Bonnie and Clyde: A Toxic Love Not To Be Romanticized

Chances are, you've heard their names. Very few of you might know actual rumors about who they were and what they did — and even less know the facts behind the legend of Bonnie Parker and Clyde Barrow.

They are frequently referenced in pop culture for being the ideal romance (a Depression-era "OTP", if you will), but so many things are wrong with that picture. They were not a couple of crazy kids in love. They were not just a pair of lovers that got into a little bit of trouble with the law. They were a prime example of a toxic relationship.

Pictured above with her husband (yes, husband), Roy Thornton, Bonnie Parker met Clyde when she was 19. All throughout their tryst, she was a married woman. Though she and Roy had been separated for several months, they never got divorced. Bonnie died still wearing his wedding ring.

Many people say victims of toxic and/or abusive relationships tend to fall into them repeatedly. This was likely the case with Bonnie and Roy — and then Bonnie and Clyde. Roy was a criminal, like Clyde, who had physically abusive tendencies. He left Bonnie alone for periods of time until finally, it was too much, and their paths never crossed again.

Documented by Blanche Barrow, Clyde's sister-in-law (and fellow member of the Barrow Gang), were several physical fights between the couple. For example: "[Clyde] knocked [Bonnie] across the bedroom a couple of times but she got up and went back for more." Blanche also noted, "[Bonnie and Clyde] loved one another too much to live without each other." Their passionate love did little to erase the physical abuse, however.

Before Clyde, Bonnie never showed an affinity towards crime. She had always been an upstanding citizen. While in school, she was bright and well-behaved. All she wanted was to be an actress or a writer, but her fate allowed little time for either profession. Likely, Clyde persuaded the smitten Bonnie to join him and leave her mother, whom she loved dearly. They did visit Dallas occasionally, it's true, but if he loved her as much as she loved him, he would respect her closeness with her mother. Limiting interaction with family is a sign of an abusive relationship.

From Jay Z to Warren Beatty to Broadway, this infamous pair is constantly made to be a romantic ideal. Young and sexy, they passionately loved each other — but they were not something for a couple to aspire to be. Like Harley Quinn and the Joker, they were wild and in love, but not at all healthy in their romance.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

More on Odyssey

Facebook Comments