When he looks at his child, an underage girl, he is reminded of the crimes he commits towards other underage children. Therefore, he separates himself from her and turns towards cleaning the house to distract himself from what he has done. Furthermore, this behavior is observed by the reader when he tries to get his family ready for mass (Visual Storytelling 160). The length it takes for him to prepare his family is shown when the mother says, “Mass will be over before we get there,” (Visual Storytelling 160) while they are posing for a picture. This scene tells the reader he is avoiding going to mass by making his family take a long time to get ready and appear perfect for the other people at the service. However, during a regular Catholic mass, people confess their sins to God in hope of forgiveness. However, Alison’s father knows he is sinning by having sex with teenage boys and hiding it from his family. Therefore, he wants to avoid confessing to God because he has not yet confessed to his family.This is why Alison has her mother show the reader how much of mass they are missing, because her father is working so diligently to avoid it. Alsion’s father beats his children to relieve him from his demons through Freud’s psychological defense mechanisms. This defense mechanism is known as acting out. Acting out, as defined by Freud, is, “ performing an extreme behavior in order to express thoughts or feelings the person feels incapable of otherwise expressing,” (15 Common Defense Mechanisms 1). When Alison’s father beats his children, it is when he is frustrated about his sexual desires
Sokolow 3 towards underage teens. One of the panels when he beats his children is shortly after he accuses his children of moving a vase, thereby ruining the house he works to keep perfect for all the wrong reasons (Visual Storytelling 162). Moving an object of his perfect home out of place reminds him of his crimes and why he works to create the perfect home. As a result, he needs to do something to make him forget, such as lashing out at his children. Once he does, he feels relief and goes on to fix his perfect home.
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