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Julie Myerson - why am I not surprised that a book has materialised concerning her own son's drug issues?

(1001 Posts)
glasjam Sun 01-Mar-09 20:57:25

Read this is in today's Observer

Does anyone else have the uncomfortable feeling that I have on learning that she is writing about her son's drug problems? I know that writers often mine their own personal experiences for material but I think she's putting her literary endeavours ahead of her son here. From what I can gather, he is still young, his drug issues are ongoing, and although he is out of the family home, surely this is risking any possible future reconcilliation? I also baulk at the way she "weaves historical research about Yelloly with her disturbing account of her son's ejection from the family home" It just smacks of middle-class-writer angst.

My cynicism is further fuelled by my very strong suspicion that Julie Myerson is the author of Living with Teenagers - but that's another story...

Threadworm Thu 12-Mar-09 13:15:59

ooh, mondo. I've just learned a new word.

AitchTwoOh Thu 12-Mar-09 13:19:01


it's fuck up world didn't have the ring.

it is like some bizarro version of the osbournes, isn't it? wasn't the sister's baby gorgeous in the photo? although wouldn't have thought geoffrey would have scored big on the name threads.

ScottishMummy Thu 12-Mar-09 13:36:16

had never heard of JM prior to this debacle and after the publicity have no desire to read her indulgent blithering

traispng her son and his adolescent turmoil through media is icky

how did the drug addled teen give informed consent?

more media miles for the London chaterrati. yawn

Habbibu Thu 12-Mar-09 13:43:15

I prefer Sharon Osbourne, and suspect her kids have a much better relationship with her than JM's do - they know she'll give as good as she gets!

cherryblossoms Thu 12-Mar-09 13:55:30

Yes - Osbourne's with 'A' levels.

I've been trawling schools and asking 6th form teachers how/what they teach. At one school, I was told they used the comparison paper to look at the concepts of "hermeneutic suspicion" and "the unreliable narrator" - guess they have at least two more candidates for that now.

I think that is one family that is living a discussion of "the power involved in possession of the authorised version".

Actually, I have to give myself a pat on the back. I read "Sleepwalking" and out of interest, tried to reconstruct what the sister's, suppressed, version of the "event" might be. Ha! I was almost exactly right - though i didn't "get" the mum's "affair".

And I'm still resenting how much i am letting myself be sucked into this!

cherryblossoms Thu 12-Mar-09 13:57:15

Asking English teachers, that is.

abraid Thu 12-Mar-09 14:03:00

no desire to read her indulgent blithering


Whatever else she's done, JM is a good novelist. Sometimes it's hard to separate what we feel about an author personally from what we feel about their books. I've never read Arthur Koestler because he raped a woman during WW2 and I found that so appalling it put me off reading his stuff.

Threadworm Thu 12-Mar-09 14:09:07

I like that phrase "the power involved in possession of the authorised version". Is it an Eng Lit phrase or a psycholog one?

Didn't RD Laing quote the line in hamlet that goes something like 'I see nothing and I see all there is'? To make his point that parental possession of 'the authorised version' drives their children into what gets called psychosis but which is in fact the expression of some de-authorized truth?

(Yes I know he was a loon but it is interesting in present case???)

glasjam Thu 12-Mar-09 14:55:20

F**k a duck - I can't believe that he asked her outright after episode 6 whether she was the author and then asked her AGAIN and she denied it shock shock - COMPLETELY blows out the water her bleatings about wanting to keep it anonymous to protect her children (but we knew that already didn't we) She knew they were on the case, knew that they were having shit about it at school and still her compulsion was to carry on regardless, collect it all together and make a book and then for good measure write another book. Shocking.

Perhaps Jake is not telling the 100% truth but at least it's his truth and he's getting a voice for once. BUT he has one almighty axe to grind and gawd bless him he's got every right to grind away. But trying to deny him his voice by making out he's a disreputable, unreliable witness to this all is making the Tiresome Myerson just more pathetic.

What will happen to the book though? It was supposed to be being rushed out early - does anyone know if this has happened? Do you think on ANY level this publicity is doing her any good? (A question to all you journos/writers out there - there seem quite a few!)

(am off now to hide the matches...)

Threadworm Thu 12-Mar-09 14:57:48

lol Tiresome Myerson!

cherryblossoms Thu 12-Mar-09 15:04:46

Abraid - yup, separating the writing and the writer and the fictive and the real is soooo important. And I guess that's part of the secret of the occult pull of this news story, in that it doesn't so much as gesture towards the debatable, shifting boundary between the two as put on its wellies and yomp through it.

Threadworm - I like that quote!! I came across the phrase in the course of studying English - so wish I'd come across that R. D. Laing phrase.

Seriously, i am an angry woman. I am living the dark side of celebrity/reality culture. And I am resentful and violent!!!
I object to the fact my emotional responses are pulled into this situation (of which I know little and can do less).

There's a limit to the "turning the page" approach because, the fact is, it's structured so that it's private stuff, in the public sphere - and that is, by definition "our" space. And it's structured to pull intimate emotional responses from us.

We should start a thread of objection - where objectors can hang out and work out why it's so awful. Because, while I did read about some of the articles/research about this culture on the "Jade" thread, it strikes me they don't go anywhere near the emotional ( ... is "damage" too strong a word? ... perhaps ... another one then ... ) effect this has on us, the audience.

Gah! This taste for the authentic is making us sick!

ScottishMummy Thu 12-Mar-09 15:04:46

having read links of JM writing.i don't like the composition,or the content.not personal reaction to this debacle,but it certainly doesn't give an enhanced representation does it

however,like a media luvvies,she will get publicity and her notoriety has increased.long term she will probably write a book and most likely Jake too

WilfSell Thu 12-Mar-09 16:44:17

Interesting stuff on this thread. That DM article does indeed add to the Tiresome's Fuck Up. But the authorship debate inherent here only makes VERY and horrifically public the kinds of things that go on in families all the time. That contestation of positions is precisely what drives familial conflict. The 'good' daughter, Mini Tiresome in the DM article was gratingly, public. 'I certainly didn't see any violence in my darling daddy...' Right. You didn't see it. Doesn't mean it didn't happen though love: youngest daughters are typically protected from the realities of family dramas. And as we're seeing with poor old Jake's recreation of his mother's traumas, eldest kids have to take the flak full on (as Julie Tiresome apparently has).

Where's a psychotherapist when MN needs one?

WilfSell Thu 12-Mar-09 16:45:03

meant to say 'gratingly, publicly naive'

abraid Thu 12-Mar-09 16:52:30

'doesn't so much as gesture towards the debatable, shifting boundary between the two as put on its wellies and yomp through it.'


bettany Thu 12-Mar-09 17:13:47

On the plus side, this story is really cheering me up. It's almost making my family seem normal.

bleh Thu 12-Mar-09 17:43:35

I love that the DM has decided to capitalise on this even more, and reprint the argument between the sisters. So shameless

justaboutisawayfromhome Thu 12-Mar-09 18:03:54

Message withdrawn

Fennel Thu 12-Mar-09 18:04:48

I'm enjoying that younger sister in the Mail. "Keeping the money has nothing to do with greed: it's about ethics."

Yeah, right hmm

bagsforlife Thu 12-Mar-09 18:09:44

She is a good and respected novelist. I expect the son will turn out to be a novelist too in the end.

cherryblossoms Thu 12-Mar-09 18:14:25

bagsforlife - I suspect that may be based in a wish for a "happy ending".

Bizarrely - I just keep on hoping for some kind of "happy ending", too.

I think I prefer my gladiatorial contests to take place in the reign of Marcus Aurelius, where at least the tightrope walkers had safety nets. Not that it helped those down below being mauled by the wild animals.

I want it to stop! [wail]

bagsforlife Thu 12-Mar-09 18:18:17

The thing is we are only following it because we are on here with morningpaper giving us more and more links to the Daily Mail. The vast majority of people have probably not read all the ins and outs as we have, thus being drawn inexoribly into the whole debacle.

Habbibu Thu 12-Mar-09 18:32:40

MorningPaper is IN ON IT! She must have a book coming out - the MumsNet Guide to the Myersons.

dittany Thu 12-Mar-09 18:40:10

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

DandyLioness Thu 12-Mar-09 18:44:45

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