Originally Posted by Don S
I can't disagree more. Paige is a really really good kid IMO. I only wish my kids were as well behaved and as enlightened as Paige. I wonder if the people blaming Paige (as opposed to the parents) for all of this actually have kids, or raised kids before. She has been put in a terrible, awful position by her parents actions, a position that requires her to act a certain way, lie, be friends with a pastor (sure, every teenager wants that, right?), and generally try to be perfect so that she doesn't accidentally rat out her parents. That is just a TREMENDOUS burden to place on a teenage girl. She seems to have handled the whole thing with tremendous maturity and grace IMO. If you think the way she acted with her parents was "very aggressive", we have different ideas of aggressive behavior in teenagers.
She took photos of words that she read, words that reinforced a question she had in her mind about what is normal, and about if she can be a normal kid. This little photo incident was really the only "acting out" I noticed. If that is the WORST thing this kid did , in THIS situation, then I think some folks need to re-examine the overall context here. Imagine any teenage girl today, who - at say 17 years old - is told (a) mommy and daddy are Russian spies (b) you can't see your boyfriend anymore (c) you have to be friends with a pastor indefinitely and be always on guard with him and everyone. In this situation, Paige has shown remarkable maturity, asked intelligent questions, and behaved very well IMO compared to almost any teenager I know. YMMV I guess..
Surprisingly, I agree with much of what you said. Paige had no idea what she was getting herself into. It is way too much to put on a kid of her age. They never should have told her in the first place, but what would have been the outcome of that? Paige just getting more and more insistent. more emotionally out of control, and that would have drawn attention to the parents, with more adults asking questions about this double life they lead (even with Paige "under control" the pastor thinks there is sexual abuse!). Rock, meet hard place.
No, I do not think she is a bad kid (I've had some tangential experience with that concept), but her insistence on knowing about her parent's business was the inception of this entire situation. In reality, most kids that age want nothing to do with their parents anymore and could care less what they do, except where it restricts the kid's freedom. Paige is a different kind of kid, smarter, more observant, and now she is paying the price.
The diary is a cry for help to her parents, but the secret is already out there and things can never go back to what they were. So, what's the final outcome of this mess? Somebody is gonna die, perhaps more than one somebody. High price to pay for satisfying the curiosity of a child.
So, yeah, the tone of my prior post was to put the blame on the victim. That was, admittedly, a limited viewpoint and reflected my frustration with the teenager-focused plot. I just want this story line to go away so the focus can be on the adults again.