the end of the episode, it is revealed that Jill will not change her
name despite the increasing pressure to do so from both her
mother-in-law and sister-in-law. Jill’s relationship with her children
is ultimately a force supporting her authentic self because, despite
the imposing influence of her in-laws and the society of “one-
percenters” all around, Jill maintains a pure relationship with her
kids. Yet, even in the most authentic and pure domestic arena, Jill
still reveals hints of her aspirational self when she inserts herself
into the private school crowd and considers the name change.
In her role as wife to Andy, Jill aspires to be the best spouse
possible. She wants to please her man in the ways that she believes
the other neighborhood wives accommodate their husbands. In
this endeavor, however, Jill is again pulled in very different
directions. During the first season of the series, viewers see Andy
and Jill struggling with intimacy. They are either too tired to have
sex or have children wanting them to be available at inopportune
times. So, Jill grapples with whether she should spice things up or
just be herself in the bedroom. The episode “Dying to Get In”
features a situation in which Jill simultaneously withholds her
desire to fit in with her peers and loathes them for their Upper East
Side ways. Jill aspires to be a hot mom for her husband when, in
reality, her husband married her because he fell in love with her
authentic self. Like most people, Jill “underestimate[s] the power
of social motives to influence behavior” (Bicchieri 188). Through
societal influences, Jill is seduced into underestimating the effect
of social cues in the lives of women residing in the Upper East
Side. The constant conflict taking place within her about whether
to be countercultural or to be the quintessential wife and mother
in the Upper East Side fuels much of the dramatic tension on the
series.
Another manifestation of this tension is related to the
relationship Jill has with her husband’s family. Of course, Andy
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