Dally and Two Bit have grown up on the streets. They have learned how to fight, use switchblades, watch for Socs, hide their emotions (especially fear), and trust no one but Greasers.
Dally and Two Bit haven't, however, learned how to live in a non-violent world. They want to learn how to live without fear in a neighborhood without gangs, relate to people, trust, and even love. They want to learn how to hold a respectable job and make a full life for themselves instead of just trying to survive.
As long as they are trapped in the world of gangs and violence, Dally and Two Bit's energy has to be given to surviving, sharpening their skills so they don't get hurt and so they can protect each other. Trust, stability, and a bright future are almost out of reach.