If Marilyn Monroe Were Still Alive Today…
By Dr. Alma Bond
As a practicing psychotherapist for over 37 years and the author of 21 books, I have devoted my writing career to studying important female cultural icons such as Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, Maria Callas, Hilary Clinton and others.
Writing about icons is like living many lives. We are here for so short a time, and really know only a sliver of reality. My little fragment of existence gets a bit claustrophobic at times. Writing about people I admire and would like to be greatly expands my life. My newly published novel, Marilyn Monroe: On the Couch, for example, is the closest I can ever get to being a famous movie star, which was an ambition of mine when I was a child.
I often ask myself, “what if Marilyn Monroe had not killed herself and was still alive today?” Based on my expertise as psychoanalyst, my extensive research, and my writer’s imagination, I wanted to share with readers of Booklingly Yours what I believe her future would have been like:
I think Marilyn may well have remarried Joe Dimaggio, who, when you discount her fantasies, was the real love of her life. He was the best friend and sex partner she ever had, and they loved each other to the bitter end. What a tragedy that wife beating is common in Sicily, which was Joe’s heritage, and why he felt justified in beating her up when she allowed her “crotch to be visible all over New York” in the shooting of the famous subway wind-blowing scene! He learned better, and pleaded with her to remarry him, saying “I don’t blame you for divorcing me. I would have done the same.” She left him because she couldn’t tolerate physical abuse, as it brought back terrible memories of the brutality she had suffered in her childhood. I am sure Joe learned his lesson and never would have raised a hand to her again. He would have taken care of her, babied her, and become the father figure she yearned for all her life and never knew was there all the time for the taking.
She never would have had children, as her endometriosis and repeated abortions destroyed her uterus. I don’t believe she would have adopted a child, as she knew in her heart that she was too much a child herself to take on the responsibility. But she loved Joe’s son, Joe, Jr, as her own. If he had married in her lifetime and had children, Marilyn would have made a superb grandmother, in which she would have played with them, showered them with toys and pets, and then gone home. I suspect the Dimaggios would have divided their time between New York, where Marilyn would perform on Broadway, and San Francisco, which was Joe’s true home. They might have bought a house in the Village, where Marilyn at long last would have had the home she craved and never really had.
I believe if she were alive today at age 87, she would still be an extremely beautiful woman, as her older half-sister Berniece Miracle is. More important, she certainly would have continued to develop as an actress, and become more confident in her art. She would have become a great tragedienne, as Lee Strasburg predicted she would, and played the roles she always wanted to, such as Grushenka, in "The Brothers Karamasov." I think she would have made perhaps the greatest Lady Macbeth of all time. I also think she would have made the best Blanche Dubois ever, in "A Streetcar Named Desire." She was made to play Blanche. What woman ever lived who could have understand her better? Marilyn herself said that she was looking forward to becoming a great character actress like Marie Dressler when she grew old,.
Marilyn was a genius in many ways, both as an actress and an intellectual. Her IQ was 169. She had a fabulous library of thousands of books, including classics such as those by Fyodor Dosteovsky and Aleksey Konstantinovich Tolstoy. I think if she had lived she would have settled down in her library greedily devouring the many books she had no time for in her busy life as an actress and addict.
What about her addictions to pills and alcohol? They surely were a substitute for the love she lacked as a child and never allowed herself to enjoy as an adult. As the beloved wife of Joe Dimaggio, she would have had less need for her addictions. I believe he would have made her go into a 12-step recovery program, and because she loved him she would have listened, as when he took her out of Payne Whitney and placed her in a more amenable psychiatric setting. Because she had a reason to get well, she would have stuck with the program. I think, too, that she would have gone into psychoanalysis with an analyst like the one in my book, "Marilyn Monroe: On the Couch," who truly understood her and would not have spoiled her and broken all the rules of psychoanalysis because she was a celebrity, as her psychiatrist, Dr. Greenson, did.
She would have left her promiscuity behind her, as she and Joe enjoyed great sex, and she knew that infidelity was the one thing he would not have put up with in his wife. Also, as she became better known as a great actress, she would have had no need for a “casting couch” to be given parts. As she matured, she could have selected and starred in any play she choose. I suspect she eventually would have portrayed all the great Shakespeare heroines, and been wonderful for example as Portia and Kate.
If only! If only! How sad that Marilyn Monroe did not live long enough to develop her potential as a loving wife and great actress. The world is forever depleted by her loss. Such a genius comes along only once in a lifetime, and we will never see her like again.
Marilyn Monroe: ON THE COUCH
Author: Dr. Alma Bond
File Size: 485 KB
Print Length: 228 pages
Publisher: Bancroft Press (September 30, 2013)
Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
About the book:
There is much written, rumored, told, and retold about Marilyn Monroe, but the most unusual and remarkable fact about her is this: In person as well in her films, she appeared to be outright luminous--enveloped by a glow, like a firefly in the dark.
Even Laurence Olivier, who costarred with Marilyn in the 1957 film The Prince and the Showgirl, saw it. Though he seemed to dislike her intensely, he had to admit that, in all her scenes, she lit up the screen.
But exquisite as it can be, luminosity can be a kind of camouflage. It can hide the truth underneath.
What exactly was Marilyn illuminating in the atmosphere that surrounded her? Her beauty was certainly stunning, dazzling--blinding, even--but what did it hide?
Marilyn, more brilliant than many understood, knew well the difference between looking upon the light and seeing beyond the glow. Men do not see me, she said. They just lay their eyes on me.
Psychoanalyst and longtime woman's biographer Dr. Alma Bond imagines, in detail, a several-year stretch during the late 1950s and early 1960s, when Marilyn, an exceedingly fragile figure, submits to analysis on the couch of Manhattan psychoanalyst Dr. Darcy Dale and, following her return to Hollywood, corresponds with her.
Brilliantly, entertainingly, and movingly, Marilyn Monroe: On the Couch shows just what lay beneath Marilyn's radiance. Dr. Dale, a fictional stand-in for the author, Dr. Bond, sees Marilyn Monroe as few ever have, both inside and out, and transfers those insights to readers. It's impossible to imagine anyone providing a better, more complete, intimate, and unforgettable understanding of this truly remarkable, iconic, and even pivotal figure in film and sexual history.
For more information, visit: www.almabondauthor.com