Analyzing Themes In David Sheff's Beautiful Boy

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Most parents could never expect that their own child would become a drug addict, but unfortunately they have little control over this happening and may even unknowingly contribute to their child becoming an addict. In Beautiful Boy by David Sheff, he describes his and his families experience dealing with his son Nic who is addicted to crystal meth. In telling his story, the author often uses quotes, lyrics, and other pop culture references to not only further enhance his own emotions and feelings, but to also potentially help readers identify more with his own story. The epilogues David Sheff chose to insert in the beginning of each part fit particularly to that specific section, the themes changing as the story develops. These quotes are…show more content…
From quoting Kurt Cobain, William Shakespeare, and Joan Dideon, the author uses these famous figures writings to better illustrate his story to the audience. At some point in life, parents need to let go of their children and the mindset that they always need to be there to protect them, in order to allow them to grow and become more independent. This is often a hard thing for parents to do because they know that when this happens, their child has to begin to make their own choices, which leaves room for mistakes to happen. David Sheff quotes Kurt Cobain in his suicide note in part one where he wrote, “I have a daughter who reminds me too much of what I used to be: full of love and joy, missing every person she meets because everyone is good and will do her no harm. And that terrifies me to the point where I can barely function” (17). This quotes relates to the authors fear of knowing that his once innocent, young child will sooner or later be revealed to the harsh reality and struggles of life. David Sheff began his story going back down memory lane,…show more content…
That we should, with joy, pleasance, revel, and applause transform ourselves into beasts” (105). This quote relates to the common theme that those who suffer with addiction, often use these substances to forget about stress and pain, or whatever hardship they may be going through. Although, this addiction leads those to become someone they are not and numbing the pain creates an even bigger mess in the end, sometimes turning the person into someone they are not, or a “beast”. This quote comes from The Tempest, which is about a father who goes to a deserted island with his daughter when she was a baby, in hopes to keep her safe and protect her from the rest of the world. But, even with them being on a deserted island, a guy ends washed up there from a shipwreck, and the daughter and him fall in love instantly once they meet. The dad was willing to go through great lengths to try and keep his daughter safe and away from the rest of the world, but that still managed to happen. This connects with the idea in the last paragraph that eventually children will have to grow up and face reality, no matter how much a parent may try and prevent that. Some children though, like in Nic’s case, end up growing up and making pretty extreme mistakes. David Sheff goes through great lengths to try and help his son overcome his

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