Diana Gabaldon’s ‘Outlander’ series and idolizing dysfunctional relationships…

Diana Gabaldon’s ‘Outlander’ series and idolizing dysfunctional relationships… August 18, 2014

… On the recommendation of women everywhere I decided to give Diana Gabaldon’s popular series, Outlander, a try.

And yeah.

Seriously, women! This is what passes as romance?

I commented that Jaime and Claire’s relationship was dysfunctional at best. “Keep reading”, you said. “It gets better”, you promised.

Jaime threatens to beat Claire lots. “Yes, but just keep reading”, it gets better.

Jaime beats Claire “within an inch of her life” for running off and almost getting herself raped. “Oh, but she gets him back”, excusing the behavior. “Trust me, keep reading.”

Jaime rapes Claire upon their return to Castle Leoch.

I stop reading. Full stop.

This series is nothing more than a soap opera with kilts. I don’t have patience for soap operas and detest relationship drama type stories because it glamorizes dysfunction.

The particular marital rape scene was my final straw. It was presented to the reader as something erotic and meant to arouse. Outlander is a bodice ripper after all. But when a wife tells her husband to stop and that he’s hurting her and he not only ignores her pleas but tells her he has no intention of being gentle, this is rape. And rape is not entertaining to read or something I consider erotic, no matter the context.

It’s why I gave up on the Game of Thrones books and HBO adaptation.

Fighting all the time. Sexual tension. Physical violence. Spousal abuse. That’s not romance or passion and it most certainly isn’t healthy.

As a woman who has survived a violent abusive relationship, y’all can take my word for it. That type of behavior is not romantic.

“Yes, but it’s just fantasy”, you justify.

This is what you fantasize about?

I fantasize about a man who will go to church with me every Sunday and tell me he finds my clumsiness endearing.

You want romance? How’s this for romantical?


For fans of this series, I ask — if you have a daughter would you want her reading this series and idolizing this particular adulterous relationship? Chances are, probably not.

Women need to wean themselves off unrealistic rom-com movies, as well as television and literature that promotes unhealthy relationships. As a child of divorced parents, and myself a divorcee, what I really need is more exposure to examples of relationships that offer a genuine glimpse into real and true love. Go sell crazy somewhere else, I’m all stocked up.

Give me a plain old love story where the couple is monogamous and true. Where husbands and wives treat each other with kindness and mutual respect. Where fathers don’t abandon their children. Where wives don’t emotionally manipulate their husbands.

I’ll take that any day over what passes as romance in modern day literature.

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