The Love that Binds Us OUT NOW
Alex’s character in The Love that Binds Us is vastly different than The Secrets that Kill Us’s Theo. Her character origin did not start at the same time, in fact, Theo’s initial love interest back when they were still Liz was a guy. Theo’s coming out story mirrored my own, so back when I created them they were a cis girl who eventually got a boyfriend. As I began to figure out my own gender and sexuality, I used Theo to explore these things to see what felt right, and that’s when Alex was created.
Initially, Alex was based on my childhood best friend, who I also had a crush on at the time. My own story went very differently than Theo and Alex’s, but my characters took on a life of their own and I didn’t want to change where they ended up. I guess Theo and Alex’s story are kind of what I longed for, but, for me, I don’t think it would’ve worked out anyway.
So Alex became her own entity, and is now vastly different from her origins. She’s become a character that I love for different reasons – her patience with Theo while they struggle with their own mental health and identity, her loyalty to her friends, and the way she stands up for what she believes is right. She can’t and won’t be deterred from using her voice, and I’d like to think that once she’s grown up, she’d become an activist of sorts. She certainly has the makings for it – the team of her and Theo would be a force to be reckoned with.
Alex, like Theo, also mirrors many of my own traits. Her need to please others and excel at what she does comes from me. We both people-please to the point of detriment to ourselves, and it’s something I’m working on, and something that Theo can help Alex with. Theo doesn’t care at all what people think of them, and so watching Theo do what’s best for them in a situation instead of doing what they think will make everyone happy is a huge point of learning for Alex.
Alex, I suppose, is the love interest I wish I had. She has such a degree of patience for Theo, and doesn’t get angry with them when they have a trauma response or when they fail to meet expectations because of their mental health or ability. She loves them, not in spite of, but with their faults. She doesn’t wish they were better at things, or that they were different. She just wants them to feel the best they can, even if they’re not always happy. A calming presence when things get rough, she’s there when she’s needed, but knows when to step away and let Theo figure things out on their own when they need to.
She’s a loving, kind, and gentle soul, and I can’t wait for you all to read her story in The Love that Binds Us, which is out today!