May Bailey was one tough lady, but she wasn’t all bad.
Wind at My Back’s May Bailey, played magnificently by Shirley Douglas, is without a doubt one of the toughest women ever to grace the small screen. May’s unshakable opinion that Honey was unfit to care for her children on her own after Jack Bailey’s death formed the central conflict of the first season.
May certainly didn’t approach the situation with a lot of compassion toward Honey because she was upset and blamed Honey for her son’s death. However, as much as she didn’t care what happened to Honey she was extremely concerned about the well being of her grandchildren. Who knows what terrible things might have happened had May allowed the boys and Violet to go with Honey when she had no means to support them.
What really drove May’s decisions was love for her family and her community. Often her decisions were quite harsh and caused a lot of turmoil, but they were always based firmly on what she believed was right.
May Bailey wasn’t evil or malicious; rather she was just overly protective of those she loved. In the end, it was those same people she loved dearly that made her accept Honey despite their differences.
Are you a believer in tough love? How do you think May handled her family in these tough times?