Tangerine Questions and Answers
by Edward Bloor

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How would you describe Paul's mom in "Tangerine"?

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trayducateng14 eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2007

write14 answers

starTop subject is Literature

I think, too, that she is what a lot of mothers are when it comes to their children; Naive and dillusiional--both of the parents actually. This was most evident when the grandparents came to town under the "December 3, later" section. It states, "Mom and Dad took turns talking, just as they had at the meeting. Grandmom and Grandpop didn't seem surprised by any of what they heard. They took it all without even blinking." "When it was over, when we had told them every bad thing there was to tell...Grandmom put her hand on her heart, sighed deeply and said, '"You know what I'm going to tell you, Caroline...you're paying now for what you didn't do back then..." The grandfather, retorting the Dad's attempt to protect Erik again, stated, "Wedidtell you so. Erick did need help. He needed a doctor's help." The father's reply shows that he and the mom, both, were in denial about the needs of their son: "No. Erik did not need a doctor's help. He did not need drugs. He did not need to be one of those medicated kids who float around all the time like they're underwater."

Unfortunately, the they clearly ignored the fact that Erik had a mental issue that needed to be cared for. Ironically, some parents in real society seem to overmedicate. The difficulty is trying to find a balance.

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ladyvols1 eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2008

write1,485 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, History, and Science

Paul's mother is a controlling woman.  She is over protective about some things, but often acts as If Erick is her only child rather than Erick an Paul.  When there is an injury on the football field because of lightening, she holds a meeting and wants the practice times to be changed.  When Paul makes the soccer team, she makes sure his IEP is transfered to his new school and he is removed from the soccer team because school insurance won't cover him.  She is always having people over to her home for one type of meeting or another to try and control events in her community. However she has lost sight of the control she needs.  She and Paul's father have lied to Paul for seven years about what happened to his eyes.  They have protected one son at the risk of harming the other one.

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mcmahon7 | Student

I would say that his mom is a lot like most mothers. She wants to protect her children from everything outside of her home. She will do anything to do this, even if it ends up not being the best option.