The Theory Romeo’s Mental Illness in the Love Story of Romeo and Juliet

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 To start off,There are many different factors that support the theory Romeo had a mental illness. There are different reasons that support the theory. Psychoanalysis, Gender roles, and Societal Norms give reasons why he could have bipolar disorder or depression. These all have different effects on Romeo and shape his mind in a way he could have different mental illnesses.

First, psychoanalysis and behaviorism played an important role in Romeo’s thought process and actions. Psychoanalysis is “a method of modern psychotherapy that can be very useful for people who are struggling with longstanding difficulties.’’  Behaviorism emphasizes scientific and objective methods of investigation. Which is basically just how a person acts bases on how they process things or their genetics. Romeo has societal norms and gender roles that contribute to the way his brain processes things. For example, soon after Romeo met Juliet he fell in love with her; Which is the way other teens his age acted since marrying young was accustomed in this time frame. The Nature vs. Nurture article states, “The nature vs nurture debate within psychology is concerned with the extent to which particular aspects of behavior are a product of genetic or characteristics.’’ Romeo was brought up where you are married in the early years of adolescence. This proves his mindset was marrying a woman very soon after he firsts meet her, even if she isn’t perfect.

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To add on, Romeo’s peers’ mind sets don’t allow Romeo to show true emotion without being teased. Romeo’s relationships with his friends were not healthy. He was made fun of for expressing any feeling; Which can also reflect on the gender norms in society in that time period. The Romeo and Juliet play stated: “Take our good meaning, for our judgement sits, five times in that ere once in our fine wits.’’ He was showing affection for Juliet,but was teased for it. Societal norms in this period were to marry for the meaning to have kids, whether you really loved this person or not. Romeo and Juliet were young and loved each other, which contradicted what was the norm. ‘’Men were masculine, they were not ruled by emotion.’’  Societal Norms and Gender roles also contributed to this theory.

Moreover, Romeo made many impulsive decisions with Juliet, which lead to heartbreak easily. Studies show teen brains aren’t fully developed, which can lead to impulsive decisions. “Risky behavior is a normal part of development and reflects a biologically driven need for exploration.”  This supports that Romeo makes decisions without fully thinking it through. For example, Romeo and Juliet plan to get married after only knowing each other for a little over 12 hours. “Hence will I to my ghostly friar’s close cell, His help to crave my dear hap to tell.” Just after meeting Juliet, Romeo forgets about the past girl he had loved. These impulsive decisions lead to heart break very quickly for Romeo. These decisions are bases off that Romeo is bipolar, with highs and lows.

Coupled with, another aspect to this theory is that Romeo has been suicidal for many years, trying to find love. Juliet is also forced to marry and is longing for true love, which causes her to be depressed too. Both teens made impulsive choices trying to feel better. Romeo tells Friar Lawrence “I love rich Capulet’s daughter. I Love her, and she loves me.’’ Even after only knowing each other for less than 12 hours. They are both quick to jump into something that can bring them joy. This shows later in the book that it was a very impulse decision by the two families fighting. In the end of the book both families are grieving the loss of their children, which was completely preventable.

To sum up, Romeo in fact had a mental illness. Psychoanalysis showed scientifical evidence that Romeo’s life around him made him make certain decisions. That’s where gender roles and societal norms comes into play. Gender Roles made things even harder on Romeo since it was more girly to show emotion. Romeo was bipolar and depressed, and his depression lead him to killing himself. Not only were these illnesses a factor, but Juliet also played a role in Romeo’s lead to suicide. Both suicides were impulsive acts, which is another thing teens their age can’t control.

All in all, there is enough evidence to support that Romeo has a mental illness. There are multiple factors that played a role in such illnesses. Psychoanalysis, Gender roles, and Societal Norms give reasons why he could have bipolar disorder or depression. Romeo’s decisions with Juliet also played a role in the outcome. These all have different effects on Romeo and shape his mind in a way that lead to suicide.           

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