In the Diary of Anne Frank, we get to see Anne change from a child to a woman during her two years in hiding at the Secret Annex. Anne matured mentally and grew in knowledge during her time in hiding. Her difficult situation was made more complex by her puberty.
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She had difficult relationships with her family and The Van Daan family. She starts off her diary as a sensitive but silly thirteen-year-old that was full of life and optimism. By the end of the diary, we barely recognize the Anne we knew from the first diary entries. Her changes are complicated and cover many elements of her personality. There is a definite contrast in her levels of maturity from the beginning of the diary to the end of the diary.
As Anne matures emotionally and physically, she gets her first period, she begins to recognize her shift from childhood to adolescence. Her thinking becomes more sophisticated. One of the biggest changes seen in Anne’s diary is her feelings for Peter van Daan, a boy that was hiding with her at the Secret Annex. When she first meets Peter, she finds him to be shy, awkward, lazy, an obnoxious dope. She was an arrogant, wild, mean-spirited child. In the beginning they have no real connection except for the dreadful situations that have brought them together. Over time she learns to endure him.
Anne starts showing a more sensitive side and a willingness to be more open. They work on getting to know each other and develop a mutual attraction. His interest in her inspires her to reciprocate and their relationship changes for a short time. It is a short romance due to Anne’s disappointment with Peters satisfaction with mediocrity. They agree not to fight and keep the peace for everyone’s sanity since they must continue living together. This shows great growth on her part and a total contrast to her earlier self.
Anne’s less sensitive side is apparent in the first part of the diary when she writes about her mother. Anne was emotionally distant, and totally unkind. She finds fault with her mother in every aspect. She has a lack of respect and displeasure for her mother. At the beginning of the diary she refers to her as mummy and later calls her mother. She feels her mom lacks sensitivity and real motherliness-a lack of sweetness and tidiness. The longer they hide in the Annex the more distant they grow.
Over time she became less ignorant and started acknowledging her own mistakes and understood why her mother acted the way she did and why she was treated the way she was treated. As she matured and calmed down, she was able to see things from her mom’s perspective. She realized her mom loved her and actually loved her back.
Anne changed immensely during her time in the Annex. Her behavior evolved in a positive way, even though the times were hard, and she grew up in a confined area without normal surroundings that most children require. She grew from a carefree, selfish, typical lack of respect thirteen-year-old into a caring young adult who sees both sides of every situation.
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