The Death Of A Loved One

1688 Words Sep 4th, 2016 7 Pages
The death of a loved one can be difficult to understand especially when it involves a child. People often use an experience like the loss of a loved one as a chance to redefine their own life and to change the way they view and experience life. In the novel Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger, Holden Caulfield’s life is forever altered by the death of his brother. When Holden’s kid brother Allie passes away, he does not have the expertise to handle the emotions that flood him, and he has a mental breakdown and chooses to run away from any potential emotional relationship.
Holden begins to spiral downward when his brother is diagnosed with leukemia, but hits rock bottom and experiences the beginning of a mental breakdown when Allie succumbs to the disease and dies. Holden does nothing to help himself, he is his own worst enemy. His former teacher, Mr. Antolini recognizes this and tries to warn Holden, "This fall I think you 're riding for- it 's a special kind of fall, a horrible kind” (187). Holden, however, ignores this warning and continues down the path of destruction. He feels neglected by his family because all of their attention is focused on Allie, causing Holden to distrust them. Holden has been trying to hold it in check for Allie’s sake, but the night of Allie’s death he cannot hold it in anymore. He loses a grip on his self-control and breaks down. He pushes everyone he cares for away and refuses to let anyone in. Holden is only two years older than Allie but by…
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