Chapter 5 Notes from I Never Promised You a Rose Garden

Joanne Greenberg
This section contains 306 words
(approx. 2 pages at 300 words per page)
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I Never Promised You a Rose Garden Chapter 5

When Esther comes to visit Deborah, she meets and talks with Dr. Fried. In an attempt to illuminate Deborah's past, Esther tells the doctor about her own life and the family's situation. She explains that her father, Pop's, immigration to America has affected the entire family. He came to America to get rich and make his family a dynasty, and so his expectations for his children and their children dominated their lives. Pop set all his hopes on Deborah because she was his first grandchild, and she was blonde. He expected her to show the world that he was a success.

But when Deborah was five years old, they learned that she wasn't as perfect as they expected her to be. She had a tumor that had to be removed. After two surgeries and great pain for the little girl, the tumor was gone.

When Deborah was a little older they sent her to a summer camp. It wasn't until she'd been to the camp for three summers that they discovered that the camp was highly anti-Semitic. Deborah also had trouble in school because she didn't make friends easily. To help her daughter out, Esther took the popular girls to the zoo. She would invite the teachers that Deborah had trouble with to tea. Esther did all she could to smooth out the rough spots of Deborah's life, but the girl was still alone.

Topic Tracking: Friendship 1

Esther can't figure out what she and Jacob did wrong to make their daughter sick. Dr. Fried assures her that no one caused Deborah's illness, but she also warns the mother not to lie to Deborah because deceit is intolerable to the mentally ill, Deborah especially.

Topic Tracking: Deceit 4

Deborah still won't see Jacob, so he spies on Esther and their daughter while they're at the movies.

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