For Esmewith Love and Squalor

501 Words3 Pages
When someone has a psychological breakdown it means that they cannot cope with past experiences and those experiences keep coming back to haunt them. A lot of things these people think about are all in their head and can eventually cause them to go crazy and believe that things are happening again. One experience that can haunt you forever is going to fight in war and coming home while trying to maintain a normal life. In both short stories, “For Esme—with Love and Squalor” and “A Perfect Day for Bananafish” by J.D. Salinger, the author shows how the ravages of war do cause psychological breakdowns. Each character from both stories reflect Salinger’s theme on war through their psychological breakdowns. In “A Perfect Day for Bananafish”, Muriel Grass is married to Seymour, who had just returned from war. Because he was so shaken up from fighting in the war, the Army put him in the hospital for treatment. They released him a little while later which the family psychologist strongly disagreed with. He stated that the Army committed the perfect crime by releasing him from the hospital. His wife decided it would be a good idea to take a vacation just those two and just ran off. She took him to a place near the beach where he met a young girl. He talked to her about the bananafish in the ocean. He was constantly found wearing his robe around even to the beach. One incident happened at the beach when he thought Sybil, the little girl, was wearing a pink bathing suit when it was really blue. This shows how he isn’t in a stable mental state and shouldn’t be around people. He even called his wife “Miss spiritual tramp of 1948” but didn’t realize what he was really saying. One afternoon he went back to the room and laid on the bed with his wife and shot himself in the head. Seymour was in such a different mental state that it drove him crazy and it seemed as if he didn’t know
Open Document