Diary of a Young Girl

by: Anne Frank

Edith Frank

Anne has very little sympathy for her mother during their tumultuous years in the annex, and she has few kind words to say about her, particularly in the earlier entries. Anne feels that her mother is cold, critical, and uncaring, that they have very little in common, and that her mother does not know how to show love to her children. Like Margot, Mrs. Frank is mentioned almost exclusively in instances when she is the source of Anne’s anger and frustration. Anne rarely comments on her mother’s positive traits.

Later in her diary, however, Anne attempts to look at her mother’s life as a wife and mother from a more objective viewpoint. As Anne gets older and gains a clearer perspective, she begins to regret her quick, petty judgments of her mother. Anne has more sympathetic feelings for Mrs. Frank and begins to realize how Mrs. Frank’s gender and entrapment in the annex have created many obstacles for her. Despite her new perspective, Anne continues to feel estranged from her sentimental, critical mother and irrevocably deems her unfit. It seems that Mrs. Frank’s inability to provide emotional support for her daughter stems in part from the stress and pain of the persecution and forced confinement. Because the diary consists of only Anne’s thoughts and perspectives, we are never able to gain much insight into Mrs. Frank’s own personal thoughts or feelings.