Teenage Anxiety & Development (Catcher in the Rye vs. Perks of Being a Wallflower)

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Anxiety in teens can be caused by a number of factors, such as genetics, stressful events, trauma and the environment a teen was raised. If left untreated, anxiety and anxiety disorders can cause serious problems in teenagers (Butler, Alia). This truth is in fact demonstrated throughout Catcher in the Rye, as well as The Perks of Being a Wallflower. Holden Caulfield of The Catcher in the Rye and Charlie of The Perks of Being a Wallflower are two teens both suffering from the angst and ambivalence of their teenage years. Holden Caulfield is a child of the 1950s, exhausted with life in post-WWII America. Whereas Charlie is growing up the 90s in a developing and fast moving society. Both books, however, present a very similar general attitude. The main characters in each of the books both desire to fit in to society; however, due to tragic life experiences, alienation from society, and immaturity, it is nearly impossible for them to do so without keeping an open mind and seeking the help of family member, friends, or professionals. Puzzled by the transition from adolescence to adulthood, teenagers are often unable to order their chaotic experiences without the help of others, preventing them from becoming valued members of their respective societies. Tragic events which occur during the stages of childhood can strongly influence how a person goes through their adolescence. These influences can interfere with a teenager’s transition to adulthood. Both Holden and Charlie are victims of tragic or unfortunate circumstances. This is revealed throughout The Catcher in the Rye as readers learn of the death of Holden’s brother Allie. Holden is deeply troubled by his brother's death. He carries around his brother's baseball glove and never really deals with the death in a mature manner. He writes an essay about his feelings for the loss of his brother but when his
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