I Stand Here Ironing Analysis

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Emily's mother is portrayed as the narrator in the story “I Stand Here Ironing”. When a counselor from school comes to her house to discuss some concerns with Emily, her mother begins to reflect on the guilt and regret she feels toward how Emily was raised and the difficult childhood she had. The mother feels defeated as she thinks back to the mistakes she made as a mother. As a single mother, she faced extreme poverty and terrible conditions. The mother recalls her life of self-denial, deprivation, and loss. When Emily was only 8 months old, her father leaves and her mother is forced to raise her baby as a single mother with limited resources. While her mother was forced to find work or keep her jobs, Emily was lefted with both a neighbor…show more content…
Even though the property was beautiful, the living conditions were horrible. The children received no nurturing or affection and were not allowed to keep any letters from home. The food was terrible which kept Emily from regaining any weight back. She also had a serious case of asthma, which prevented her from playing and running like the other children. This separation had a devastating effect on Emily and causes her to withdraw and become isolated with very few friends and bad grades. Having one illness after another kept Emily from having a normal childhood. Between being in torturous daycares and the separation from her mother, this all lead up to Emily falling behind in school. Emily was constantly forced into strange environments for periods of time. Everytime she was able to return home, there was a different situation to adjuct to. Between her mother having a new husband, a new baby, or a new job, this caused Emily to become more and more reserved. As a little girl, Emily was often left alone or in daycares so her mother was able to…show more content…
Emily’s mother was not abusive or intentionally neglectful, but she was a victim of an unpleasant circumstance that was out of her control. However, the fact that her mother couldn’t participate more in Emily’s life may have current issues that Emily faces as a young woman. Even though her mother can financially meet the needs of her children, she is incapable of forming a deeper emotional bond with them. Her mother also reminiscences on the possibilities and choices that Emily has as a young woman, while she had many restraints at Emily's age living in a limited

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