Diagnosing Holden With Depression by Jenna stango

The book The Catcher in the Rye was written by J. D. Salinger and published on July 16, 1951. Holden deals with a lot of things as a teenager and struggles as he is growing up. Holden should be diagnosed with depression. Depression is a mood disorder that can affect how you feel, think and handle daily activities. Holden has always had these moments when he becomes very sad and has suicidal thoughts. Holden experiences sadness and suicidal thoughts throughout the book which are both symptoms of depression.

The first symptom that Holden exhibits is sadness. From the article on depression, a symptom stated was persistent sad, anxious, or "empty" mood. Evidence from the book was a quote that said "What i was really handling around for, I was trying to feel some kind of good bye. I mean i have left schools and places i didn't even know i was leaving them. I hate that I don't care. If its a sad goodbye or bad goodbye but when i leave a place I like to know i'm leaving it. If you cant you feel worse (Salinger 21)". Holden can barley even handle saying goodbye to somebody. This shows how Holden has this "empty" feeling.

The second symptom that Holden exhibits is suicidal thoughts. From the article on depression, it stated that a symptom was thoughts of death, suicide, or suicide attempts. A quote from the book that provides evidence says, "There was James castle laying right on the stone steps and all. He was dead, and his teeth and blood were all over the place. That's all I could think about though (Salinger 170)". James Castles got himself into a plight. Holden thought about James Castle and the unsightly scene when he commit suicide. James was in Holden' s head and he remembers exactly every detail of what he saw. Overall, the thoughts of both death and suicide has come close to Holden.

Holden experiences having symptoms of sadness and suicidal thoughts throughout his teenage years which are both symptoms of depression. Holden often deals with being sad, for example, he cant even say goodbye to somebody which shows how he can be having that "empty" feeling. Holden has suicidal thoughts because he thinks about death and suicide. This is when he thinks about James castle and remembering every detail of the incident.

National Institute of Mental Health. “Depression.” National Institute of Mental Health, Oct. 2016, https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/topics/depression/index.shtml. Accessed 29 Jan. 2017.

Salinger, J.D. The Catcher in the Rye. Little, Brown, and Company, 1951.

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