How Relationships Change Over Time in “And Just Like That…” Episode 7
This is a recap for “And Just Like That…” Season 1 Episode 7. There will be spoilers beyond this point. Please proceed with caution (because we don’t want to be the ones who spoil you!)
Carrie has done what she does best, wrote a book about losing Big. There’s just one problem… it’s really depressing and her agent suggests if Carrie could just go on a date to offer readers some hope in the epilogue, the book would be a hit.
Before we continue, just another reminder that there will be spoilers beyond this point for “And Just Like That…” Season 1 Episode 7. Not up to date? Read Season 1 Episode 6’s recap.
Carrie isn’t keen on dating, but is willing to go on one date to placate her agent and sell her book. Fortunately Seema has already created a profile for Carrie on a dating app. Carrie picks a guy out and schedules a date.
Nya is still struggling with having a baby. After deciding against another round of IVF she thought she had gotten pregnant but it turned out to be a false alarm. Her husband finds out when a text comes through in their car from Miranda saying she was sorry Nya wasn’t pregnant.
Charlotte and Harry are having an ongoing argument about her not willing to apologize for knocking him over during a doubles match of tennis they play with LTW and her husband.
Miranda tries to rekindle her sex life with Steve unsuccessfully while still pining over Che.
Carries date goes astoundingly poorly when both she and her date Peter (Jon Tenney) start by swapping stories of how their respective spouses died and ends with both of them getting sick from drinking too much.
At the school fundraiser for Lily and Rock, lunch with Carrie is one of the auction items. When it doesn’t get any bids, Peter (who happens to be a math teacher at the school) bids on it and they decide to try for a second date. The entertainment for the evening happens to be Che and she and Miranda hook up.
Let’s break down some major themes in this episode:
Writing to process trauma
Admittedly this one is a bit self indulgent on my part, but hear me out. Carrie has made a career out of writing about her life. It’s no surprise that she would take the trauma of what happened with Big and turn it into a book. This made me think of what I and many of the other writers here on The Mighty do… we take our lived experiences with our unique conditions and write about them, not just to help us process and make sense of our experiences, but to help others feel less alone in their experiences. This is an impulse I resonate with deeply. I personally find expressing my feelings about something far easier to write about than to say verbally. I’m guessing Carrie feels the same way.
The patriarchy and women’s compulsive need to apologize
Charlotte and Harry’s argument over her unwillingness to apologize for knocking him over during their tennis match comes to a head at the school fundraiser where Harry keeps hounding Charlotte by documenting how many times she says “I’m sorry” to everyone and their uncle for seemingly no reason and every reason. Charlotte astutely notes “Women apologize to the whole world all day long for everything. Tennis is the one place that I don’t have to do that.”
This speaks to a very real and very insidious aspect of how women feel like they don’t deserve to occupy space in this world. I’m one of those who tends to say sorry so much that it’s almost a habit. I don’t even realize I do it. But the truth is that it comes from a deep place of insecurity, like I don’t belong and I don’t deserve to have needs. I don’t think this is just a trauma response, although that is a part of why I do it. I think it’s a fundamental truth for women living in a world where they are undervalued and over scrutinized.
Does Miranda need sex or therapy?
There’s nothing wrong with having sexual needs or questioning ones sexual identity. But… I think there’s a lot more going on with Miranda. She seems deeply insecure, incredibly unhappy and very desperate to find some sense of connection. Carrie suggests couples therapy and Miranda blows her off. Then when she has sex with Che she tells Che she loves them, to which Che jokingly replies that it’s probably the weed and the sex. I’m afraid that Miranda is going to get hurt by Che because Miranda is conflating sex with love.
It’s not uncommon for relationships to hit rough patches after years of marriage. We tend to fall into habits that are monotonous, stop communicating effectively and with aging bodies sex can sometimes become more of a challenge. But these are all things that can be dealt with in couples counseling if a couple truly cares for one another. Therapy isn’t a one and done prospect. It’s not uncommon to revisit therapy at different points in life as things shift and new challenges emerge. I would love to see Miranda work through what’s going on for her rather than hoping that whatever this relationship with Che is will miraculously solve all of her problems.
Dating after the death of a spouse: Carrie is dubious about dating after Bigs death, and perhaps she’s not ready yet. Some people never are after they lose the love of their life. But as she mentions at the end of the episode… maybe she’s found a glimmer of hope, not just for her readers but for herself.
Couples argue and that’s normal: Nya and her husband, Charlotte and Harry, LTW and her husband… all of the couples had moments of tension between them and it’s ironic that they comment about not wanting to be “that couple.” The truth is we are all “that couple.” Conflict is inevitable in a long-term relationship. How we deal with that conflict is what matters.
Will Carrie and Peter become an item? Will Che break Miranda’s heart? Will Nya get pregnant? Stay tuned.
Image via HBO Asia YouTube page