Breathing Under Water Analysis

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Control is defined as a control on authority, impact on the incidences, behaviors, circumstances, or individuals (“Dictionary). This excessive need for determining the actions of others is seen in the novel, Breathing Underwater by Alex Flinn through Nick and Caitlin’s relationship. Caitlin fails to see the control that Nick holds over her, the unhealthiness it brings to their relationship, and allows Nick to convince her that he is the only one who really cares about her. This is seen through jealousy, criticism, and codependency. These are very common in controlling relationships and grants both parties to remain in an unhealthy situation.
Controlling relationships are toxic, and jealousy plays a big role in that. It worsens the interaction
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This is called codependency. People who are in codependency have a pattern of engaging in well-intentioned but unproductive and unhealthy behaviors(“Six Hallmarks of Codependence”). This is seen in the novel, Breathing Underwater. Nick uses it to his advantage so that Caitlin thinks of him as the knight in shining armour that will always save the day. The day that Caitlin gets nominated homecoming princess they ride around the track in a convertible and Caitlin, thanks Nick and says it’s the best day of her life because of him. Liana butts in and says that it’s not because of Nick. She was nominated because everyone loves her. Caitlin replies saying, “They love me because I’m skinny, and I’m Nick Andreas’s girlfriend. A year ago, I couldn’t have rented space at your lunch tables, and if I’d shown up, they’d have called me a geekoid or a lezzie like they call my friends” (Flinn, 141). Nick truly makes Caitlin feel as though no one else can ever care for her like he does and that he is the only one she can really trust. Nick’s Codependence maladaptive and dysfunctional (Codependent or Simply Dependent: What’s the Big Difference”). This is a huge problem, and can cause many issues in any relationship, whether it be a friendship, love interest, or any other
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