Last night Mr. Fenway and I were lucky enough to view Sleepwalk With Me, a film based on the real life experiences of comic Mike Birbiglia and co-written in part with Ira Glass of This American Life fame. While it is a great movie with a lot of laughs that I highly recommend (it will be coming to theaters this August), the film is ultimately about his relationship with his girlfriend at the time. Without giving too much away (though the story is very much an autobiography of sorts), one of the central questions in the film is dealing with anger in relationships. The character “Matt” goes through a lot because he is worried about upsetting Abby, his girlfriend. Because he is worried about making her mad, he does not talk about any of his concerns with their relationship. His repressions manifest themselves, in part, though his sleepwalking disorder while his comedy career starts to take off when he tells the audience the truths that he is withholding from his girlfriend.
This led to some interesting discussions on the way home after the film for Mr. Fenway and I. We talked about how important it was to be openly commutative and to try not to hide what we are thinking/feeling based on not wanting to upset the other person. I know that I have been guilty of this (it’s always easier to just let things slide if they don’t bother me that much than to bring up something that could cause distress or for the other person to be upset- not just in my relationship with Mr. Fenway but in all my interactions with others). It was interesting to see the film’s take on how hiding these things, while maybe easier in the short term, could ultimately lead to incredible complications within a relationship. Though the film used humor and had me laughing more than I have at a movie in quite some time, the message was one of the more serious ones I have seen in a film centered on relationships. I loved that going to see it not only served as a “date night” experience for us, but provided us with a lot of talking points that made it an even richer experience.
And now, just for fun, a clip from the movie:
Have you ever found a movie that made you think about your relationship in a different way? Was it unexpected?
Do you ever not mention something to your significant other that is important because you don’t want to upset them?