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Psychological Disorders in Greg Gaines

Psychological Disorders in Greg Gaines

One of the most recurring themes in the novel ‘Me and Earl and the Dying Girl is social anxiety.  In typical high school life, one must belong to a nation, which may never warrant total security. The situation is not different from Greg Gaines, who can withdraw at will from any social environment. Greg has only one friend (Earl) whom they spend a significant amount of their time making movies until Greg’s mother coerces him to rekindle his childhood bond with Rachel. Rachel has been diagnosed with leukaemia, and Greg finds it hard to have a serious discourse with Rachael as he does not want her to think about the elephant in the room: Racheal’s inevitable death (Andrews, 2017).   The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) defines social anxiety disorder as a type of anxiety that precipitates extreme fear within social settings.  Individuals suffering from social anxiety disorder are more likely to have difficulties talking to people as they fear being judged (American Psychiatric Association, 2013).

The situation is not different from Greg Gaines, whose phobia of being judged makes him feel that he has to make Rachel feel better by laughter.  Greg feels that the only he can be a good friend to Rachel is to distract her from her real-life issues and joke about other things instead. Besides, some of the classical symptoms that Greg Gaines displays that indicate he is suffering from social anxiety disorder include difficulties that include avoiding social situations that are deemed as normal, including difficulties in interacting with unfamiliar people, difficulties in starting conversations,  and maintaining eye contact (Andrews, 2017). Greg Gaines survives his entire high school by adhering to his flawless system of living within his periphery- being nice but not too nice, laughing but not being too loud, and existing but adequately for peers to barely notice.

 Work Cited

Andrews, J. (2017). Me and Earl and the Dying Girl. In Google Books. Atlantic Books. https://books.google.co.ke/books?id=50nCDQAAQBAJ&dq=Me+and+Earl+and+the+Dying+Girl

Association, A. P. (2013). Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5®). In Google Books. American Psychiatric Pub. https://books.google.co.ke/books?id=-JivBAAAQBAJ&printsec=frontcover&dq=diagnostic+and+statistical+manual+of+mental+disorders&hl=en&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwiBlaebiIz0AhUVS_EDHQroBcAQ6AF6BAgHEAI#v=onepage&q=diagnostic%20and%20statistical%20manual%20of%20mental%20disorders&f=false

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Question 


Homework: Once you have read through Chapter 7 of Me and Earl and the Dying Girl, answer the question below:
The child psychologist Bruno Bettelheim has written The Uses of Enchantment to argue that fairy tales offer young children a means “to master the psychological problems of growing up—overcoming narcissistic disappointments, oedipal dilemmas, sibling rivalries

Psychological Disorders in Greg Gaines

Psychological Disorders in Greg Gaines

; becoming able to relinquish childhood dependencies; gaining a feeling of selfhood and self-worth, and a sense of moral obligation” (6) If we assume that the genre of the Young Adult novel performs a similar function for adolescents, then Jesse Andrews’ Me and Earl and the Dying Girl must be presenting some (not all) of the problems confronted by teenagers as they mature. What are some of the psychological problems revealed in the story of Greg Gaines, and how are they dramatized in the novel?
To get full credit, your response must be at least 200 words. Focus on establishing your Point (the direct answer to my question), supplying pertinent Information through a summary of pieces of plot and/or through quotes, and Explaining how the information supports the Point.

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