For anyone who hasn’t seen the movie, watch it first before reading. This post contains spoilers.

Every once in a while I find myself wanting to watch this movie. I must want to do this when I feel it’s time to have a good cry because I cry like a baby every time I watch it. It contains many emotional triggers, mostly having to do with the character Jenny. The other triggers are everyday things that just happen to people, sometimes Jenny, that are sad. Being the silly romantic and overly compassionate person that I am, I go through quite a few tissues watching it. This is a rather sensitive and personal thing, but I’ve always wondered if others who have seen the movie react in a similar fashion.

It all starts for me with Forrest’s first bus ride to school. Having been bullied almost every day on the bus to my first half of first grade this starts the emotional roller coaster. I only wish there would have been a Forrest on that bus for me to sit with and befriend. Jenny’s abuse is another trigger, but at least she has Forrest to be there for her, even though he didn’t understand what was going on. Then there is Forrest losing his best friend in Vietnam, Lt. Dan losing his legs, and the thought of all of the men who lost their lives, died horrible deaths, returned injured, and did not return as heroes.

Jenny leaving Forrest repeatedly is what really gets to me the most. Yes, I’m aware it would change the story, there wouldn’t be a movie, etc. if things were different about the movie. I guess that’s what makes it so good. Clearly he is a good man. He’s honest, faithful, respectful and protective. Somehow throughout the scenes she feels he’s not right for her, not exciting enough maybe or not intelligent enough. I’m not sure. It never really tells you what she’s thinking. I suppose she could be thinking that she’s not good enough for him. It’s possible. She gets into worse and worse relationships and situations searching for whatever it is she’s searching for, when all along she has a perfect life right in front of her. It’s heart wrenching and I can’t stand it.

In one scene Jenny is slapped by her so-called boyfriend. Forrest pounds the crap out of him. He’s smart enough to understand the boyfriend shouldn’t be hitting her and even tells her so. Who’s the smart one now Jenny? Forrest tells her she should be going home and not back on the bus with the jerk and gives the so-called boyfriend dirty looks. He even tells Jenny he’s always wanted to be her boyfriend. Stupid, stupid girl.

Another tear-jerker of a scene, at least for me, is when Jenny comes home to stay with Forrest and then leaves abruptly, apparently without saying goodbye. Forrest wanders around the house looking at the places she had been in the house. He stands in the doorway to her room and stares at her empty bed. Why doesn’t someone just tear my heart out and stomp on it.

They save the best for last as Jenny introduces Forrest to his son and then she explains to Forrest how she is ill with some sort of virus. They never come out and say it, but you have to assume it’s HIV the way she explains that it’s something new and that the doctors don’t know what to do for her, and with all of her past drug use and promiscuity. He tells her to come home and stay with him and that he will take care of her, and he marries her. He’s loved her all along, been true to her, thought about her always, and she finally loves him!

It still ends badly because she dies so young.

To all of the Jennys out there, who have an honest, faithful, respectful, and protective man, who may not be perfect in other respects, hold him close and never let go.

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