The girls are princess obsessed. They love all things that have to do with princesses -- tiaras, gowns, carriages, etc. Of course, most princesses belong to Disney. We read the stories, watch the movies, and talk about stepmothers all the time.
Someone needs to explain why the Disney princesses don't have mothers. Except for Sleeping Beauty, they all have fathers, but no mothers. We don't know what happened to their mothers, except several of them were replaced with wicked stepmothers.
This leads to much discussion about where the princesses' mothers are. The girls want to know how the mothers died. Was the princess sad when her mother died? Why is the stepmother mean? It's enough to depress anyone, let alone young children.
We try to answer all the questions, but Disney doesn't give the answers. We know Cinderella loses both her parents and is left with her evil stepmother and stepsisters. Snow White ends up running away from her stepmother, the evil queen. We reassure the girls that these are just stories, but the girls are four. Each story is very real to them.
For someplace that is supposed to be the happiest place on Earth -- the Magic Kingdom -- Disney does a good job of marketing sadness and pain.