The Sally Draper Diaries: Grown-Ups Are the Worst

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"The Sally Draper Diaries" is an occasional series that imagines life in the world of Mad Men as seen through the eyes of Don Draper's angsty tween daughter. To that end, we've taken a few artistic liberties for the sake of exploring Sally's headspace; let us know what you think in the comments!


December 8, 1966

Dear Diary,

So much has happened since the last time I wrote! I’ve been really busy. We moved to Rye with Henry and our new house is really big. Daddy thinks it’s tacky. He calls Mom and Henry “Morticia and Gomez” like on The Addams Family. He moved too. He has a really nice apartment in the city with Megan. OH, and he and Megan got married. So now I have two dads and two moms. I hope this means more Christmas presents because otherwise, it’s kind of annoying. I have two houses with two sets of rules and two different bedtimes and even two new sets of grandparents. Sort of.

Grandma Pauline, Henry’s mom, babysits a lot and I think she likes to pretend that Bobby, Gene, and me are her REAL grandkids, but she’s still grumpy and she still smells like a toilet. I call her Bluto behind her back. Megan’s parents visited when Daddy got his award from the American Cancer Society, but I don’t think they like us. Or Daddy. I couldn’t even tell if they really liked Megan, and Megan is their own daughter. Then again, that doesn’t always mean anything. I don’t always think my mom likes me. She seems to like me more since she got fat, though. It’s weird. Sometimes my mom will be really nice and helpful for a long time, and then turn all grouchy and mean again. Like at Thanksgiving, when she told me about Anna Draper. I thought she was trying to help me with my family tree, but really she just wanted to ruin Thanksgiving for everyone.

At first, it really upset Daddy, although I think he was more mad because I was mean to Megan than he was because I knew about Anna. After I apologized to Megan, Daddy told me all about Anna and how they had to get married because of a law, but then they got divorced so he could marry Mom. I don’t understand what the point of the law was that made them get married if they just ended up getting divorced anyway, but I didn’t say anything. I might ask Glen about it. We talk on the phone a lot even though I’m not supposed to talk to him at all. That’s actually how Grandma Pauline hurt her ankle, but I told everyone that she tripped on one of Baby Gene’s toys. I dragged the phone into my bedroom and she tripped on the cord, so I try not to do that anymore, but I still talk to Glen when I can. Also, I called the ambulance and kept ice on her ankle and then called Daddy to come and get us instead of just crying like a baby the way Bobby did. I think I can take care of myself. I’m trying to be more of a grown-up. Some of my friends from school get to babysit their little brothers and sisters and even though I don’t want to have to watch Bobby and Gene, I don’t want to have a babysitter of my own anymore.

I never met Anna, but Daddy showed me a picture of the two of them. She had a cast on her leg but she was really pretty. She had blonde hair like me. Daddy looked really happy. I wonder why he wanted to marry my mom instead of her. I didn’t ask that either. Everyone had finally stopped yelling at each other and I’m not stupid. All of the adults that I know get angry when I ask them hard questions. They either get mad or they say, “It’s complicated.”

If it’s complicated, then you should explain it! That’s why I talk to Glen. He knows everything. His two sets of parents sent him to a boarding school but he hates it. I hope he gets to come home for the holidays. The last time I talked to him, he said he didn’t know yet.

Anyway, I don’t care if Megan’s parents don’t like us because I don’t like them very much either. I think I even dislike Megan’s mom more than I dislike Grandma Pauline because of what she did with Mr. Sterling at the awards dinner. I had a lot of fun even though Daddy made me take off the makeup Megan helped me put on. And my boots. I thought I looked a lot older than twelve and apparently, that was the problem. Mom didn’t like my boots either and she rolled her eyes when I said that Megan helped me pick them out. I’m not allowed to wear them outside of the house, so they just sit in the back of the closet now. I don’t care. I don’t like to think about the awards dinner because it was so disappointing. I thought it would be great to sit with the adults and act like an adult (even if I had to eat fish) but it wasn’t.

So I’m just really confused right now because I didn’t like being an adult and I STILL don’t like being a kid. What am I supposed to do?

Mom just left for her Weight Watchers meeting. I think I’ll call Glen.

Sincerely,
Sally Draper



PREVIOUSLY: The Sally Draper Diaries: It's Just a Milkshake!

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