days collage gwen abigail jack chad
Credit: Jill Johnson/JPI

“Gwen really is her own worst enemy.” 

If Days of Our Lives‘ Gwen had her way, you would feel very, very sorry for her. After all, her mom’s dead, dad Jack rejected her before she was even born, while secret sis Abigail — ugh, that darned Abigail! — grew up with parents who loved her and then went on to marry a rich dude.

At least, that’s how Gwen sees things. The rather Dickensian story she grew up believing twisted her to the point where coming to Salem in order to destroy her father and his family — especially golden child Abby — became her sole reason for existing.

“The sort of irony for Gwen is that in a strange way, she’s sort of found the family that she always wanted,” sighs headwriter Ron Carlivati. “Had she taken a different approach, she could have waltzed into town and stepped into a ready-made family.”

More: Can Chad and Abigail’s marriage be saved?

In fact, if Gwen had just been honest and given them a chance, she might have been embraced by the very people who now see her as an enemy. “Instead, she opted to blow their lives sky high,” says the scribe. “Obviously, there was probably a much better way that Gwen could have handled the situation, but it would have been a lot less fun.”

She might have found that “much better way,” too, had she given her situation even a moment’s thought before launching her attack. “In a weird way, Gwen winds up being part of the collateral damage her scheme leaves in its wake,” says Carlivati. “She’s clearly driven by a very deep-seated anger that’s had years to bubble beneath the surface.

“But if you look past that volcanic fury and her very self-destructive actions,” he adds, “there’s a sadness and hurt that’s almost childlike in ways that she’s probably not even aware of.”

More: Billy Flynn discusses Chad’s two Abigails

Meanwhile, there was at least one recent moment which was a subtle clue to viewers of what was to come. “When JJ came to town for the anniversary party that Gwen helped Abigail arrange,” reminds Carlivati, “he actually tried to hit on the nanny, unaware — as was the audience — that she was his half sister.”

Casey Moss, Emily O Brien "Days of our Lives" Set NBC Studios Burbank 09/21/20 © XJJohnson/ 310-657-9661 Episode # 13974 U.S.Airdate 11/10/20

In retrospect, viewers now have a better understanding of why it was important to Gwen that JJ be present… and just as imperative that she keep him at arm’s length! Chad, meanwhile, will have to deal with the fact that he failed to do the same, especially given that his one-night stand now shares a family tie with his wife.

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“That just makes things so much more complicated where Chad and Abigail are concerned,” agrees Carlivati. “It’s one thing for her to try and forgive him for having gotten drunk and slept with another woman, but in the wake of these revelations, she has to deal with who that other woman really is.”

Do you think Gwen can ever earn the forgiveness of her newfound family? For that matter, can you as a viewer get past what she did? Perhaps this gallery looking at Chad and Abigail’s past — including the many things they’ve had to overcome — will offer us a glimpse into what the future holds.