Sadness is the second manifestation of Riley’s emotions to come to life in the movie Inside Out. All of Riley’s memories are stored in colored orbs which are then sent into “storage” at the end of each waking day. All of the most important memories (“core memories”) are kept in “headquarters” to fuel 5 Personality Islands which represent Riley’s unique personality traits.
Joy is the most dominant emotion that keeps Riley in a happy state, and the other characters or emotions follow her lead as she manages Riley’s memories. Until one day, Riley’s world is turned upside down when her father takes on a new job forcing the whole family to be uprooted and moved from Minnesota to San Francisco. This triggers Sadness to touch happy core memories disrupting the personality islands and ultimately causing Riley to become unstable.
Sadness is a delicate topic, especially when it comes to children, and just like the movie in which the other characters/emotions don’t understand her and try to keep her contained, we often try to deflect or redirect our energies when it comes to sadness. Joy realizes the important role that Sadness plays and rather than keeping her contained, she brings her to the forefront, allowing Riley to fully express her feelings of loneliness and resentment as she adjusts to her new surroundings. It is through this expression that her parents are able to see and understand how distressed she truly is. Inside Out did a phenomenal job in showing congruence between Sadness and Joy. It really is okay to be sad.
HERE IS A PRINTABLE FOR YOUR CHILD TO COLOR: