Theme Of Suicide In The Night, Mother

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Solving the mystery behind the suicide in Norman’s ‘night, Mother In the play the ‘night, Mother, by Marsha Norman, the main character, Jessie Cates, shocks her mother by announcing she will kill herself later that evening. Over the next few hours, the two women argue fiercely. Thelma struggles to convince Jessie to live even as Jessie explains her reasons for wanting to end her life. But Thelma’s efforts are unsuccessful because Jessie has such clear reasons for her suicide. First, Jessie sees suicide as a way to gain control over the epilepsy that has ruined her life, a ruin she cannot salvage. Secondly, her suicide may be a way to punish Thelma for using her as a servant, for keeping vital secrets from her, and being incapable of any real …show more content…
Throughout the play Thelma is seen has a constant force that bickers at Jessie. Due to Jessie’s failed marriage to ex-husband Cecil, Jessie is forced to move in with her mother. Thelma creates the illusion for Jessie that she is incapable of doing things on her own. She has Jessie wash her clothes, clean the house, remind her to take her medicine, cook meals, and do her nails every week or so. Consequently, making Jessie feel as though she is nothing more than a servant for her mother and adding to her reason for suicide. Yet, when Jessie conveys the issue to Thelma as one of the problems contributing to her unhappiness Thelma tells Jessie, “You don't have to do another thing in this house if you don't want to. You don't have to take care of me, Jessie” (22). Jessie then realizes that Thelma was, “just [ has] been letting [her] do it so [she would] have something to do” (22). To make matters worse, Thelma also reveals to Jessie that she has been keeping vital secrets from her. The first secret pertains to the actual time of when Jessie’s ‘fits’ started. Thelma tells Jessie that, “the horse wasn't the first time, Jessie. You had a fit when you were five years old;” causing Jessie to resent her mother even more (44). Thelma not only ruined Jessie’s chance of living a normal life through early treatment, but she also plagued her marriage before it began. Thelma also kept why Jessie’s ex – husband left her. Thelma explains to Jessie that he had another girl, so instead of telling her earlier, Thelma lets Jessie blame the marriage on her faults, and later creating feelings of remorse amongst Jessie and her mother. Lastly, Jessie feels no connection towards her mother. Jessie feels as though Thelma is lacking as a parent and that she preferred the quietness of her father to the nagging of Thelma. Jessie feels that suicide will not only punish Thelma because it will force her to be alone and do things on

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