In Zindel's The Pigman, what is Lorraine's mother like? 

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Lorraine's mother is a single mom who works fulltime as a hospice nurse. When Lorraine was little, her mother had just gotten a divorce from her cheating husband when he was involved in a car crash and died. Lorraine's mother was never the same after two personally traumatic events happened within a short time period. Since then, she projects her fears and pain onto Lorraine by warning her of the terrible things men do to women. Not only that, but Lorraine's mother makes her daughter feel worthless and ugly. John doesn't like the way Lorraine's mother makes her feel and describes the situation as follows:

"The way her old lady talks you'd think Lorraine needed plastic surgery and seventeen body braces, but if you ask me, all she needs is a little confidence" (19).

John's perspective suggests that Lorraine's mother makes her feel physically unattractive. She also makes Lorraine feel untrustworthy because her mother has trust issues. For example, when Lorraine buys her mother some nylons (with Mr. Pignati's money) she asks her a couple of times where she got the money to buy nylons. Lorraine lies and tells her mother that she saved her lunch money for them. She describes the scene about the nylons and her mother as follows:

"She mulled that over a few seconds, but she had to get to work on time and couldn't devote her full energies to interrogating. She always makes me tell the same story over a week or so later to see if I slip up on any details" (108).

Lorraine's mother has had a hard life and it shows in her relationship with her daughter. She has learned not to trust anyone, she works hard, and she does the best she can with what she has in life, but this makes it very difficult for Lorraine to live with her.

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