Post by Contributing Author, The White Sow
For those of you wondering what a pig has to do with Outlander, I assure you that I am a character in Outlander. Unfortunately, I do not appear until book 4, Drums of Autumn. For those of you who have read the books, you already know how I fit into the storyline. For those only familiar with the television series, I won’t reveal too much, but suffice it to say, I have spent many an evening listening to the constant banter of the Frasers, first in the pantry and later in my sanctuary under the house. What credentials authorize me to psychoanalyze this family dynamic? Am I a psychologist or psychiatrist? No, but I have watched them on TV and I am home schooled. I also know a wise Hospital Pastoral Counselor who taught me an important lesson that I highlight in this article.
Why the Frasers Constantly Battle Trouble
While perusing the many comments on Outlander Twitter and Facebook sites, I found one reoccurring concern.—-Why are the Frasers always in trouble? I don’t ask, “Why?”, I ask, “Why, not?” Let me introduce you to the Karpman Drama Triangle. There are three roles we can play in life—-persecutor, rescuer, and victim. The theory is that if you play one of these rolls you will eventually become one of the others.
Let’s take a look at the King of Men, James Alexander Malcolm Mackenzie Fraser —- a rescuer if there ever was one. We love the way he rushes to save Claire from the nightmare known as Black Jack Randall and valiantly volunteers to marry her. We love that he tries to save young Rabbie MacNab from his abusive father. What wonderful reward does he receive—— Rabbie’s father turns him in to the English soldiers. Now he is a victim.
And our beloved heroine, Claire Beauchamp Randall Fraser, World War II Nurse and self proclaimed healer, will sacrifice everything to cure the sick. Despite the superstitious town folk who believe Mrs. Fitz nephew, Thomas Baxter, demon possessed, Claire charges in to save his life. She is determined to rescue a dying infant from its fate as a doomed “fairy changeling”, fails to save the child and has the whole town whispering “witch” behind her back. Both these selfless acts only help to make Claire the victim of the angry town folk who are ready to burn her at the stake. Now she is the one who needs rescuing. But, not to worry, Super Jamie is on his way to save the day.
So what about the persecutor, you may ask? Black Jack Randall is the ultimate villain who does eventually become a victim, although maybe not until his duel with Jamie in book two or his desperation to help his dying brother, do we see any inkling of that. We do see Rabbie McNab’s father go from persecutor to victim when the Fraser clan burns down his house and take his life for turning Jamie in to the British.
What Does This Mean For the Fraser’s Future
Throughout the 10 books that will depict the ongoing saga of the Frasers, I can guarantee we will see the Karpman Triangle continue. We will watch these characters and all who encounter the dynamic duo provide endless calamity as they move from one predicament to the next. This behavior tends to run in families, so don’t be surprised if we see Fraser relatives and offspring play these same roles. Fortunately, the animals in this epic tale provide some modicum of sanity. We do not play the role of rescuer, persecutor, or victim. Our behaviors are typical of our species.
It’s time for me to head back under the floor. I have to make more observations then take a nap. If you have any questions about my experiences with the Frasers, please leave them in the comments and I will answer them when I wake up.