A family is a social set up that embraces a common bond of oneness and support among the members, for parents need to take care and look after their children, and siblings to uphold love and concern as a virtue amongst themselves in the home so as to live together harmoniously for easy coexistence. A family that has members that do not understand and uphold one another values and beliefs will disintegrate and lack the warmth that is needed to support each other, and such a family shall experience break ups and tragedy.
Bechdel’s novel ‘the fun home’ indicates the struggling and challenges experienced by a young girl in her parent’s home which had secretive moves that others did not know. The title of the novel centers around the home set up of the author whose family was involved in a funeral business hence the title fun home. The author indicates that her home was more of a funeral home than a joyous one. Funeral and death in the literature suggest a dark cloud of sadness and sorrow, which shows the background of the author during her childhood stage as she continued to live and grow together with her parents. This reflects that life was not an easy task at home with the presence of mourners who came to see their father for funeral arrangements. This was symbolic of the death of love and warmth in Bruce family who was the father of Bechdel. The business that was done in the house reflected how the same family had died in its tenderness, love and affection which were portrayed through the harsh conditions between Bechdel and her father Bruce.
Bechdel indicates that her father was a first-hand disciplinarian who is reflected to be strict and abused the author during her childhood lifestyles. The story explores a relationship between father and daughter that were a total contrast each other, which caused opposing and repelling forces between them (Bechdel 15). It is at this growing age of nineteen years that she discovers her sexual identity as a lesbian. She goes out and shares with her friends and family on her sexual experience with her girlfriend while her father who was gay kept it secret and even avoided to talk about it. The two are shown going through a similar sexual identity of gay and lesbian but they become different in their approaches towards their sexual adventure. Bechdel felt comfortable with her lifestyle as a lesbian while her father having sexual encounters with young men, he still does not accept himself as gay. He may have wanted to preserve and protect his dealings away from his family and did not want to come out and declare himself as gay since he knew as a married man and father it would have affected his home. However, eventually it was discovered, and Bruce felt low about it. He was later divorced by his wife after whom he was involved in a crash accident. It is unclear if he committed suicide because of his family discovering his sexual identity or because his wife had discovered, as it remains a paradox.
In analyzing the above, Bruce is symbolically an example of the married couples that may be involved in the minority sexual group of gay people. It shows the challenges and problems such people go through so as to overcome and move on with their sexual identity. Some of these people keep their identity out of fear of victimization from their families and loved ones. They find themselves at the crossroads not knowing what and where to follow in discovering themselves. On the hand, the author uses herself as an example of lesbians and gay minority groups who are single and he experience they go through in finding their sexual identity. Ashe represents the zeal and passion of the young generation in fighting against segregation of the minority in the society. It is ironical that members of the same household are trapped in sexual orientations that were in a complex relationship style of father and daughter. It is has been argued that when Bechdel had not discovered her sexual identity she felt tom run away from her father, however, when she came to realize herself who she was, it is shown that she was willing to reach to him and open to him everything more so when Bechdel discovered tat her father also was of a sexual minority (Bechdel 98). This shows tat she felt like him and discovered that they lived in a similar world where a daughter wants to come out and help her father discover and accept his sexual identity, but, unfortunately, the father did not embrace this move.
This is an indication of a family that does not have time to embrace each others values and beliefs. Relatives should develop a feeling and concern for each together as this will enable it to develop deep ties tat will be leaning pillars of members in their difficult time. Human beings need someone to understand them and provide a leaning shoulder for someone to lean on. They need an ear to listen to them when they pour out their hearts. This shall enable such a family to live and be knit together in times of need and during their high moments. This was a major cause that drifted this family apart making it run apart and eventually the father and husband of the home to lose his life in an unclear manner. Initially, father and daughter that are, Bruce and Bechdel had some moments that brought them together. This was shown when the author indicates that every time he needed someone to comfort her, she found herself in her father’s arms; a real argument had a similar destiny of their sexual identity. The minority should be encouraged to pursue their dreams in life and should not be condemned and be down looked upon in the community as this makes them hide and feel low.
It is noted that the author does not figure her mother Helen in the story but her dad is shown was one who did her maternal roles. It suggests that the author indicates that her father had a big influence on her adult life. This shows that a family had disintegrated, the family needs the support of both parents that is, mother and father but should not be left as a sole responsibility to one partner. This has shown that a family is a social unit where everyone should be accommodated so as to play his role actively for the growth of the family and indeed a family that lacks a common bond shall disintegrate.