Glass Castle: Social Issues

By: Alejandra Rigg

Mental illness

"A mental health condition isn’t the result of one event. Research suggests multiple, interlinking causes. Genetics, environment and lifestyle combine to influence whether someone develops a mental health condition." This qoute is so true because in the book it explains why Jeannette's parents are the way they act.


Civil Disobedience is the refusal to comply with certain laws or to pay taxes and fines, as a peaceful form of political protest. The artical says, "Civil disobedience is a public, non-violent and conscientious breach of law undertaken with the aim of bringing about a change in laws or government policies." This also describes Jeannette's parents, because they don't follow all the laws.


Living with an alcoholic is a family affair. Because it subjects all members of a household to constant stress and fears of various kinds, it has often been referred to as a “family illness.” This quote explains Jeannette's life style at home, because she also lives with an acoholic.


On May 20, 2009, President Obama signed the Homeless Emergency Assistance and Rapid Transition to Housing (HEARTH) Act of 2009. This program would have helped Jeannette's family from so much pain and struggle. The Homeless Emergency Assistance and Rapid Transition to Housing (HEARTH) Act would have provieded them a home with insulation, food and good enviornment to live in.


Each state has its own statute(s) providing for the termination of parental rights. The most common reasons for involuntary termination include:

  • Severe or chronic abuse or neglect
  • Sexual abuse
  • Abuse or neglect of other children in the household
  • Abandonment
  • Long-term mental illness or deficiency of the parent(s)
  • Long-term alcohol or drug-induced incapacity of the parent(s)
  • Failure to support or maintain contact with the child
  • Involuntary termination of the rights of the parent to another child

After reading this we should automatically say that Jeannette's parents should have lost their parential rights a long time ago.


Educational neglect is a parent or guardian's failure to ensure the child attends school as required by law. This is excatly what Jeannette's parents did, because they moved a lot, and they sometimes let their kids skip school (which later became a bad habit).