Ordinary People Essay

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Every human being on this Earth has experienced sadness and heartbreak. Some instances are harder to cope with than others. Death of a loved one can be the hardest to deal with. That is the very thing Conrad must deal with in Judith Guest’s book, Ordinary People. Con and Buck grew up together as brothers and best friends. Until, there was a boating accident that took Buck’s life. The story involves how Con and his family get through life without Buck anymore. There are many characters in this book that have had some role in helping Con cope with the loss of his beloved brother. Three people that have an impact on his recovery from the sadness are Berger, Calvin, and Jeannine. Berger is a therapist who quickly befriends Con, and helps him out of his depressed and saddened state. Berger is described to be an adult figure in Con’s life that he can talk openly to, and gain life guidance from. This has a huge impact on the way Con handles situations that could end badly otherwise. One example of this is when Con is at one of his evening sessions with Berger. At this particular session, Berger is teaching Con how to handle his anger, which is instrumental for his recovery. “When it comes, there’s always too much of it. I don’t know how to handle it.” “Sure, I know,” Berger says. “It’s a closet full of junk. You open the door and everything falls out (78).” This quote shows how Berger and Con really understand each other, and connect with each other. Con can’t get rid of his feelings without Beth or Cal getting upset or flustered. Berger just lets him do and say whatever, and he helps to decipher his feelings. Another example of Berger playing an important role in his recovery is when Con calls an emergency meeting with Berger. Con wants to see Berger because he found an article in the newspaper that said his friend Karen from the hospital had committed suicide. He then recalls his suicidal attempt and panics. “The thing that hurts you,” Berger...
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