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Competing Demands In What's Eating Gilbert Grape

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The Ill Effects of Competing Demands Most individual’s emotional health directly affects their ability to maintain a high quality of life. Gilbert Grape experienced this rippling effect in the movie, What’s Eating Gilbert Grape? The moment the viewer was introduced to Gilbert, it became obvious that his demanding feelings of guilt and shame towards dysfunctional family overwhelmed him with conflict. Instead of searching out for support and solace from his loved ones, he withdrew himself emotionally and proceeded to try to handle his competing demands alone. Gilbert’s reaction to his conflict created a rift between him and his loved ones. With friction building between Gilbert and his family, the lack of support depleted his emotional health. His constant brooding made it hard for him to sleep and making good decisions. Gilbert’s state could not improve until he became venerable with Becky. Not only did this new connection improve Gilbert’s social…show more content…
Her open attitude matched equally by her lack of shame, caused Gilbert to confront his emotional condition that he had tried so hard to ignore. Gilbert scolds Arnie for not being sorry because he is ashamed of his brother’s mental illness. When Beck interrupted with, “I’m not sorry. He’s not sorry. We’re not sorry. Don’t be sorry,” Gilbert acknowledged that Becky was not quick to judge. Gilbert began to rely on the trust he was building with Becky. At home, he was reminded about the gloom surrounding his father’s death, but with Becky he could count on her support. She asked him, “What do you want?” She observed that his answers all were forms of helping his family with their own personal conflicts. Gilbert reacted to her observations by focusing on his own personal wellbeing, and coming to the realization that his poor emotional wellness was reflecting his fear of being a bad
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