Thursday, January 22, 2009
A survey of the romantic life of Eleanor Roosevelt
Well, like I promised; I finally pulled this out of "my documents":
There is one slight thing I have in common with this woman; the fact that I was born in 1984 and she in 1884 (and both grew up in New York). But here I wish to point out that politics and power don't change the fact that people have social existences and make poor as well as wise decisions.
To me it is clear that former first lady Eleanor Roosevelt made an unwise decision when agreeing to take Franklin (Roosevelt)’s proposal to marry. Although from a political standpoint she could have found no better way to elevate her stature than to marry a man who would become the future president, in essence, I feel, they were not really “made for each other”.
Franklin was naturally quite different than her. First of all she was much less attractive and socially adept than him; he liked to go to parties and was not very contemplative, or even interested in one-on-one companionship at all. She was a much more introverted and intellectual individual, who, due to her having spent most her time with books and school, was socially awkward (for she found "small talk" pointless).
After marriage it seemed that he became disillusioned by any initial romantic interest in her, and later became emotionally attached to a secretary she had hired, who was living with the Roosevelts. She too severed any emotional ties with him soon after marriage, and found solace thereafter only in her female friends, and with a certain young man during her old age who had a similar personality to her.
In essence though she had almost no choice in saying yes to such a dashing and politically successful life (and it was really Franklin who should not have suggested it in the first place!), but if her emotional life was more important to her than political success, I say she should have declined and looked elsewhere...
[A similar problem seems to exist with former president William Jefferson Clinton, and former first lady Hilary!]