Drinking Coffee Elsewhere
In the short story Drinking Coffee Elsewhere, there are many themes that are seen within Dina, such as struggling with sexuality, fear of labeling, fear of facing reality, and fear of opening up to others.
The narrator, Dina is not clear about her sexuality. The story does not imply whether she is a lesbian or not. When she meets Heidi, their relationship grows, they become very close and spend days in Dina’s room together. They even sleep together in the same bed. Later in the story when Heidi comes out, that causes a drift between them. Heidi was the only person that she could relate to and now that she came out as a lesbian, it feels like she no longer has that bond with her. She also becomes defensive when Dr. Raeburn asks about any crushes she’s had. Later in the story, she accuses Dr. Raeburn of calling her gay.
The fear of facing reality is an important theme in the story. She lies about things so that she does not have to face the reality, which in some cases, are very painful for Dina. She is in denial about the death of her mother and having any type of crush when she was younger. It seems as though she lies in order to seem normal and people will not label her. All of her lying is a shield to keep her from having emotion toward the things that she has gone through. Also the fear of being labeled goes hand in hand with this theme. She lies in order to refrain from being labeled by others. She just wants to be herself without anyone judging her. And she had that type of friend in Heidi, she did not judge her. Dina also never talked about her parents when Dr. Raeburn asked. This also goes back to her not wanting to face reality. She has not come to terms about her mother’s death.
Also throughout the novel, Dina is reluctant to open up to others. The only person that she has opened up to was Heidi. And once Heidi came out as a lesbian, she went back to keeping to herself. This could also show that she has a...
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