You only like the beginning of things, Dr. Fay Miller says to Don Draper on Mad Men.
But isn’t that human nature? We all like the beginning of things best. When something still has that new car smell. When it’s fresh and exciting.
We like the bloom much better than the dying rose.
It’s the same in relationships, and that’s what Dr. Fay was saying. At the beginning, we try our hardest. We send love notes and cards, buy presents in Tiffany-blue boxes. We write poems and love letters. Our beloved is cast in rosy hues.
But the rubber meets the road after the new has worn off. When the reality of day-to-day life sets it: problem-solving, negotiating, dealing with the mundane.
The beginning of a relationship is all fun. The true test is when it requires more effort and harder work. How we manage through challenges tells us the outcome of our relationship.
Dr. Fay wanted Don Draper to be the best man he could be. To deal head-on with his considerable issue(s). She would have been great for him.
But Don didn’t want to do the work. Just didn’t. So he took the safe route.
Now that the shock of Don’s choice has worn off, I think this turn of events bodes well for the new season of Mad Men. Had he chosen Dr. Fay, he would have dealt with his secret and the series would lose its pivot point. Choosing Megan gives the writers a lot of plot leeway.
It’s not a given that the relationship will fail. Megan has depth writers have only hinted at. I suspect she’s got a backbone of steel and will be up for what’s ahead.
So, after the season and its finale have been digested for a day, I’m convinced the new season will be better than ever. Can’t wait to see what Weiner and his writers have in store for us.