Is people around them that they have built

   Is it better to live in reality or in illusions? Some people live their entire lives denying reality and hiding behind illusions that they created for themselves. Society tells us that facing reality is what we all have to do as we come of age, but should we go along with society’s standards or should we continue to live in our imaginary worlds; what are the benefits of facing a reality? In the novel Paper Towns by John Green, characters should stop hiding in their illusions because they’ll be able to escape unhealthy situations, build authentic relationships and let go of obsessions.    Escaping unhealthy situations are very difficult for many individuals because they feel obligated to stay due to the people around them that they have built relationships with. Margo was stuck in Jefferson Park, where she had created illusions of herself to please other people, for instance, Margo’s mother viewed Margo as the rebellious, irresponsible teenager and she became that. She left abruptly as she explains in chapter three, ‘You pull your life off all at once—like a Band-Aid.'(Green 280), the Band-Aid represented the pain that would be caused to those who cared for her. Margo was stuck in a difficult position because she wanted to get away from the toxic people in her life but couldn’t do so without hurting those who truly cared for her, consequently, she decided to sever all ties with everything in relations to Jefferson Park. Leading up to Margo’s disappearance, she had found out her longtime boyfriend has been cheating on her with Becca and she thought Lacey had known as well but didn’t bother to tell her. However, Lacey was unaware of Jase and Becca because her own boyfriend, Craig, deceived her: ‘this has really sucked because Craig knew’ (112). Fortunately, once Lacey realized her boyfriend had lied, she broke things off with him.    Another benefit of confronting reality is gaining the ability to build and strengthen authentic relationships. Ben was able to have a relationship with Lacey after he stopped idolizing her as a perfect creature, he fell in love with ‘Lacey but not the visible Lacey'(272). Before they had started talking and getting to know one another, Ben saw Lacey as another ‘honeybunny’ but once he stopped hiding within the illusion he had created for himself, he was able to connect with the real Lacey. Nevertheless, relationships can be, not only romantic, but friendships are also considered relationships. A prominent relationship in the novel Paper Towns by John Green is the friendship between Ben and Quentin, both boys expect the other to be them. Quentin expects Ben to care just as much about Margo as he does, while Ben expects Quentin to care about prom and graduation as much as he does. Luckily, after Radar pushes them to face the reality by stating: ‘stop thinking Ben should be you, and he needs to stop thinking you should be him’ (185), Quentin and Ben come out of their imaginary worlds and learn to accept one another for who they are.