the big bang theory sheldon and amy cbs

Sheldon Cooper has always been...a bit much to deal with on The Big Bang Theory, but he's definitely changed since getting engaged to Amy. And, Jim Parsons, who plays Sheldon, thinks the character has absolutely changed for the better. Here's what he had to say about Sheldon's slow evolution toward becoming a better person who's a lot more understanding of others' needs.

I think that it's one of the journeys they've really worked to take him on. We've had several different episodes, it feels like, where Amy's coaching him in the ways of being empathetic. We're working on an episode right now, where he realizes that she doesn't do certain things that she wants to do because she knows how he'll react to it. And he doesn't like it. He starts trying to work on not complaining about what she wants --- and it lasts for a couple of pages.

As fans of The Big Bang Theory know, once Sheldon fully embraced a romantic relationship with Amy he started to develop better instincts when it came to what the people around him needed. Once he and Amy moved in together, that trend continued, and now that they've been engaged for a few months the changes really are coming fast and furious. Sheldon was used to making sure his needs were met, regardless of whether or not his (frequently exasperated) friends were fully on board with his demands about Chinese take out, seats on the couch, room temperature, bathroom schedules and a whole host of other issues. More and more, though, with Amy's help, he's beginning to appreciate that what he needs might sometimes inconvenience others, and, as Jim Parsons said, he's actually starting to really flex his muscles when it comes to "being empathetic."

In his talk with Parade, Parsons also spoke about the line The Big Bang Theory has to tread, especially this far along into the run of the show, to keep enough of the status quo so that fans stick around, but also making sure the characters we've come to know and love grow and change like real people.

Yeah, absolutely. And I'll be honest, as an actor, I really thank God for it, because it's one of the fences that they straddle so well as writers, is keeping everything true enough to keep the audience there, but moving it along enough to keep everybody working on it interested, I think, including themselves. You know? It's a major gift. And the longer we've gone on our show, the more evident that's become.

You can enjoy the more empathetic Sheldon Cooper when The Big Bang Theory airs Thursdays on CBS. For more on what you can catch in the coming weeks, be sure to bookmark our midseason premiere guide.

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