The Glass Castle Character Analysis

1335 Words6 Pages

Tyler Lucas
Mrs. Wood
English III
06 February 2023
Rex Wall’s Parenting Ability What skills do you think are necessary to be worthy of being a reliable parent of kids? In the story The Glass Castle written and narrated by Jeanette Wall, Rex Wall, the father of 3 children, one being Jeannette, clearly shows his interesting parenting skills. Some are good, some are bad, which puts him and his family through many ups and downs that we see as we read the story. Rex teaches his kids good morals to live by, but in very contradicting ways. He has his many intriguing attributes of being an exciting parent, but opposing those are his attributes of being irresponsible and more often than not, immature, which is why it is important to go in depth and …show more content…

Readers first learn that when he speaks. For example, Rex gets “into an argument with the doctor” because he “thought [Jeannette] shouldn’t be wearing bandages.” With his words, he continues to force his opinion when he suggests “[b]urns need to breathe” (13). This greatly shows how Rex openly expresses what he believes should be said in the moment. He has no filter which is part of what makes him an exciting parent, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t ways of being exciting without causing problems with the things he says. It shows his lack of respect towards the people that are helping take care of his daughter. But his lack of respect shows up again when he calls his wife’s mother a “goddamned flint-faced hag!” (20). The immaturity shows in his inability to put a filter on his language around people that he should be respecting. Not only should he be respecting her because it is his wife’s mother but also because she is an elder to him. The immaturity in Rex’s language repeatedly shows up throughout the story when he yells “[v]irgin my ass!” during a church service, and the vulgar statement “Mary was a sweet Jewish broad who got herself knocked up!” (114) Rex’s inappropriate language sets a bad example for his kids to look up to because they will only follow in his footsteps as most kids do when they look up to their parents. They will learn bad habits like using inappropriate language during …show more content…

After the death of his first daughter is it clear that it really affected him mentally, pushing him to show his kids how much he cares about them. We see this a lot with Jeanette, like when Rex went to the hospital to get her out he said, “You don’t have to worry anymore, baby, [y]ou’re safe now.” (14) His urge to get Jeanette out of the hospital because he believed it was saving her shows his ambition to care for his kids more than he thought the nurses could. Rex shows a lot of affection towards all of his kids but it is especially shown to Jeannette. When talking to a neighbor about Jeannette playing with fire and not being scared, Rex said “Why the hell would she?” He was proud of her because she “already fought the fire once and won.” (15) It’s obvious that Rex cares a lot about Jeannette and is proud of the things that she can accomplish and overcome. There is a connection between Jeanette and her father that most may not have caught onto while reading the story. We see Jeannette overcome her fear of fire but it’s almost as if Rex aspired to overcome his drinking problem because he saw what his daughter was capable of. Drinking was his biggest issue which is a major part of what didn’t make him a very suitable parent. During the summer Rex would “sit under the orange trees reading.” (118) as a way to get over his drinking

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