The Glass Castle Alcoholism Essay

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Alcoholism: A Debilitating Experience for Children In The Glass Castle by Jeanette Walls, Rex Walls is highly dependent on alcohol, which significantly hurts Jeanette and her siblings and drives the family apart. The Walls children and countless others like them across the United States have become victims of alcoholism, which is a factor that they cannot control, but debilitates them socially, physically, financially, and emotionally. Rex Wall’s alcoholism causes him to frequently neglect his children and ignore their needs, which often endangers them. Furthermore, Rex’s alcohol addiction affects his behavior causing him to use profanity and act in an angry and even violent manner, negatively impacting the family as a whole. Many readers of…show more content…
In the article “Children of Alcoholics” produced by the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy, the author explains the negative effect of parental alcoholism on their children’s emotional wellbeing, when he writes, “Children with alcoholic parents are more likely to experience symptoms of anxiety and/or depression, antisocial behavior, relationship difficulties, behavioral problems, and/or alcohol abuse. One recent study finds that children of drug-abusing fathers have the worst mental health issues (Children of Alcoholics 1). Walls reflects upon her childhood experiences in which her father would become drunk and not be able to control his behavior, as she writes, “After working on the bottle for a while, Dad turned into an angry-eyed stranger who threw around furniture and threatened to beat up Mom or anyone else who got in his way. When he’d had his fill of cussing and hollering and smashing things up, he’d collapse” (Walls 23). The Walls children, who frequently encounter their father’s abusive behavior, are affected mentally in the same way that national studies have shown. Jeanette Walls describes how, after drinking, her father’s behavior becomes cruel and intolerable through his use of profanity, threats, and angry, even violent, actions. In a conventional family, a parent has the responsibility of being a role model to influence their children in a positive way as they develop. Unfortunately, in the Walls family and other families with alcoholic parents, children are often subject to abuse and violence, which places them at risk, not only physically, but mentally. Rex’s irrational behavior when he is drunk is detrimental to the children’s upbringing, causing them to lose trust in their parents, have significantly lower self-esteem and confidence, and feel insecure. Rex’s behavior contributes to Jeanette’s
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