Disney’s newest movie Encanto has taken the world by storm, and with good reason. It is amazing. Encanto follows the life of the Madrigals, a family blessed with gifts which came from a tragic event. Countless people (including myself) say it is their favorite Disney movie of all time. Though everyone seems to love it, the people who come from toxic families full of childhood trauma seem deeply connected to the movie. Why? Because the Madrigals, particularly Abuela, is toxic. Yup, I said it. Toxic people become that way because of their own traumas. They don’t know healthy ways to grieve and grow and heal from their past, so they develop unhealthy coping mechanisms. Abuela has deep, generational trauma from living in a dangerous time in Columbia. Then her husband and the father of her three newborns sacrifices himself, another devastatingly tragic event. Without therapy, Abuela did the best she could. Was it enough? No. Does her trauma justify her toxic behavior? No.
When you grow up in a toxic family, you develop defense and coping mechanisms to literally survive. The Madrigal children and grandchildren do a really great job of representing all the various mechanisms that can come out of trauma. If you grew up in a toxic family, you absolutely see yourself in at least one of the Madrigal family members. It’s totally normal to relate to a couple of them, or maybe if you are an only child like me, you see yourself in all of them.
So which one(s) are you, exactly? Find out below:
Julieta, Mirabel’s mom and one of Abuela’s triplets. Her gift is healing others with her cooking.
You might be Julieta if…
- You are in charge of healing everyone, both emotionally and physically.
- You do far more of the household work than everyone else.
- You take on a motherly role to everyone, including your own parents.
Pepa, Mirabel’s aunt and one of Abuela’s triplets. Her gift is she can control the weather with her mood.
You might be Pepa if…
- You have high key anxiety.
- You have strong emotions that can easily shift from one to the other.
- You wear your emotions and thoughts on your sleeve.
Bruno, Mirabel’s uncle and one of Abuela’s triplets. His gift is he can see into the future.
You might be Bruno if…
- You are the black sheep of the family.
- Your family does not accept you and your strengths for what they are.
- You are the family’s scapegoat for everything that is wrong.
Delores, Mirabel’s cousin and the first born of Pepa. Her gift is supersonic hearing.
You might be Delores if…
- You are responsible for knowing everything in your family.
- You silently observe everything going on around you.
- You feel like you carry the burden of all your family’s secrets.
Camilo, Mirabel’s cousin and the second born of Pepa. His gift is shape shifting into others.
You might be Camilo if…
- You are good at changing who you are, what you believe in, and what role you play based on who you are with and what they need.
- You low key have no idea who you are.
- You cope with difficult situations using humor.
Antonio, Mirabel’s cousin and the youngest child of Pepa. His gift is the ability to communicate with animals.
You might be Antonio if…
- You are deeply connected to animals and love them more than your human family.
- Your best and maybe only friends are animals.
- You escape from your life by creating other worlds in your mind.
Isabela, Mirabel’s sister and Julieta’s oldest daughter. Her gift is the ability to grow plants, particularly flowers.
You might be Isabela if…
- You have a crippling desire to be perfect at all times.
- You don’t do what makes you happy, instead do what will make others happy.
- You feel the pressure to better your family by what life choices you make.
Luisa, Mirabel’s sister and Julieta’s second daughter. Her gift is her physical strength.
You might be Luisa if…
- You feel like you have to be the strong one in the family, their rock everyone comes to to fix things.
- You feel your worth is determined by what you can do for others.
- You see your own emotions and self care as a sign of weakness.
Mirabel, Julieta’s youngest daughter. She apparently didn’t get a “gift,” but her gift is breaking generational trauma.
You might be Mirabel if…
- You see the toxic traits in your family structure and individuals, but if you ever bring it up or try to change them you are looked at like you are crazy or against the family.
- You feel like you don’t quite ever belong in your family, no matter how hard you try.
- You desperately are trying to hold all the broken pieces of your family together.
If you grew up in a toxic environment but don’t see yourself in any of them….well…maybe you are Abuela…
So who are you? What does this all mean? Nothing really, it is just a silly little personality quiz.
Or maybe it means you have deep defense and coping mechanisms to protect yourself from a lifetime of trauma and you should go to therapy to start breaking your generational trauma so you don’t pass it on to your children and your children’s children. Honestly. We all should.
So here is to all the Julietas trying to heal their family one meal at a time, the Pepas, who are stronger than their anxieties and aren’t afraid of big feelings, and the Brunos, whose gifts aren’t appreciated by their family. To the Deloreses who carry the burden if their family’s secrets, the Camilos who don’t feel comfortable or worthy in their own skin, and the Antonios, creating their own supportive family however they can. To the Isabelas who feel the crippling pressure of perfectionism, the Luisas who feel like their worth is based on what they can provide for others. And most importantly, to the Mirabels, working hard to break generational traumas. I see you. All of you. You are worthy of love. Of respect. Of being able to live your authentic life for you and only you. Even if your family doesn’t see it.