Depression in The Catcher in the Rye

Essay by EssaySwap ContributorCollege, Undergraduate February 2008

download word file, 4 pages 5.0

Depression is defined as an illness that can interfere with one?s ability to function properly because of persistent feeling of despair and sadness. Teens are as susceptible as adults in having this illness. Statistics shows that approximately 4 out of 100 teenagers suffer from serious depression each year. When you have depression, you experience problems with grades, relationships with family and friends, alcohol and drugs, sex, and taking over your behaviors. Holden goes through all these problems. But first, there are two major types of depression: major depression, the sad kind and manic depression, where you tend to be reckless and being speeded- up.

The symptoms for major depression are frequent sadness and crying, hopelessness, decreased interest in activities, having low energy, social isolation and poor communication, low self esteem, increased anger and hostility, difficulty with handling relationships, physical illness such as headaches, inability to concentrate, poor performance at school, change in eating and sleeping pattern, running away, having thoughts about death, and alcohol and drug abuse.

For manic depression, the symptoms are extreme mood swings, abnormal excitability, sexual promiscuousness, delusions of intense anger when unable to carry out a wild scheme, and excessive activity. Now that we know the different signs and symptoms of the two major types of depression, we would be able to determine what category Holden belongs to.

Diagnosis Holden most likely demonstrates the symptoms of major depression. Allie?s death, his younger brother, has a great impact on his sudden change of behavior. Having to deal with a death of a loved one is usually one of the causes of depression. ?The more I thought about my gloves and my yellowness, the more depressed I got, and I decided while I was walking and all to stop off and have a drink somewhere.? (page...