The Glass Castle Essay

1042 Words5 Pages
There has always been much controversy regarding the relationship between parents and children through the ages. While some consider that parents are responsible for their children’s material upbringing and that they need to provide their offspring with the basic needs, others believe that parents primarily need to focus on the intellectual upbringing of their children. Jeannette Walls’ situation is self-explanatory when considering parents who would rather instill creative thinking in their children instead of trying to provide them with basic needs. Most people are inclined to associate parents with teachers and children with pupils; yet, not uncommonly children also take on the role of teachers. Through adopting such attitudes they can construct the limits and responsibilities for their parents. As Jeannette’s parents, Rex and Rose Mary, attempted to provide their children with a different way of parenting, it was difficult for Jeannette and her siblings to understand what their role was in the family. Although this is not necessarily the best way to raise a child, society promotes the belief that parents need to raise children in ways that are not consistent with how they actually want to behave. One of the most important roles of children and parents alike is related to how each group needs to accept the other, and Rose Mary displays this when trying to convince Jeannette to stop hiding the reality of their family, stating, “Your father and I are who we are” (p. 5). Rose Mary has always contended that Jeannette was mature for her age and did not hesitate to provide her with missions that would normally be performed by an adult. It is probably because of this that Jeannette burned herself badly while she was cooking hot-dogs as a little girl. Jeannette experienced the plight of homelessness firsthand. Even with this, she hesitated to

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