What does trauma feel like? Suffering from severe fear, anxiety, or depression. Unable to form close, satisfying relationships. Experiencing terrifying memories, nightmares, or flashbacks. It was exactly what Jenny was feeling in the movie. Forrest loved her but she was pushing him away everytime. she was not a bad person. She did not have mother, She raised by her father, a farmer who physically and sexually abused her. He was always kissing and touching her. She was not loved by anyone when she was child which cause she did not get to know what love is, her behaviour was because she collapsed.
Trauma often destroys people’s lives because many people can not accept that they are a victim, won’t let others help them, and feel undeserving of love like Jenny’s character.
When having a traumatic experience, many people can’t accept their reality or facts. One day when Jenny was not at school, Forrest went to her farm house.
Jenny’s drunken father pursues Jenny and Forrest, but they hid in a cornfield. A frightened Jenny instructs Forrest to kneel down and help her pray to God. She repeats, “Dear God, make me a bird, so that I can fly far, far, far away from here. Instead of searching a realistic solution, she choose to pray god so she can fly away from the situation that she was in. She started doing drugs as she gets older which shows that she was trying to escape from the real world.
In fact there was not much other things she could do because there was no one who could actually help her. Unfortunately most people who are sexually abused in childhood find themselves sexually exploited throughout life. Because of her sexual abuse from her father and also her path down drug addiction it’s obvious she would become a damaged person. She had a warped view on sex, love, and herself, she had a really low view on her self worth. In the late 70s she has succumbed further into a life of drugs and instability. Coming closest to suicide by nearly leaping off the top floor of a hotel. After a slip, she decides differently and steps down from the ledge, tearfully contemplating her life decisions. She was a victim of childhood sexual abuse by her father. She was kind and compassionate but messed up, usually making decisions that caused her harm.
I think sometimes we reach a point where we just don’t feel worthy of anything or anyone. We choose what we think we deserve and it’s not always the best. Forrest loved Jenny in a way that she had never experienced before. It was unselfish and pure. When she was young, being with Forrest allowed her to escape her normal life. He was simple in so many ways, and I’m sure it was a refuge from the ugliness and complexity of her life at home. The thing about Forrest is what you see is what you get. There’s no alterior motives or lies to cover true feelings. Every other relationship she was in, whether willingly or not, was shrouded with lies and selfishness. Anger and love became tied together for her in a way that it never should be.
What do we usually do when we encounter something that goes against the very grain of our being? We run away. And it’s kind of ironic that the most iconic line in that movie is run, Forrest, run because every time she yells it he runs away from her while she stands there. Now, he’s not actually trying to run from her of course. She’s the one telling him to run, but she’s the one trying to run from him and push him away throughout the movie.