Evelyn Lau Essay

Evelyn Lau is an author with which I can identify with. Her lack of humility
gives rise to self-awareness. She does not hide under a mask of sorrow, she
simply puts into words how she reacts and feels towards her life’s struggles.

She does not convey a deep sense of hostility or arrogance, but merely addresses
the conflicts through out her life with a graceful, honest manner. One can see
how Evelyn allows herself to let go of all inhibitions and “secrets” through
each of her works. She can face her past, and acknowledge her pain, unlike most
people. Her ability to do this is what gives every person an identity they can
relate with; whether it be living on the streets, coping with a drug addiction,
or “dealing” with a dysfunctional family. Evelyn, unlike most people, can
pin point her torment. Her father was the center of her universe (Details 3),
always loving, compassionate and with someone she could share her childhood
dreams. However, their relationship ended abruptly while she was only ten years
old. This severed bond caused her much grief. She longed for love and affection,
which her mother could not provide. Evelyn’s self loathing began while she was
a per-adolescent ( Details 2). Her fathers emotional passivity caused Evelyn to
destroy herself physically. She chose her body as her tool of destruction, for
she felt, no one could control her body, not even her neurotic mother (Details
2). I do not think that Evelyn blames her fathers lack of love, on the fact that
he lost his job(2). It seems to me that he lost himself, for he saw his daughter
as a young woman; not as a child. This realization may have been the reason he
faded from her life. He lost touch with Evelyn’s child hood, and couldn’t cope
with the idea that his little girl was now a blossoming young lady. His
selfishness caused her so much angst. She began to believe that her father and
mother both disliked her presence, as a part of their family. (Details 3). At
the age of nine Evelyn began reading Harlequin Romance novels(Details 4) as a
way to vicariously feel love. This “love” enabled her to escape the harsh
reality that was her life. However ,”it ruined my idea of male female
relationships” (Details 2) Evelyn began to believe that women were supposed to
be weak, dependent creatures. And men were supposed to be older, handsome,
stronger, ideal mates for the weak woman. Her notions of this streered her
towards bulimia. Her bulimia took over her life. It was the one thing she
thought she could control, and the one thing she thought she could hide. But her
perfect vision was one where she could continue her weak womanly characteristics
(bulimia) and have a “father figure” mend her emotional scars. Her longing
for love is what drew her to self-mutilation. In a sick sense I can see why she
might have done this. She longed for the father she had as a young girl, to
swoop her into his arms and caress her nightmares into oblivion. As a result of
little fatherly love, Evelyn began her search for lovers which she classified as
the “father figure”, like those in the romance novels, “I always had this
thing for older men…I look for father figures all the time…” (Details 2).

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She openly admits that her search for men which can love her like a daughter is
a perverse one, and one which causes many problems in the relationship (2).

However, she continues this fantasy, and divulges her true feelings about
children “I hate children…I can’t imagine getting pregnant and having a
child. I think that would be horrible..” (1). This quote reveals to me that as
a person Evelyn is selfish. She does not wish to share her “fatherly” lover
with that of a child, for then both the child and the mother would be grasping
for the father’s attention. As I read through Evelyn’s works, I have come to
the conclusion that although she is able to pronounce her hatred she still has
many skeletons in the closet. She will not face her father to this day, allowing
regret, guilt, and anger to build inside of her (2). Evelyn had reason to feel
suppressed by her parents, but as a rising star one mustn’t succumb to the
idea that one’s past is fiction in one’s novel. And she has yet to reach
that pinnacle of understanding.


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