Jacqueline van Maarsen is supposedly my best friend, but I’ve never had a real friend. At first I thought Jacque would be one, but I was badly mistaken.
In Anne’s second diary entry, she writes about her various friends at school and her relationships with them. She states very clearly here that despite having a best friend, she doesn’t consider anyone to be a true friend she can confide in. From the very beginning, Anne reveals her deep loneliness and the need to express her feelings in some way, which turns out to be via the diary.
I don’t think I’ll ever feel at home in this house, but that doesn’t mean I hate it. It’s more like being on vacation in some strange pension. Kind of an odd way to look at life in hiding, but that’s how things are. The Annex is an ideal place to hide in. It may be damp and lopsided, but there’s probably not a more comfortable hiding place in all of Amsterdam.
After Anne and her family have been in the Annex for a few days, she writes about how she feels about being in hiding. While most teenagers would probably be heartbroken to have to leave home and be cooped up inside all the time, Anne adjusts remarkably well to her new living situation. Her reaction shows that she is already familiar with the dangers of war and knows that her circumstances could be much worse.
Harsh words and shouts are constantly being flung at my head, though I’m absolutely not used to it. According to the powers that be, I’m supposed to grin and bear it. But I can’t! I have no intention of taking their insults lying down.
After a few months in the Annex, Anne gets sick of constantly being criticized by her family and the van Daans. Anne knows that she is not supposed to talk back to adults, something Margot would never do. However, she refuses to back down from a fight or walk away from an insult. This entry sheds light on Anne’s feisty personality.
Daddy says that if Mother isn’t feeling well or has a headache, I should volunteer to help her, but I’m not going to because I don’t love her and don’t enjoy doing it. I can imagine Mother dying someday, but Daddy’s death seems inconceivable. It’s very mean of me, but that’s how I feel. I hope Mother will never read this or anything else I’ve written.
After fighting with her mother, Edith, Anne writes about the contempt she feels toward her mother. Even though she says she does not love her mother and can imagine life without her, she immediately writes that she hopes her mother never discovers her feelings. Her desire to protect her mother from these unfavorable feelings shows that she does feel some affection for Edith and somewhat understands the severity of such a statement.
I feel wicked sleeping in a warm bed, while somewhere out there my dearest friends are dropping from exhaustion or being knocked to the ground.
After Mr. Dussel arrives at the Annex and brings news of the war and the outside world, Anne thinks of how lucky she and her family are to be hidden away safely. Even though Anne’s situation does not seem enviable, she knows things could be much worse, which shows her relative maturity for a thirteen-year-old.
I can’t let them see my doubts, or the wounds they’ve inflicted on me. I couldn’t bear their sympathy or their good-humored derision. It would only make me want to scream even more.
Here, Anne writes about how tired she has become of being criticized by her family and other people in the Annex. She wants to cry and scream to convey her frustration but knows she cannot show her vulnerability lest they see her as a child and perhaps criticize her even more. Her need to keep these emotions suppressed represents one example of how she hides her true identity from those around her.
I continued to sit with the open book in my hand and wonder why I was filled with so much anger and hate that I had to confide it all to you.
In the beginning of 1944, Anne writes about her reaction to seeing some of her diary entries from years ago and the harsh words she used to write about her mother. The Anne she sees in those diary entries feels completely foreign to her. Since Anne has had so much time to reflect on herself and her own flaws, she has grown into a more mature, thoughtful person.
I look back at that Anne Frank as a pleasant, amusing, but superficial girl, who has nothing to do with me.
Anne reflects on how much she has changed since she first went into hiding. When she first got her diary, she wrote about boys and what other people thought of her. Now that she has endured the suffering of war and grown up a bit, she does not recognize her old self. Her development indicates that going through the trauma of war forced her to mature faster than she otherwise would have.
I believe that in the course of the next century the notion that it’s a woman’s duty to have children will change and make way for the respect and admiration of all women, who bear their burdens without complaint or a lot of pompous words!
This excerpt concludes a diary entry Anne wrote about the unfairness of women being treated as inferior to men. She believes that women should be honored for going through the trauma of childbirth as soldiers are honored but that bearing and raising children should not be their only reason for living. Anne proves herself to be a very modern thinker for the time.