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28 February 2012 @ 04:57 pm
Elena Gilbert: It's only love  
    Caroline: It doesn't matter what he does, Damon's gotten under your skin.
    Elena: That's not true.
    Caroline: God, just admit it, Elena, okay? You are attracted to him! In all of his bad brother glory.
    Elena: No.
    Caroline: Wait, no, you're not attracted to him, or no, you just won't admit it?
    Elena: I can't, Caroline! If I admit it, if I even thought it for just a second... What does that say about me?
    Caroline: It says you're human, Elena.
There has been a lot of anger and frustration towards Elena since "Dangerous Liaisons" aired, and those feelings continued on past the airing of "All My Children" as well. While other than some issue with the way she acted with Stefan, which was in character – and those were resolved within a few days – I haven't been upset with the character, in word or action. However, I'm still seeing a lot of venting and displeasure with her, and this makes me sad because I love Elena. So, taking advantage of the hiatus, I've compiled a bunch of thoughts and now I offer up an essay in defense of Elena Gilbert.

~ Elena's reaction to Damon's "I love you."

Everyone and their dog is aware that Damon loves her. However, Elena has only heard it three times before – once from her manipulative, biological mother, Isobel ("Isobel"), once from Stefan after Damon forced his blood on her ("The Last Day") and a dying Damon ("As I Lay Dying"). The first was six months to a year ago when she was just beginning to truly accept Damon as her friend, the second was when Elena was furious with Damon, and the last instance, well, Damon was dying and it's best not to go there because if Elena is one thing, it's denial-girl. So for all that everyone and their dog knows how Damon feels about Elena, it is not talked about. It truly is the elephant in the room; everyone tiptoes around it except for an occasional prod here or there. It's a fact, but it's an unspoken fact. And because it's treated as such, Elena can live in denial-land and do what she does best when she doesn't want to deal with consequences and that is pretend, pretend, pretend.

And that is exactly what she's been doing. Even with the kiss that the two shared, she didn't allow herself to accept that there was any permanence, any meaning to it. She told Bonnie that it wasn't going to happen again; she didn't even bother telling Caroline. While she gave the excuse for not telling her on everything crazy that had been going on in their lives, the truth is that she didn't want to tell her because that would mean discussing it. Which she did not want to do. Not only did she not tell Caroline, she didn't intend for Bonnie to know either. Damon was the one who spilled the beans to her, so Elena had no option except to shut the conversation down as swiftly as possible if she didn't want to deal with the ramifications of kissing Damon. And that's exactly what she did: Boom! It won't happen again, moving on. Of course, she did tell Stefan, but I think that she told him for a few reasons (none of which involved discussing her feelings). She did so partly to get a rise out of him and make him show that he still feels something, partly because she did feel guilty, and, finally, in part because she felt that he deserved to know due to the whole convoluted, complicated mess that is their relationship, and because the guy she kissed was his brother.

Still, it wasn't about discussing, acknowledging what was going on with Damon on her end, but rather how Stefan felt about it. And, of course, Stefan lives in denial-land as much as Elena so he not only didn't discuss how he felt, he didn't push her on her feelings either. Which left her where she was before, not discussing, not dealing. And as long as she doesn't discuss, doesn't deal, doesn't acknowledge what is happening between her and Damon -- his feelings, her feelings, their actions that result from those feelings -- she can continue to pretend that they are just friends and that she is not repeating Katherine's pattern of loving both brothers. She can continue to turn to Damon, lean on him for support, argue with him, knowing that he'll have her back in the end no matter what she decides to do, and share their intense moments. All of this she can continue to do as long as they keep things status quo with Damon's love for her the unacknowledged elephant in the room.

However, in that moment, Damon pointed out that elephant in the middle of a SITUATION, and, frankly, it isn't something that he should have done, expressing himself as if he is her boyfriend. There are reasons for acting certain ways (ie, I'm being an overzealous protector because I don't want you to die and I have the right to do that because I love you and I don't want you to die!) that are excused because of the type of relationship you have with someone. The thing here is that as much as Damon would like to be in that kind of relationship with Elena, and as comfortable as he had become in that role of her pseudo-boyfriend (key word being pseudo), he is NOT in that kind of relationship with her. He is not her actual boyfriend, so therefore he doesn't get to say those words without any consequence. Right now, that phrase is too weighted and comes with so much still unsaid between them. An "I love you" spoken as baldly as he did happens when the two parties are in a mutual, I-love-you relationship that is established and set. Damon and Elena are nowhere near that type of relationship at this time. By Damon throwing out the "I love you" as he did as if it were not the giant elephant in the room, he kicked open that complacent stasis they were all in. Which meant that Elena could no longer glide along treating him like just a good friend, with nice words, tender gestures and touches, because he said the words -- with no extenuating circumstances -- it's out there now, and they can't go back to just pretending.

And that is from where her quick, wounding response came. She wasn't thinking; she was reacting to him suddenly pointing to the elephant in the room. Also, she is only eighteen and without much experience. An even more salient point is that since she hasn't admitted, even to herself, how she feels about him, and Damon loves SO fully, heavily and completely ... it was just too much for her to deal with. To have it blurted out like that had to shake her up. And it did, leading her to respond in a less than ideal manner that was so unlike her -- and to be fair, she regretted it immediately. But she said them, those hurtful words that were lacking in Elena's normal warmth and empathy, her understanding and desire for him to feel and own up to his feelings, which is how she has almost always treated him in the past. However, expressing general feelings and sharing is totally different from an 'I love you' directed specifically at her, especially considering their weighted relationship and the fact that his love for her has NEVER been discussed by them. It is the wandering elephant in the room at all times. And he just casually acknowledged it.

In addition, it is quite clear that the last batch of episodes have shown just how deeply she has gotten in with Damon, and now she is trying to backpedal because if he feels secure enough in their relationship to say those words then she must be projecting something ... something more than she's allowed herself to acknowledge. And Elena is afraid of not only feeling that something, but how much of that something she does feel. More than the depth of those feelings is the fact that she has them for Damon at all. There is the fear that she'll become what she very much does not want to be: Another Katherine, toying with the affections of both Salvatore brothers. Furthermore, it's not even just all of the above. There are a LOT of things at play here. There is a whole list of ISSUES THAT DAMON AND ELENA MUST GET THROUGH BEFORE THEY CAN BE!

For Elena, she's warring with these other fears as well:

1) I can't love two brothers. It's wrong.
2) I can't love Damon. What does that say about me?
3) I said it was Stefan, always, only Stefan! Oops!
4) I said I'd never fall for his brother.

(And we're not even wading into the Damon-shaped issues.)

That's a LOT to get through before an acknowledged 'I love you' could enter the arena in her confused, conflicted mind. And so the empathetic, understanding Elena was just not in the building, despite her past attitude toward him. And this makes perfect sense when you look at the bigger picture. This is an Elena in a situation she's never been in before. She really feels like she shouldn't like, let alone love Damon, because what does that say about her? (See at the top her words from "Disturbing Behavior.") Liking, and, oh boy!, loving Damon would disappoint her parents, and obviously, everyone in her life now. However, who you choose to love is not a choice, it just happens and she's been fighting against that choice for a long time now. So she's constantly at battle within herself, and on top of that, she won't even admit to that battle, which leads to frustration on her part, which then spills onto Damon. Which leads to her not being empathetic and saying hurtful things. In addition, remember, right then, the girl was in a scary place emotionally due to her meeting with Esther, the deal she had just made with her, and the potential fall-out.

And again, I believe that we have to take into account that she is only eighteen, and she's suffered a ridiculous amount of loss in her life. Her last relationship (with Damon's brother!) ended pretty high up there on the list of worst possible ways a relationship can end, and yet there were these crazy, extenuating circumstances that still come into play. Plus, there are all of those issues she has that I listed above. And look, here's yet another huge factor that explains her less than rational response: It's Damon. He arouses her passions, he confuses her, frustrates her, makes her feel things that she doesn't understand and so she lashes out and says mean things, unthinking things. We went through a very difficult road with Damon last season and now we are at such a better place with him. I genuinely believe that that is what is happening with Elena. She's not perfect, and I love that; she's a screwed-up teenager who is going to mess up big time, but she will grow, she will get better ... just as Damon has done.

~ Elena ignoring EVERYTHING that Stefan has done and begging him to FEEL something.

The key part of that above sentence is "something" full-stop. Like many, I read this scene initially as Elena begging Stefan to feel something (ie, his love) for her. However, sumeria added another option:
    QUOTE: "... it didn't feel to me "romantic." Elena's been going through some rough shit. Shit that I imagine she wishes she didn't have to feel/think about *all the time.* She said that she's been trying not to feel, and it's not working. It felt to me like her trying to empathize with where he is, and trying to reach out to a friend that she doesn't want to see destroy himself forever."
I think this interpretation makes a LOT of sense. (It's also the exact same impression that my sister -- a casual viewer -- came to when she watched the episode.) Remember, Elena used similar words that Lexi did when trying to get through to Stefan in "Ghost World." Also, I recalled -- and this is key for a show that loves its parallels -- Elena did the EXACT same thing to Damon when she was trying to get through to him in "Homecoming" (the hands-on-the-face move), and she wasn't trying to be romantic with him. She was trying to a be a good friend and get through his pain to his better nature. It was almost the same thing here. The differences? (a) With Damon and Elena, the gazes of both characters found themselves locked on the other's lips and the camera lingered on those moments, and (b) it worked with Damon; it didn't with Stefan. So if that is a parallel (and I certainly flashed back to that "Homecoming" scene when Elena was talking to Stefan using that same hands-on-the-face move), well, Damon = 1, Stefan = 0 because with Damon, that move and those doe-eyes worked.

That Elena was only thinking of Stefan as a friend, someone that she needed to help find themselves as opposed to wanting to *be* with him, really did bear itself out in the following episode, "All My Children." Honestly, it truly felt to me like Stefan was an afterthought in relation to Elena (and for Elena) except from Damon's point of view. Initially, I thought that the opening song was about the Stefan/Elena pairing, and that Elena was moody and restless when she awoke because she was thinking about Stefan since the phone call (reluctantly made) was to him. However, what followed made it clear that the song, Elena's mood, even Elena's phone call to Stefan was all about Damon.

She had called Damon several times (ten to be exact!), and the point was made that we knew how many times, whereas there was just the one call to Stefan -- and since he'd taken her home the night before, she knew that he was fine, so therefore, yes, she was calling him about Damon. After all, we know it wasn't about the Esther plan or her guilt over involving Elijah because she mentioned that the night before. Why I'm so sure that it was about Damon specifically is because she didn't say what she needed to talk to him about, and then there was her reluctance to call him. Her ex-boyfriend. Who knows that she kissed his brother, something that she pretty much said she would never do. And she's going to call said ex-boyfriend to tell him she's worried about said brother that she admitted to kissing?! With all of the crazy that Stefan is going through right now, would she really want to risk setting off some new trigger? Definitely not. So, I do believe indubitably that she was phoning him only because she hadn't been able to get through to Damon.

Now, let's take a step back. Perhaps you don't buy that it was non-romantic with Stefan, and you still believe that she was trying to get him to feel something for her. Don't worry, I've got an angle in play for that as well that makes sense and is perfectly in character. As previously stated, Elena is, first and foremost, a denial-girl. This was established in the Pilot. She stood in front of the mirror and practiced her denial speech. Elena is especially denial-girl when it comes to Stefan. She doesn't know him truly, not all of him, and she hasn't fully accepted this fact yet. Stefan, as of late, has mostly been a complete asshole to her, but it appears that for her that jerk!Stefan is not her Stefan, and as such she has separated them in her mind, and she has also done so in her heart. Therefore, all of the horrible things that he has done, she is simply not holding against him because jerk!Stefan isn't her Stefan. (Denial-girl is also very good at selective reasoning.)

Tonight for the first time, she saw signs of her Stefan. Going back to "The Ties That Bind," while I don't believe that Elena told Stefan that she kissed Damon to make him jealous and get him back, (I do think that she genuinely was trying to be honest and up-front as well as other reasons listed above), it's definitely feasible that she wanted to get a reaction out of him. Something, anything. She wanted him to feel (per Lexi). However, she didn't get one ... at least to her knowledge. But we know now that her telling him did lead Stefan to choose (likely a subconscious thing) to open himself up again to be more the Stefan of before: The Stefan that she loves and believes in and has rose-colored glasses on when she looks at him (so that she doesn't look at Damon). And again, in this episode, it was the first time that she saw that Stefan, her Stefan, as the evening progressed,. So that girl that blindly loved him saw a chance to recapture the happy euphoria of pretense amidst the crazy that she had shared with him not so long ago, and she went for it. Because at least when everyone that she loved was being threatened, she could escape into the cocoon of this pretend-world that she and Stefan had created out of their idealistic love. Now, all she has to escape to is this ever-spiraling, confusing, frustrating, intense thing with Damon that she is quite simply incapable of giving name to right now.

Elena is only eighteen. I keep saying that, but it is a very real variable that should not be forgotten when assessing the (negative) whys and wherefores of her actions. Add to that, Stefan is her first real love (with Matt being a trial-run, by all accounts, for her) and they didn't just break up. They were ripped apart (by Stefan's choices, but still), and so the chance to get back her Stefan, and also get back to that bright spot in her life is completely understandable. I don't like it and I certainly don't want it. I much prefer my strong, awesome, kick-ass Elena -- the young woman that she is when not with Stefan -- but it does make logical, character-based sense. And even if they did go back there with Stefan and Elena, there is no way that things would simply fall back into place as they were.

Finally, (again) with regards to her age, to Stefan and how it appears that this season is playing out ... at eighteen, Elena is now older than Stefan in terms of living life (as opposed to undead life). There was a big 'Elena is growing up' theme to the premiere episode; she's becoming an adult. She's growing up. Stefan CAN'T grow up. He's eternally a 17-year old boy -- I believe that the vampire mythology on the show is that their personality is based on their respective death age when turned and that that essence never changes. So Stefan won't change, not his essence, not how he approaches life (and love) in general. However, Elena will.

She will grow up. Not only her essence and approach to life, but also in the way that all of us can still grow: In accepting all parts of yourself (as Stefan needs to do). In season 02, Damon showed that type of growth. I believe that that is what we are seeing happen with Elena this season. But remember, Damon also regressed, two steps forward, a few more steps back, etc. and so on because that's how growth (that eventually sticks) generally works. Right now, with regards to Stefan (mostly from the point of view that she is trying to re-ignite his love for her, even to a small degree), she's regressing, trying to hold onto to her firmly defined definitions of black and white. I'm not particularly fond of some of the ways this regression is playing out, but I wasn't particularly fond of those bits with Damon either. Still, it was necessary for him to get to where he is now ... in a much better, more stable, more understanding place. We are getting a variation of this growth with Elena (as it applies to not just spiritual, theoretical, fundamental growth, but also experiencing growth through the passage of your life as your body, mind and heart age naturally).

~ But Elena was cruel to Damon.

Upon reflection, I don't see where Elena has been cruel, or even mean, to Damon at all. Damon casually threw out the "I love you" in the middle of manhandling her, controlling her (yes, out of fear, but still), while she was in the middle of a whole new emotional tizzy, still reeling with the fact that she had just betrayed Damon in a way which did upset her (as seen by her final look towards his snapped-neck form), and she had just walked into a potential death trap. Also, she had just found out that her blood would be personally responsible for killing quite a few more people than she intended beyond the one, including a guy who had been fairly good to her amidst all of the crazy. So she basically said "OH MY GOD! DAMON, I CAN'T HANDLE THIS!" but less shouty, and not as tactfully worded. It was frustration and confusion coming out without thinking of what she was saying. The bottom-line is that Elena was in no place to deal with the intense, passionate Damon of it all just then.

And that tension had been building up since even before the ball invitation had arrived. roselani pointed out that the scene where Elena received was the first time that Elena had strategy-discussed with both Salvatore brothers acting (fairly) normal since season 02's "The Last Dance" (three episodes shy of a full season order of 22 episodes ago). So with Stefan once more acting more like the Stefan of old, the dynamic between Damon and Elena reverted back to pre-season 03 interaction. No more discussing things, working them out, compromising ("Smells Like Teen Spirit, "Ordinary People," "The New Deal," and "Our Town") Elena using his weakness for her ("The Hybrid" in the lake, anyone?), Elena trusting Damon enough to take herself completely out of play for her safety ("Homecoming").

Instead, Elena found herself trying to play mediator, and, to a slight degree, deferring to Stefan because that was how it had always played out before. And perhaps she wouldn't have done so, had Damon not immediately fallen back into playing one-ups-manship with his brother, and throwing sarcastic quips out as a shield to show that it didn't bother him that it felt like them against him. With Stefan back in the equation, it makes perfect sense that, naturally, they would just fall back into previous patterns of behavior, with the main difference being the walking on eggshells act they are all participating in: Stefan and Damon due to the whole 'Being in Love with Elena/Kissing Elena' thing, Stefan and Elena due to the whole 'Ripper!Stefan/Compelled-No!Not-Compelled/Wickery Bridge/Kissing Damon' thing, Damon and Elena due to the whole 'Kissing/Growing Closer/She's Stefan's Girl and He's Back!' thing.

And this goes along with how Elena behaved at the ball, going to Stefan behind Damon's back because, like clockwork, she fell back into old patterns because it was easier than creating a new dynamic between the three because that would mean acknowledging that things have definitely changed with her and Damon, and she's not ready to admit that yet. Then, of course, her going behind his back is what led to Damon handling things as he did (or rather manhandling Elena). Just as she didn't attempt to work with him, convince him and come up with a compromise together, neither did he attempt to do those things with her. Instead, he jumped straight back into anger, lashing out, wild eyes and trying to force her to listen to him. That is not how things have been with them throughout most of this season, but with Stefan -- much more similar to the Stefan they've known -- back in the picture, it played havoc with their new dynamic, and neither acted as best as they could and had been.

Finally, with regards to her phone conversation with Damon where she told him to "get over it," it didn't bother me even upon my first watch-through because, in all fairness, let's be honest ... when it's Damon about Elena, he ALWAYS gets over it, like that! She's just going with what she knows. And she knows that with Damon, she can let her less-than-angelic-nature out and he won't take offense or judge her for it. Because she knows that he loves her ... just the way she is (Petrova-side and all.)

~ In Conclusion ... (And if you've read all of this, bravo! Grab yourself a cookie!)

Once more for the road ... Elena is growing up. "The Birthday" was about Elena turning eighteen, becoming an adult, and that doesn't just happen overnight with a number change. She's learning, but she's going to screw up; she is screwing up. Part of that is how she reacts to those in her life that she trusts implicitly, that she can completely be herself with without being judged (which is basically Damon at this point because everyone else who fits the other categories would judge her for her feelings for Damon). However, because she has that safety net of complete assurance with Damon, she is beginning to not hold back with him. And, of course, it's starting out on the negative side of things, but eventually, we will get the positive output as well. We absolutely will. For now, though, that negative output falls in line with her recent lack of empathy for Damon despite the fact that she is normally so empathetic to everyone. "Everyone" is the key word because Damon no longer fits in that category; he's in one all on his own. Damon arouses her passions, he confuses her, frustrates her, makes her feel things that she doesn't understand and so she lashes out and says mean things, unthinking things ... because with him, she can. It's all in character, and it's all part of the process of growing up, of learning who she is and who she will allow herself to be, and with whom she will allow herself to be her whole self.

With that growth, there are going to be missteps and screw-ups. Damon's involved killing random people; Elena's involve breaking Damon's heart. But they have to be building to a better, morally gray both of them since we are seeing Damon as "good" as he's going to get. Now Elena needs to basically get a little "worse" before she can be equal with him. It's the only thing that makes sense when you look at the series, and especially this season, as a whole instead of these two episodes. Co-executive producer Julie Plec stated that Elena will make a choice before season's end, and while it obviously could be Stefan or Elena could choose neither, I do think it's going to be Damon because where is the story if she chooses Stefan that isn't either a repeat of their initial love story, or a repeat of Elena's story with Damon over the past two seasons (vampire gone bad, his love for Elena helps to push him to be better).* And as of "All My Children," Elena doesn't have the choice of either, and it appears as if she will be without both brothers for a bit longer. Therefore ... she chooses Damon, and in order for that choice to make sense to viewers who aren't Damon/Elena fans or haters (the former, of course it makes sense! the latter, never will it make sense!), Elena needs to be in a position where she's no longer defining her life by black and white, good and bad. And we are getting there.

* ETA: After the season, and she chose Stefan, sorta -- but it will be a new dynamic because Elena is now a vampire. Fingers crossed she did enough growing up in this season to be at the mature-level she needs to be once she starts accepting reality. :)

Just as we did with Damon. This is the same pattern, it seems, as last season. Damon seemed to be getting better, doing better and then boom! he would do something awful and Damon-fans lamented CAN'T HE EVER WIN!?, and then by the end of the season, he had made some hard realizations, and owned up to the truth. And now, while others are taking longer to catch up (because of all the bad that he did do before), we, as viewers, know that he has held onto that growth big-time, and if no one else is taking much note of it, Elena has. Yes, despite the last few episodes, it's still very clear that she does indeed like Damon, very much, just the way he is. She just needs to own up to that truth beyond when he's on his deathbed.

Plec also stated that "[Damon and Elena] have got some tension that they've got to work through as we get deeper into the season. Elena is ultimately in the position of asking herself, "How do I feel about each of these brothers, and who do I want to be with?'" What happened in these two episodes was the first real step getting to that point, I believe. Elena and Damon were doing well, maintaining their friendship and their closeness, but still keeping the kiss in a bubble atop that elephant that is not discussed, and then "Dangerous Liaisons" happened. That shook her up so much that in "All My Children," we got her reaction of jealousy, of anger and of hurt. And now, after what happened in that episode, I have no doubt that we will continue to see the fall-out. It has all been building up to that exploration of Elena's feelings about the brothers, and especially her feelings for Damon. However, it's not going to all happen in one fell swoop (or rather, in one or two episodes). It is just as Kevin Williamson told Ian Somerhalder: This is not a one-act play, a novel, or a two-hour movie. This is a journey of one hundred episodes and counting.

To see that this is where we've been heading all along, we only need to look at one scene from early on in the season. The only time thus far that Elena has come even close to truly talking about her feelings for Damon was in her final scene with Caroline in "Disturbing Behavior." As quoted at the top, when Caroline called Elena out on the fact that Damon had gotten under her skin, and Elena admitted that she couldn't go there because of what it would say about her, these were the lyrics (from The Civil Twilight's "Human") that played specifically from her denial to the look shared between Elena and Caroline before Caroline noticed her father.
    What is this I feel? Why is it so real?
    What am I to say?
    It's only love, it's only pain
    It's only fear that runs through my veins ...
Exactly.

(Thanks to linsell_farm for the read-through, and vanimy whose back and forth helped inspire this.)
 
 
 
sassy, classy, and a bit smart-assy: TVD: Damon MF psychobadboy_fangirl on February 28th, 2012 11:29 pm (UTC)
I'm glad you posted this because I was thinking about the whole thing just yesterday after seeing some shippers who are in the depths of despair--and it made me wonder if I'm just clueless and should be more worried about my ship. I'm not, however, and I feel like the trajectory as you outline here shows us just where it's leading. And obviously as a show sold on the "triangular" relationships of Damon/Elena/Stefan, as viewers we have to understand that she's always going to be torn between these two ideals (Denial with Stefan because it's easier or Truth with Damon that says something possibly negative about her in some way) for the duration of the show. In the end, I certainly hope she will choose Damon, and I feel like she will, that that's where all this is leading (That what we've been doing here means something).

The other item of interest to me is that Damon and Elena's arguments are becoming more and more about the relationship that she won't acknowledge they are in--you say here that Damon shouldn't have behaved how he did because he isn't Elena's boyfriend, and that's true, logistically speaking. But as we can all see, their relationship has progressed--has turned into something greater and deeper than friendship, because Elena's reaction to Damon sleeping with Rebekah wasn't just one of outrage (she just tried to kill me!). The two things I loved most about their exchange was her understanding of Damon (you did this to lash out at me) and then when he denies it in his normal Damon-fashion, she asks in a plaintive tone "Why are you doing this?" It's that moment that reminds me more than anything how much younger Elena is, how much she has not yet experienced, how she has not had her romantic heart broken by betrayal before, and so despite her understanding the way Damon operates doesn't necessarily equate in her mind to the way a man in love sometimes handles rejection. The best thing Damon can do now is make her come to him. He has to be the one who separates.

It really fills me with GLEE, imagining how it might play out, what awaits us when the show returns for six glorious more episodes. I'm fully prepared to be scorched to my dermis, and I can't wait!
Arabian: Elena05arabian on February 29th, 2012 12:47 am (UTC)
I'm glad you posted this because I was thinking about the whole thing just yesterday after seeing some shippers who are in the depths of despair--and it made me wonder if I'm just clueless and should be more worried about my ship.

There are soooooo many who are so depressed and bummed about it, and I'm all ... I don't get it, I don't get it. I could after "Dangerous Liaisons," sure, but "All My Children" so clearly set up what the point was of DL, and it was all about setting up Elena HAVING TO DEAL WITH HER DAMON-SHAPED FEELINGS!

I'm not, however, and I feel like the trajectory as you outline here shows us just where it's leading.

Yup, and what's interesting is that I do think that the show telegraphed it in that "Disturbing Behavior" scene. My original post had nothing about that, it was all written, just waiting for my final edits that I was planning on doing today. Then when I woke up this morning, my D/E sleep mix was on "Human" and those lyrics were playing and I was like "OH!" And I watched the scenes, and which lyrics played during their specific Damon-related dialogue and I was all "OHH!!!!" It's just so perfect ... you know, as if it was all planned. ;)

And obviously as a show sold on the "triangular" relationships of Damon/Elena/Stefan, as viewers we have to understand that she's always going to be torn between these two ideals (Denial with Stefan because it's easier or Truth with Damon that says something possibly negative about her in some way) for the duration of the show. In the end, I certainly hope she will choose Damon, and I feel like she will, that that's where all this is leading

Yup. And it's not just Elena, it's Damon and Stefan also who have to find and truly deal with their truths. At this point, Damon is the farthest on his way, but he still has a road to go.

(That what we've been doing here means something).

WHEE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The other item of interest to me is that Damon and Elena's arguments are becoming more and more about the relationship that she won't acknowledge they are in--you say here that Damon shouldn't have behaved how he did because he isn't Elena's boyfriend, and that's true, logistically speaking. But as we can all see, their relationship has progressed--has turned into something greater and deeper than friendship, because Elena's reaction to Damon sleeping with Rebekah wasn't just one of outrage (she just tried to kill me!).

Exactly. Elena turned around and did exactly what Damon had done. She treated his actions (as he responded in words) as if they were in *that* kind of relationship. Whereas Damon presumed to just throw the "I love you" out there, Elena presumed that Damon slept with Rebekah to hurt her and make her jealous. In both cases, the words and actions of couple.

The two things I loved most about their exchange was her understanding of Damon (you did this to lash out at me) and then when he denies it in his normal Damon-fashion, she asks in a plaintive tone "Why are you doing this?"

Yup, she didn't care about who Rebekah was, or what she had done. All she was zeroing in on was the fact that despite their relationship (Elena and Damon's relationship), Damon had slept with some other girl. And it hurt!

It's that moment that reminds me more than anything how much younger Elena is, how much she has not yet experienced, how she has not had her romantic heart broken by betrayal before, and so despite her understanding the way Damon operates doesn't necessarily equate in her mind to the way a man in love sometimes handles rejection.

YES! That's why I kept hammering home the point about her age. She is young and lacking in experience that I just can't NOT cut her slack.

The best thing Damon can do now is make her come to him. He has to be the one who separates.

And I do think that is exactly what is going to happen. DOUBLE WHEE!!!!!!!!!!!!

It really fills me with GLEE, imagining how it might play out, what awaits us when the show returns for six glorious more episodes. I'm fully prepared to be scorched to my dermis, and I can't wait!

I'll be sitting there unable to wait right along with you!

(Do you think I should post this at Bloodstream?)
(no subject) - badboy_fangirl on February 29th, 2012 04:10 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - arabian on February 29th, 2012 10:44 pm (UTC) (Expand)
x5valex5vale on February 29th, 2012 09:14 am (UTC)
Kudos.

This is brilliant. I wish I could have more time and dissect this so that I could comment better but I can't, so yeah..basically I agree with pretty much everything.

I think that while Elena is growing up and she is becoming a woman ( and yes at 18 years old is normal to think that you are the center of the universe), Stefan is still stuck in a limbo where he doesn't accept who he really is. Stefan needs some self acceptance and to forgive himself. I still think the show should address better the fact that he killed his father and all the consenquences from that moment.

Damon is the one who's growing up faster, he's doing a journey and he has changed. Not actually changed, because his human essence is all there, but he is finding his way to re-discover his human nature and to deal with who he is.

As for the call to Stefan, I think Elena called him basically because she wasn't able to reach out for Damon, but also because she wanted to hear him. She is not yet to the point where she can let go the hope to have her Stefan back. She will eventually, but it's not now..exactly like it's not now she can't be with Damon (plus but this is just me, I don't really want Damon and Elena be the endgame of this season. I want them to be together when both of them will have grown up a little more).
Arabian: Damon01arabian on February 29th, 2012 09:41 am (UTC)
[Error: Irreparable invalid markup ('<i.>') in entry. Owner must fix manually. Raw contents below.]

<I.>I don't really want Damon and Elena be the endgame of this season. I want them to be together when both of them will have grown up a little more). </i>

Damon and Elena not being the endgame this season isn't fair, really, though to Damon/Elena fans. Stefan/Elena fans had two full seasons of their couple, it really is only fair for Damon/Elena to at least have theirs (and the timing of this period -- this season -- of transition makes sense.) Of course, I think that it will eventually lead to Damon/Elena period and that Stefan/Elena but for moments and lingering feelings are done. I could be wrong, but we'll see. As for them needing to grow, I'd prefer to think that the rest of their growing up will be something they do together, growing together.
(no subject) - x5vale on February 29th, 2012 09:56 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - arabian on February 29th, 2012 10:48 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - x5vale on March 1st, 2012 10:11 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - arabian on March 1st, 2012 09:03 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - x5vale on March 2nd, 2012 10:56 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - arabian on March 5th, 2012 09:13 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - x5vale on March 6th, 2012 09:05 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - arabian on March 6th, 2012 04:54 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - x5vale on March 7th, 2012 10:16 am (UTC) (Expand)
(Deleted comment)
Arabian: Damon & Elena16arabian on March 1st, 2012 11:00 pm (UTC)
Ah, see, I'm one of the few who isn't a huge Buffy fan. I loved the first two seasons, but it started to fall apart a bit for me after that, really losing me in 5th season. But overall, it was a wonderful show, I just don't connect it or view it in conjunction or comparison with TVD at all. (A) I do think that TVD is better (I know, true blasphemy!), and (b) the vampires, the world, the mythology are just so very different that I can't compare.

But I'm glad that this made sense to you in terms of where Elena is coming from, and how the future for Damon/Elena is not as bleak as many D/E fans are making it out to be now. :)
Azmiri Sultana Mridul: pic#116061937mridul777 on March 2nd, 2012 05:09 pm (UTC)
I wanna say that... a few moments back (before coming in here and reading it.. sorry late-comer :P ).. I sorta typed in the exactly similar response you wrote here, to a friend of mine, whose name... coincidentally happens to be Jenn as well... ;D ... and who was fuming because she was mad at Elena.

See I completely agree with you. Truth be told, her only fault here is that she's a huge denial girl and that she's constantly trying to sweep her conflicitng feelings regarding Damon under the rug, coz facing them is difficult. Much like facing the fact that Stefan was a merciless RIpper was difficult for her so she conjured up the image of him torubled and in need of her assistance. And moreover she's not exactly IN LOVE with Damon. So she doesn't really owe him anything.
The sudden confession after a heated moment of fight overwhelmed her. Plus everyone and their dog knows about Damon loving Elena but hoenstly, Elena has heard it only couple of times, not 1 of which was a good moment. One was said and compelled to forget, the other while he was in deathbed, so it was already a painful memory and now in a moment of utter fight and disapproval he spurted out the words.... so she acted out of wits and later tried to mask it with indifference and action mode. Again DENIAL... I know it is a total crapy thing for her... but can't really blame her. She's 18 and for that age she's doing a much better job than anyone normal.

And about Damon acting as if he was her pseudo boyfriend. I mean, he's gonna act that way. It's sort of a given. It's Damon. Plus all those months of trying to save Stefan and being alone with Elena (minus Stefan that is) has gotten them closer than usual so now the gelling between them is different. He thinks it's normal for him to act all "I am your sole guardian angel" on her, since he's been sorta like that for all those months.

Like Stefan is acting all petty, and lowly and bad mouthing Damon (i.e. how Damon is worse for Elena if Stefan is bad) .. Damon's damage is that, he will continue vying for Elena's affections and flirting and creating those "heated' moments with the girl he loves, even though he gives up on her like every 3rd episode, and even though HE KNOWS that she is technically in a complicated relationship with HIS OWN brother. Poor guy pulled by his heartstrings. :(
He thinks it's normal for him to be all boyfriend-y .. especially since they kissed aka Elena kissed her back. That was sort of a green flag for him. But in all fairness it was wrong because like you said nothing was discussed and talked about. See that's the ROOT OF ALL PROBLEMS NON-SUPERNATURAL. Nobody REALLY talks, until it's danger time.

Yeah I have been mad at Elena, for some time. Especially after 3x14. Never Hated her though.
At 3x15 I felt really bad for her, because like Caroline said that it's soo good that she's saved, but bad things INDEED happened because of her. I mean it wasn't AT ALL her fault and if she had the opportunity she would have taken the fall herself, but doesn't change the fact that people get hurt or die because something regarding Elena.My thoughts are that THIS right here is what Elena always wanted to avoid, the non-selfless portion of being a martyr, where she is blamed for the misfortune of loved ones and is sorta alienated.

So yeah, indeed her harsh words hurt me, her actions and a little stupidity caused me pain, but after some re-thinking I got them. And got them or not I Love The Girl. And Caroline, And Bonnie. But yeah I think this will be a huge motivator for Elena not to let her humanity get in the way, plus she has to maintain her humanity AND act accordingly in a Elena-line manner (so that EVEN IF she doesn't become a Katherine by loving both Salvatore's, she HAS to ensure that she doesn't ALSO become a Katherine by acting differently or mercilessly either) in scenarios and problems coming up ahead.

Oh and Thank You for posting this.

Edited at 2012-03-02 05:11 pm (UTC)
Arabian: Elena07arabian on March 5th, 2012 09:31 pm (UTC)
Elena is a denial girl. Because she was hit with so much trauma at such a young age, this is how she's chosen to cope. Jeremy turned to drugs, and then girls. Elena just went into pretend, pretend, pretend mode to function. And see this is where we differ, I don't think it was crappy. It was as "bad" as Damon choosing to ignore her emotional turmoil and not take into consideration what she was going through there. Neither one was right in the moment, Elena's "wrong" was just harsher.

Like Stefan is acting all petty, and lowly and bad mouthing Damon ... Damon's damage is that, he will continue vying for Elena's affections and flirting and creating those "heated' moments with the girl he loves [...] even though HE KNOWS that she is technically in a complicated relationship with HIS OWN brother.

Thank you! I get so frustrated when people dog Stefan for all the petty commentary, but completely ignore the fact that Damon (as he flat-out told Stefan! Fair and square! Pfft, oh Damon) has been doing his best to make Elena fall for him, while she's still in this thing with Stefan.

He thinks it's normal for him to be all boyfriend-y .. especially since they kissed aka Elena kissed her back. That was sort of a green flag for him. But in all fairness it was wrong because like you said nothing was discussed and talked about. See that's the ROOT OF ALL PROBLEMS NON-SUPERNATURAL. Nobody REALLY talks, until it's danger time.

Yes. ALL OF THIS!
(no subject) - mridul777 on March 6th, 2012 12:52 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - arabian on March 6th, 2012 08:54 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Florenciaflorencia7 on March 3rd, 2012 02:28 pm (UTC)
Due to my RL being hectic I haven't got a chance to read this until today. But I bookmarked this post & was looking forward to reading it for days.

& How happy I am now! You should run workshops for frustrated Delena shippers lol Truly, your insight brings so much comfort & it's just so much joy to follow your analysis. You are so right about everything.

Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts ♥
Arabian: Ian & Nina(PS)07arabian on March 5th, 2012 09:54 pm (UTC)
You should run workshops for frustrated Delena shippers lol Truly, your insight brings so much comfort & it's just so much joy to follow your analysis. You are so right about everything.

I'm glad it helped you. Alas, I know a bunch of frustrated shippers who prefer to assume the worst and just whine and moan ... and I don't get it. When we can back up things in a positive light, why not go for that instead of assuming the worst. If we get screwed, we get screwed, but geez, wait until it happens to assume it's all been a waste of time. Sigh.

Sorry, I got hit hard in a few places. :(

Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts ♥

You're welcome, and I'm glad I was able to cheer you up about it. :)
Olga: TVD | D/E | 3x09 | Mirror.dreamingahead on March 4th, 2012 12:18 am (UTC)
Thank you for putting this post together. I really enjoyed reading it, and it's definitely given me lots to think about. I especially like your take on why Elena reacted to Damon's "I love you" the way she did, how it was a matter of bad timing & their different levels of comfort with each other in terms of being able to say/hear those words. Also, really loved the idea that Elena separates jerk!Stefan from her!Stefan, which is why it's no wonder for her that jerk!Stefan is capable of certain things she would never dream of her!Stefan doing for her. You know how big an issue I have with this, and this explanation definitely helps me understand Elena's actions better. Finally, absolutely agree on Elena having some further growing to do emotionally before she can be with Damon - and accept that it's okay that a relationship with him is something she wants.

<3
Arabian: DE & Stefan01arabian on March 5th, 2012 10:05 pm (UTC)
Thank you for putting this post together. I really enjoyed reading it, and it's definitely given me lots to think about.

Yay!! I really was bummed that you were negative about what was going on (especially with the MK/Revenge mess).

I especially like your take on why Elena reacted to Damon's "I love you" the way she did, how it was a matter of bad timing & their different levels of comfort with each other in terms of being able to say/hear those words.

That is something that really struck me, after I calmed down. Where their relationship is, you just don't say THE words as if it's no big.

Also, really loved the idea that Elena separates jerk!Stefan from her!Stefan, which is why it's no wonder for her that jerk!Stefan is capable of certain things she would never dream of her!Stefan doing for her. You know how big an issue I have with this, and this explanation definitely helps me understand Elena's actions better.

To me, it's the only thing that makes sense. And it totally fits with Elena's character issues of denial and pretense.

Finally, absolutely agree on Elena having some further growing to do emotionally before she can be with Damon - and accept that it's okay that a relationship with him is something she wants.

And I do believe we're getting there this season. I do, I do. :)
rose_marie_roserose_marie_rose on March 4th, 2012 08:13 am (UTC)
Part 1 of 2

It always makes me so warm and squishy inside when I see a post defending Elena. She's my favorite, and she gets way too much hate in fandom. I don't understand it, I WILL NEVER UNDERSTAND. This is going to be crazy long response, so I apologize ahead of time.

So for all that everyone and their dog knows how Damon feels about Elena, it is not talked about. It truly is the elephant in the room; everyone tiptoes around it except for an occasional prod here or there. It's a fact, but it's an unspoken fact. And because it's treated as such, Elena can live in denial-land and do what she does best when she doesn't want to deal with consequences and that is pretend, pretend, pretend.

This is so beyond true, I love it.

And as long as she doesn't discuss, doesn't deal, doesn't acknowledge what is happening between her and Damon -- his feelings, her feelings, their actions that result from those feelings -- she can continue to pretend that they are just friends and that she is not repeating Katherine's pattern of loving both brothers. She can continue to turn to Damon, lean on him for support, argue with him, knowing that he'll have her back in the end no matter what she decides to do, and share their intense moments.

I love this too. So much of Elena's hesitancy regarding Damon is wrapped up in this, in her desire to not be Katherine. Which I totally understand, and it's part of why Elena's so wonderful, and why she's not the typical wishy-washy, torn-between-two men female protagonist. I feel like a lot of her overall show journey is going to be realizing that Katherine's right, it's ok to love them both, and her finding out what that means for her and how it can be a good thing, not the unhealthy, manipulative, life-ruining situation that Katherine created way back when with Damon and Stefan. History doesn't have to be repeated, and Elena can make her own destiny.

There are reasons for acting certain ways (ie, I'm being an overzealous protector because I don't want you to die and I have the right to do that because I love you and I don't want you to die!) that are excused because of the type of relationship you have with someone. The thing here is that as much as Damon would like to be in that kind of relationship with Elena, and as comfortable as he had become in that role of her pseudo-boyfriend (key word being pseudo), he is NOT in that kind of relationship with her. He is not her actual boyfriend, so therefore he doesn't get to say those words without any consequence. Right now, that phrase is too weighted and comes with so much still unsaid between them. An "I love you" spoken as baldly as he did happens when the two parties are in a mutual, I-love-you relationship that is established and set. Damon and Elena are nowhere near that type of relationship at this time.

THIS. All of this.

An even more salient point is that since she hasn't admitted, even to herself, how she feels about him, and Damon loves SO fully, heavily and completely ... it was just too much for her to deal with.

Yes, exactly. Being loved by Damon Salvatore, with the way he dives so completely into it, is a crazy crazy thing.
Arabian: Katherine01arabian on March 5th, 2012 10:18 pm (UTC)
It always makes me so warm and squishy inside when I see a post defending Elena. She's my favorite, and she gets way too much hate in fandom.

She's not my favorite, but she is my second favorite, and I do adore her.

I don't understand it, I WILL NEVER UNDERSTAND.

I do understand it, but I still am disheartened by it. It truly saddens me how (likely because the fandom is comprised of mostly females), viewers will go out of their way to excuse any negative behavior from Damon and/or Stefan (something I do for both of them at times too, obviously more for Damon because I'm a Damon-stan, duh!), but won't do the same for the female in the equation. Elena has so many awesome wonderful qualities, but she's not perfect and that's okay! It doesn't take away from the awesome she does possess.

This is going to be crazy long response, so I apologize ahead of time.

Never apologize for being wordy with me, LOL! (This post was almost 5,000 words!)

RE: "And as long as she doesn't discuss [...] she can continue to pretend that they are just friends and that she is not repeating Katherine's pattern of loving both brothers ..."

So much of Elena's hesitancy regarding Damon is wrapped up in this, in her desire to not be Katherine.


If nothing else, this is the key thing that drives Elena to NOT GO THERE with Damon. How more people don't get that is beyond me honestly.

I feel like a lot of her overall show journey is going to be realizing that Katherine's right, it's ok to love them both, and her finding out what that means for her and how it can be a good thing, not the unhealthy, manipulative, life-ruining situation that Katherine created way back when with Damon and Stefan. History doesn't have to be repeated, and Elena can make her own destiny.

I agree; I've thought since the beginning of this season that we're going to find out that Elena is instrumental in both of these boys lives in healing and brining them together through her love, as opposed to how Katherine tore them apart. For Elena, because she cares so much and she isn't playing them, like she told Damon that it was his love that would save Stefan, I think we will get some similar type of convo with Stefan where Damon's love for him is referenced. It's not about boy boys loving Elena, it's about Elena helping both boys to admit and accept and acknowledge that they love each other, and it's because she has loved them both and wants them to be happy that she sees that. And because of her relationship with each of them, she can say that to both and hopefully help them get there.

Being loved by Damon Salvatore, with the way he dives so completely into it, is a crazy crazy thing.

Yes, it's very different from what she had with Matt, and Stefan. I do keep going back to the Pilot and how Elena talked about their being no passion with Matt, and that's what she was looking for. And intentional or not, it's never really been there with Stefan ... but it has been there almost from moment one (in some fashion) with Damon.
rose_marie_roserose_marie_rose on March 4th, 2012 08:15 am (UTC)
Part 2 of 2

In addition, it is quite clear that the last batch of episodes have shown just how deeply she has gotten in with Damon, and now she is trying to backpedal because if he feels secure enough in their relationship to say those words then she must be projecting something ... something more than she's allowed herself to acknowledge.

This is extremely insightful. Elena is starting to realize that this thing between her and Damon has been building and building without her even realizing it, and the time is coming that she's going to have to deal with it and her feelings.

She's not perfect, and I love that; she's a screwed-up teenager who is going to mess up big time

So true. And that's what I love about her, that she's flawed and real and wonderful.

She was trying to a be a good friend and get through his pain to his better nature. It was almost the same thing here.

That's exactly how I viewed it. That moment was infused with their romantic history, especially because Elena was finally seeing signs of "her" Stefan again in that episode, but at it's core, that's how I saw it: she loves him as a friend/person, and she wants him to dig himself out of this hole he's living in.

the scene where Elena received was the first time that Elena had strategy-discussed with both Salvatore brothers acting (fairly) normal since season 02's "The Last Dance" (three episodes shy of a full season order of 22 episodes ago). So with Stefan once more acting more like the Stefan of old, the dynamic between Damon and Elena reverted back to pre-season 03 interaction...Elena found herself trying to play mediator...With Stefan back in the equation, it makes perfect sense that, naturally, they would just fall back into previous patterns of behavior, with the main difference being the walking on eggshells act they are all participating in: Stefan and Damon due to the whole 'Being in Love with Elena/Kissing Elena' thing, Stefan and Elena due to the whole 'Ripper!Stefan/Compelled-No!Not-Compelled/Wickery Bridge/Kissing Damon' thing, Damon and Elena due to the whole 'Kissing/Growing Closer/She's Stefan's Girl and He's Back!' thing

YES. I felt the same way about that scene, but I couldn't find a way to articulate it, so thank you so much for this. It almost reminded me of "Smells Like Teen Spirit," with all of it's turned-on-it's-head callbacks to the pilot, because the scene was so familiar, with Damon/Elena/Stefan strategizing together about the crazy situation of the moment, except everything about their dynamics has changed. And without the three of them acknowledging that and working through what those changes mean, things are gonna stay crazy awkward.

And now, while others are taking longer to catch up (because of all the bad that he did do before), we, as viewers, know that he has held onto that growth big-time, and if no one else is taking much note of it, Elena has. Yes, despite the last few episodes, it's still very clear that she does indeed like Damon, very much, just the way he is. She just needs to own up to that truth beyond when he's on his deathbed.

Ha! Amen to this.
Arabian: Katherine03arabian on March 5th, 2012 10:18 pm (UTC)
Elena is starting to realize that this thing between her and Damon has been building and building without her even realizing it, and the time is coming that she's going to have to deal with it and her feelings.

Exactly! And I think that is actually the purpose and point of what happened in episodes 14 and 15 ... to push her to that point because, again, denial-girl, she NEEDS a push.

That's exactly how I viewed it. That moment was infused with their romantic history, especially because Elena was finally seeing signs of "her" Stefan again in that episode, but at it's core, that's how I saw it: she loves him as a friend/person, and she wants him to dig himself out of this hole he's living in.

Exactly! And apparently Julie Plec commented somewhere that people seeing a romantic intention on her part were misinterpreting the scene.

It almost reminded me of "Smells Like Teen Spirit," with all of it's turned-on-it's-head callbacks to the pilot, because the scene was so familiar, with Damon/Elena/Stefan strategizing together about the crazy situation of the moment, except everything about their dynamics has changed. And without the three of them acknowledging that and working through what those changes mean, things are gonna stay crazy awkward.

Yes. And that's why we had all the off-ness between Damon and Elena because DAMON doesn't pretend very well, whereas Elena and Stefan do so it was easier for them to play those roles.
(no subject) - rose_marie_rose on March 6th, 2012 05:18 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - arabian on March 6th, 2012 08:59 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Heather-Ann: DE The End of the Affairlinsell_farm on March 8th, 2012 02:48 am (UTC)
I'm late to the party (as usual), but you know I've been lacking in sufficient hours each day lately ;)

It's a fact, but it's an unspoken fact.
Exactly, and this was a key point that I failed to remember upon first viewing. I'm much happier now that I've come to my senses and gave Elena a break.

All of this she can continue to do as long as they keep things status quo with Damon's love for her the unacknowledged elephant in the room.
Precisely. She is determined to be able to stay in denial until she feels ready to deal with her feelings (which is a totally understandable position for most 18 year olds). Damon actually speaking those words threw a major monkey wrench in the works.

it's out there now, and they can't go back to just pretending.
Right and the way it came out felt very in-character for Damon IMO.

She wasn't thinking; she was reacting to him suddenly pointing to the elephant in the room
ITA. Her reaction makes total sense when you think about everything that was going on inside her at that moment.

And so the empathetic, understanding Elena was just not in the building
So true, and ITA with your list of Elena issues :)

The idea that Elena was reaching out to Stefan to help her friend get back to feeling something makes complete sense to me. She really does not want him denying his humanity for an indefinite period of time. Of course she cares about him, she always will, but caring does not mean she wants to get back together with him. Excellent parallel with her hands-on-face move & doe eyes that worked with Damon but not with Stefan.

ITA that Elena's reaction was not mean or cruel. It was in keeping with her inability to deal with intense, passionate Damon in the midst of the insanity of that whole situation. It makes complete sense to me that the 3 of them would fall back into past behaviours with Elena going behind Damon's back to get Stefan's help. Their reactions were different because of the changed dynamic between them (which none are prepared to admit to ATM). I never did take offense to Elena's "Get over it" for exactly the reason you pointed out. When it comes to her, Damon consistently does just that - post haste.

I just adore that Damon is now in his own category in Elena's life. She is allowing herself to be her whole self with him and no one else. I feel hopeful that by the time she actually makes her choice, it will be Damon. <3