Introduction Thesis: Harmonious family relations characterized by care


A common assumption about teens is that they are ill tempered, unpredictable and spoilt people. Their life s characterizes by sexual awakening and crises about confidence and identity (Bynoe 45). Many teens‘s lives are marked by failures and rarely do they appreciate their parents whether they are right or not.

Very few people enjoy their teenage as normal people should (Leman 23). It’s therefore safe to conclude that teen angst is more or less an act of life. The angst is chiefly brought by development of new body features, introduction to sex, access to new freedoms and youth idealism (Cifeli 56).

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This essay will focus on three movies, Catcher in the Rye, Rebel without a Cause and Breakfast Club. The essay will focus on the characters’ struggles with teenage problems brought by lack of guidance and attention from parents.
The essay will try to show the effects of dysfunctional families and the effect such issues as violence in the family can bring upon teenagers.
The importance of good parent child relationship in fostering good behavior and normalcy will be stressed throughout.
The analysis will be done in three paragraphs with each paragraph focusing on one movie.

Thesis: Harmonious family relations characterized by care are a precursor in normal teenage relationships and lives among adolescents.


The nuclear family is the most basic unit ad primary interaction unit in the society. Though it children are socialized to become responsible adults capable of making right choices. Due to the primacy that the family holds in a child’s development, many of the developments that take place directly affect their growth and development (Purcell 53).

This, coupled with the tumultuous time of teenage, young adults are bound to be confused about identity, right and wrong and the meaning of being and acting normal.

At the center of all this is the important relationship between parents and the kind of kind of treatment the parents give to the child. The three films that will be analyzed will focus on the need for care, harmony and guidance in the family for normal teenage development

In the Catcher in the Rye, Holden Caulfield, has an unsettled teenage as evidenced by his truancy from school and inappropriate entertainment activities in New York. It’s evident that Holden is not at peace with his parents. The same can be said of his sister who sees his Holden as his hero.

At school Holden is involved with disputes with his school mates. However what points to the absence of a a cozy relationship between him and his parents is the fact that he escapes and goes to a New York hotel instead of home/ he only goes home when his parents are not present.

His imagination as the sole guardian of numerous children in rye fields is an indication of the inner needs of care and guidance he lacks, probably stemming from an early age as an adult. His intention to save children from losing their innocence is a reflection of the fear he has of growing up and the uncertainty that growing it presents without guidance from parents.

Problems associated with teen confusion are clearly captured in rebel without a cause. Jim Stark displays antisocial behavior which can be attributed to the breakdown of communication in his family.

His parents are always fighting and the apparent lack of moral strength by his father. The relationship between Jim and his father is devoid of any care and Jim craves for attention from a father figure. “What do you do when you have to be a man?” is a question that he asks his father that clearly shows the attention he need from his parents.

Through Jim’s fifteen year old friend Plato, the importance of having harmonious, caring and understanding parents is captured because his problems stem from the abandonment of his father. Jim has numerous encounters with bullies at school and thugs during a night out.

The way he confronts the bullies’ reveals a desperate need for parental guidance in the way to relate with other people and antagonists especially. Plato’s relations with other people seem to have taken beating and he seems to be in an unstable state. His violent actions lead to his death by shooting from the police.

Its safe to assume that his dysfunctional family is the reason he lacks the care and understanding that someone his age needs. He seems to vent his frustrations and anger at people as evidenced with his charge at the police.

The breakfast club brings together teenagers from different backgrounds that have issues majorly stemming from their dysfunctional backgrounds.

After their temporary “incarceration” the teens discover they have a lot in common in that they have problems common in teenagers. For instance, Allison is a compulsive liar while Brian and Claire are not proud of their virginity. Bender is a bully who comes from an abusive household. These teenagers’ problems are a stark indicator of broken relationships with their parents.

Brian and Claire should be proud of their virginity but lack of guidance and encouragement from parents has led to believe virginity is something to be ashamed of. Bender’s family lacks harmony, care and guidance and the abusive nature that characterizes his family does little to help.

Works cited

Bynoe, Sara. Teen Angst: A Celebration of Really Bad Poetry. New York: Routledge, 2005. Print

Cifelli, Martin. Random Miracles. Burlington: Infobase Publications, 2009. Print.

Leman, Rose. Teen Angst. London: Sage, 2006. Print.

Purcell, Sarahbet. This Is Not a Love Song: A Novel. New York: Routledge, 2006.