The Glass Castle: a Case Study

1560 Words Dec 15th, 2010 7 Pages
The Glass Castle: A Case Study

The book, The Glass Castle, by Jeanette Walls gives an intimate look at her family. The Walls family does not fit society’s expectations of normal, functional or healthy behavior. Nurses are particularly interested in assisting families in similar situations. This paper evaluates the Walls family as they interact with each other and their community. Nursing activities which may be of value to the Walls family are proposed and explored.

The Walls family consists of six people, Rex, Rose Mary, and their four children, Lori, Jeannette, Brian, and Maureen. The author of the book, Jeannette, objectively describes her dysfunctional family. She reflects on detrimental circumstances without
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Her adjustment is impaired, which leads to violence directed at others. Maureen stabs her mother and spends a year incarcerated and institutionalized. Nursing diagnoses for Jeanette include low self esteem and disturbed body image related to negative feedback from peers. At school, the other students make fun of her because she is so skinny. She is called spider-legs, skeleton girl, and pipe cleaner. She hides in the bathroom during lunch to avoid being teased by the other students. She also tries to fashion her own braces out of wire because she has buckteeth and knows that her family can not afford braces. The Walls family, like many in America, is dysfunctional. The father is an alcoholic and the mother simply does not want to grow up. The Walls children have proven to be survivors and that they can take care of themselves, but that doesn’t mean that they should take care of themselves. One might ask, how can nurses help children such as the Walls? How can society help the parents? The answer is not simple or easy. The Walls are not receptive to information about health care regarding their maladaptive behaviors. When Jeanette is admitted to the hospital with third degree burns, the nurses suspect that intervention is needed. Hospital staff had an opportunity to help the Walls but they did not take advantage of it. When Rex suspects trouble, he

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