Swimming away from fists.


The late night movie is “Sleeping with the Enemy”.  I think it has always been a late night movie, I remember watching it with my mum as a kid.

Sleeping with the enemy is a 1990 movie about a meek wife (Julia Roberts with eyebrows) and her jackass of a controlling husband (some guy with a mustache) who likes to go all UFC on her much smaller frame.

The big plot point that my mum and I enjoyed was that Julia Roberts escapes her abusive marriage by faking her drowning.  Faking death has long been used to escape husbands, overbearing wives, bills etc, but in this particular case Julia chooses drowning because her husband knows she’s afraid of water and cannot swim.  Little does the mustachioed jerk know that his wife has been taking secret swim lessons at the local Y.

As a young girl I remember Mum praising the virtues of being able to swim, I had been able to swim since I was 18 months old and trained competitively. Watching Julia Roberts thrash through the stormy surf to freedom my little self thought “I can swim way better than her, I could escape with ease!”  And so I grew up somehow equating the ability to swim well with being able to flee abusive men.

I’m sure there are so many women in the world who wish that all they had to do to avoid the next blow was be to a killer at the freestyle.

Sometimes swimming is not enough.


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