April 7, 2019
Rose Mary and Rex Walls are Doing Their Best to be Good Parents
Jeanette and her siblings had an unconventional childhood characterized by chaos and persistent struggles. Throughout The Glass Castle memoir by Jeanette Walls, we witness a variety of unorthodox parenting techniques brought on my Rose and Rex Walls. Although Jeanette’s parents are irresponsible, careless and plain cruel, they do manage to instill many important qualities unto their children. Rex and Rose Mary had many difficult situations throughout Jeanette’s memoir; however, they ultimately did manage to teach Jeanette and her siblings the importance of independence and resourcefulness. They also taught their children how to adapt in new and difficult environments, as well as how to persevere through difficulties that they could and have encountered. Another important lesson that Rex and Rose Mary instilled in their children was the importance of learning and experience. Throughout the memoir, Jeanette proves that regardless of her unique and unconventional childhood, Rex and Rose Mary Walls really tried their best to be good parents.
Although unusual, Jeanette’s childhood and parents taught her valuable life lessons, such as independence and resourcefulness. The Walls children’s difficult childhood proved to be invaluable as it taught them how to be self-sufficient and how to overcome difficulties that they may encounter. Jeanette learned at a young age the importance of independence. Walls states, “Mom says I’m mature and lets me cook for myself a lot” (Walls 18). She learned at age three that if she wanted or needed to eat, she would need to learn, even a simple task, by herself. Although neglectful, that is one important life lesson that Rose Mary taught her. According to Rex and Rose Mary’s parenting style, independence was a very important skill to learn. Although Rex did not show it, he was a very loving father who had high hopes for his children. He knew that to be successful, his children would need to learn on their own. When teaching Jeanette how to swim, he tells her “if you don’t want to sink you better figure out how to swim” (Walls 66). This statement could have been a metaphor for the difficulties he knew that she’d encounter throughout her lifetime. Problem solving was another attribute that was learned by the Walls children. Whether or not it was by necessity, the children learned how to problem solve. As a result of the Walls family’s struggles, Jeanette and Lori had to find a solution, and survive on what little food they had. When the family ran out of food completely, Lori decided to eat the only thing they had, Margarine. Lori says, “Mix it with sugar. Tastes just like frosting” (Walls 68). Although it may have been a last measure, the children did learn to problem solve throughout their difficult childhood. The struggles they had encountered ultimately taught them invaluable and commendable qualiti...