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A Rose for Emily: Dying for Life

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No one leaves Miss Emily. Miss Emily feared those she loved of leaving her. As she clung to the past, even one in which she created in her own mind, she morphed her own denial into a life for herself. She refused death in any form. Her mind tried to survive a state of mind in which abandonment was lethal. As her internal psychosis set in, she robbed herself of a life while trying to erase the thought of her loved ones’ deaths.
Emily Grierson came from the most prominent family of her town. Although she rarely left the house or socialized with the townspeople, they were fascinated by her seemingly quiet life. She was a peculiar woman, never married and never looking. The Griersons held themselves very high in their community and thought of themselves as better than others. It is through this conditioning that Emily first begins to train her mind to abolish separation. She believed that if her family was her only suitable associates, she best not let them leave her sight. Emily rarely left the house and did not socialize with the ladies or men of her town. It is when she purposefully segregates herself that she starts her eventual spiraling psychosis.
As years went on Emily’s mental state deteriorated slowly. When Emily’s father died the town knew, but Miss Emily knew no such thing. Although the physical realization was obvious, the woman sat with her deceased father in the parlor for nearly three days. When the town was finally allowed inside the house, she showed “no trace of grief on her face” and “told them her father was not dead.” Emily was resorting to a mental self-medication, a psychosis in which to treat her pain. By denying what might be devastating, she lived in a “distorted or non-existent sense of objective reality...

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...cally, in hopes to keep her loved ones from leaving, and in hopes to erase death’s wicked embrace, she stole her own life from herself. By ignoring reality, she lived no such life but a fantasy created by a vicious psychosis. No one leaves Miss Emily. In the end all that was loved was dead, and one whom had loved was too gone. Perhaps the woman’s theory was not so absurd. Abandonment is lethal. The abandoners and abandonee, each dead. Each robbed of the life that could have been.

Works Cited
Donna Olendorf, Christine Jeryan, Karen Boyden. The Gale Encyclopedia of Medicine Volume Four. Farmington Hills: Gale, 1999.
Faulkner, William. "A Rose for Emily." In An Introduction to Literature, by William Burto, William E. Cain Sylvan Barnet, 449-459. New York: Pearson Longman, 2006.
Richard R. Bootzin, Joan Ross Acocella. Abnormal Psychology. New York: Random House, 1984.
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