Depression Exposed In Laura Anderson's Speak

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In reading Speak I was able to see that Melinda’s depression causes her to isolate herself from those around her. Her parents struggle to deal with a daughter who is emotionally unstable. They feel they have lost the person they once knew. I am angered by her parents as they refused to understand her situation. In her silence, her parents demand answers; questioning her, “why aren’t you saying anything?” The harsh tone conveyed by her parents expresses a lack of care and sympathy they have towards their daughter. They consider her silence is an act of defiance, a way to disobey them. They believe she is acting this way in spite of them; to distance herself from them. Her parents cannot comprehend that in reality it is to hide her pain and sadness.…show more content…
How can I [she] start? What is wrong with me [her]?” Anderson’s rhetorical questions indicate that by keeping a secret so big, Melinda feels detached from those around her. She feels lonely and excluded when no one attempts to connect with her to give her sense of comfort and normality. Through Melinda’s first person narrative she expresses a desire to share her story as she continues to think about how she can approach her situation. It was a relief to know she had the courage to even think about asking for help instead of remaining in her self-created prison. Although I was angered by the ignorance of Melinda’s parents, I felt sympathetic towards them, they already had a shaky marriage and having their only child be nonresponsive would only cause more difficulties. I felt sorry that they didn’t know how to help her. Melinda’s parents should have put aside their opinions and to build trust and allow her to open up to them instead of allowing her to feel alone in the world. Even as the novel comments on the extremity of isolation, everyone can feel isolated. The novels coming of genre helps teenagers connect and sympathise with the feeling of loneliness she

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