Melinda Sordino starts out her first-year twelvemonth ( 9th class ) in Merry Weather High School. She is being called as a “ informer ” for naming the constabulary to a house party in last twelvemonth ‘s summer. Her existent ground for naming the constabulary was she was raped by Andy Evans, a senior, at the party. She is excessively traumatized by the event, which in bend makes her deaf-and-dumb person ; speech production has become a load to her. Therefore, no 1 knows the truth and misunderstood her. In school, she has to cover with societal rejections by her equals, including being shunned by her friends, Nicole, Ivy and her best friend, Rachel Bruin. The lone new friend that she has is her lab spouse, Dave Petrakis. Because of the rejections she faces, she becomes a lone wolf in school.

Melinda is besides unable to state her parents about the experience as her parents are excessively busy with their ain affairs. Her female parent is a busy businesswoman ; her male parent is unemployed, but besides does non pass much clip with her girl. Even though they notice a alteration in their girl, like her behavior and her classs, they are still unable to find the ground, and think that it is her attitude job. Life starts to alter when Melinda starts her art category with Mr. Freeman. Melinda starts to show her feelings through art. With the aid of Mr. Freeman and Dave, Melinda easy regains her assurance, even though she sometimes still thinks back the traumatic event. As she overcomes her frights, she eventually has the bravery to state Rachel, who is holding relationship with Andy Evans, the truth. Soon after that, Andy comes to endanger Melinda when he knows that she reveals the truth to Rachel. Melinda is able to contend back. At last, she is able to state her female parent the traumatic event openly.

Description of Character

Melinda Sordino is a 13 twelvemonth old, 9th grader analyzing in Merry Weather High School. She went to a house party last summer with her three good friends. Unfortunately, she got raped by a senior, Andy Evans. She had no pick but to name off the party by naming the constabulary, which in bend arrested everyone in the party. This event has caused everyone to detest her and labels her as a “ informer ” . She has non told anyone about this and populating with erudite weakness because she is rejected by her equals. From what her parents say in the film, Melinda was a bright pupil and a happy kid, but she does non even state her parents about it. She gets irritated when her female parent thinks that her mutism is her attitude job.

In this film she uses sardonic temper to demo her interior ideas about her milieus, for illustration, she says, “ My English instructor has no face, I call her ‘Hair Woman ‘ , ” and “ It ‘s impossible to listen to Miss Kane ( Biology teacher ) . Her voice sounds like an engine that wo n’t turn over. Plus she laughs at her ain gag. ”

She finds comfort and support in her art category, where her twelvemonth long assignment is to pull a tree. This has played a major function in her life. She uses an abandoned shop room in her school as her art aggregations. All of her aggregations are trees that she has drawn. This has started to alter her life. For case, she eventually confronts to Heather that she does non like her in the first topographic point, and she is besides able to contend back when Andy is endangering her. Besides, Melinda still cares about her ex-best friend, Rachel, who is dating with Andy Evans. She fears that Rachel will endure the same destiny as she is. She tried her best to interrupt her barrier of speech production and eventually confronts to Rachel about it.

Contented Analysis

I believe the character, Melinda Sordino, should be diagnosed with Posttraumatic Stress Disorder ( PTSD ) with selective muteness. Harmonizing to the American Psychiatric Association ( DSM-IV-TR ) , to be diagnosed with PTSD, “ the individual has to hold experienced, witnessed/ was confronted with an event or events that involved existent or threatened decease or serious hurt or a menace to the physical unity of ego or others, and the individual ‘s response involved intense fright, weakness, or horror. ” As for selective muteness,

Colman ( 2009 ) stated that it is a mental upset of childhood or stripling whose indispensable characteristic is a relentless failure to talk in a certain societal state of affairss in which speech production is expected, such as at school or among equals, despite a proved ability to talk in other state of affairss. To fulfill the diagnostic standards the behaviour must interfere with educational or occupational accomplishment or with societal interaction and must non be attributable to a deficiency of cognition or installation with the linguistic communication required in the specified state of affairss, or to embarrassment about a communicating upset such as stuttering ( p.680 ) .

In this film, Melinda fulfills the basic standards of PTSD, in which she got raped by Andy Evans ( traumatic event ) , in a house party. At first, before the colza, Melinda does non believe that she is really with Andy – he is a celebrated, fine-looking senior in her high school-and she besides has some involvements in him, so they dance together and snog together in the party. After that, Melinda starts to recognize something is traveling incorrect when Andy starts to do out with her in his auto, in which Andy cheats her to travel for a drive. Melinda tries to force off, but Andy is excessively strong. In fright of her life, she got raped with an intense fright and helpless.

Harmonizing to the American Psychiatric Association ( DSM-IV-TR ) , a individual with PTSD should hold reexperienced the traumatic event in a few ways. In this instance, Melinda has fulfilled two symptoms in this standard. The first symptom is “ perennial and intrusive distressing remembrances of the event, including images, ideas, or perceptual experience ” ( American Psychiatric Association, 2000 ) . Melinda frequently has remembrance of the traumatic event. For case, she thinks back the wake of the colza, where she was really dying and wanted to happen a phone ( to name the constabulary ) in the party. This remembrance takes topographic point in a lavatory, where she is pass overing off a discoloration on her blouse, after she gets jeered at by her equals. Another illustration is when she receives crayons and a pulling book from her parents as a Christmas gift, she thinks back the clip where she returned place, and could non happen her parents wake of the colza. Another symptom is the remembrance of straitening dreams of the event. Melinda dreams about the point where she is raped by the senior. She about screams when she eventually finds out that it is her female parent, who is waking her up.

The following standard is changeless turning away of any stimulations that is associated to the traumatic event ( American Psychiatric Association, 2000 ) . Melinda fulfills three symptoms, which are avoiding conversations that associated with the injury, avoiding activities that may elicit remembrance of the injury and the feeling of separation and alienation from others ( American Psychiatric Association, 2000 ) . Melinda ever avoids Andy in school. However, there is one scene in the film, where Andy is inquiring Melinda where Rachel is, shows hurt in Melinda. Andy stands by the Art category entryway, nearing nearer to Melinda. He says,

“ Have you seen Rachel ( silence ) Bruin? ( silence ) She supposes to run into me ( silence ) Hello? Anybody place? Are you deaf? ( silence ) I was believing thataˆ¦ ”

Melinda goes soundless all the manner. Besides, she besides avoid traveling to Dave ‘s house. Melinda says,

“ Dave Petrakis invited me over to make lab prep. I said no. No, thanks. I merely, I ca n’t. ”

She is likely afraid that she might experience hurt and worried, when she is entirely with him and besides it would remind her about the event. Following, she besides feels alienation from others. This is where she says,

“ There ‘s no point speaking to my ex-friends. Our kin the ‘The Plain Janes ‘ has been absorbed by rival groups. Nicole hangs out with ‘the Jocks ‘ . Rachel went all ‘Euro ‘ . Ivy straddles two crowds, ‘the Goths ‘ and ‘the Marthas ‘ . And there ‘s me, I ‘m clanless. ”

The last standard is the addition of rousing which is non present before the injury. When she sees Rachel goes towards Andy in a hoops game, her bosom round goes fast, hard to take a breath and trembles. Apart from that, the manner that she describes the instructors and besides the look that she responses, shows how she is irritated by them. For case, she calls her English instructor, ‘Hair Women ‘ , who has uncombed hair, and avoids oculus contact with her pupils. She shows a spot of choler when she is called to sit at the forepart row, by Mr. Neck ( her history instructor ) . She even criticized the topic as follows,

“ We ‘re analyzing American history the 9th clip in nine old ages. Every twelvemonth they say we ‘re traveling to acquire right up to the present, but we ever get stuck in the industrial revolution. ”

The chief behavioural response after the injury that Melinda shows is selective muteness. As stated in the definition above, one ‘s behavior “ must interfere with educational or occupational accomplishment aˆ¦ must non be attributable to a deficiency of cognition or installation with the linguistic communication required in the specified state of affairss, or to embarrassment about a communicating upset such as bumbling ” ( Colman, 2009 ) . For Melinda, this behaviour has affected her classs in school. Due to her muteness, she asks Dave to assist her to present a address – which is non under the demand of Mr. Neck, which is to present the address of her ain — for her excess recognition. That is why this has made Mr. Neck fed up of her. This scene is illustrated below,

Dave: “ The Suffragettes fought for their right to talk. They were attacked, arrested, and thrown in gaol for make bolding to make what they wanted to make. Like them, Melinda is willing to stand up for what she believes, that no 1 should be forces to give addresss. ”

Mr. Neck: “ What is this? Melinda has to present the study to the category as portion of the assignment. “ aˆ¦ “ When I say unwritten, I mean unwritten. Now you ( Dave ) , sit down! And you ( Melinda ) , read that study. Open your oral cavity, Sordino. Open your darn oral cavity! ”

After this she is sent to the school principal ‘s office. This scene besides shows her muteness, where her parents do non look to cognize what went incorrect with her, like her female parent says, “ Oh, for the love of God, open your oral cavity, Melinda ” and “ She ‘s deaf-and-dumb person. She ‘s deaf-and-dumb person. She ‘s non stating anything. “ Other than this, Melinda besides claims that talking hurts her. This scene is illustrated where Ivy ( ex-friend ) is conveying her to the nurse office. She wants to state something to her, but she claims that her pharynx is dry and injuries. She besides has learned weakness where she says, “ All that dirt you hear on Television about communicating and showing feelings is a prevarication. No 1 truly cares what you have to state. I wonder how long it would take for anyone to detect if I merely stopped speaking. ”

Overall, in this film, I believe it portrays a whole twelvemonth life event of Melinda because it shows the first twenty-four hours of school until Christmas. Hence, Melinda ‘s symptoms have been traveling on for more than a month. Therefore, I believe that Melinda should be diagnosed with PTSD with selective muteness.


This film is based on a same rubric name novel, which is written by Laurie Halse Anderson in 2001 ( Kapavik & A ; Moore, 2005 ) . I think this is a good film to exemplify what a miss is being through after a day of the month colza. I think most of the victims are non as brave like Melinda, who is able to stand up and talk about the colza event. I believe there are a batch of adolescent misss, who are victims of raping, still do non hold the bravery to state others the truth for months even for old ages. Therefore, many of them suffered from undiagnosed PTSD. It is non just for them to be treated as an castaway by their equals and besides to be neglected by their parents and besides by instructors. By seeing Melinda easy recovers from PTSD, I wonder art therapy could be a good intervention for people non merely suffers from PTSD, but besides depression every bit good. I think art is a good alternate manner of showing feelings that can non be described verbally. Hence, this therapy can be considered alternatively of giving antidepressant to stamp down depression.


I think this film helps pupils to cognize the psychological procedure of a PTSD sick person ‘s life. Furthermore, this film about illustrates a existent life state of affairs of a miss ‘s life after a day of the month colza. It so brings out the nucleus symptoms of the upset as mentioned supra good.

I think this film tries to stress selective muteness can happen after a traumatic event, even though this status is frequently seen in kindergartners, who has problem accommodating societal state of affairs in school ( Wicks-Nelson & A ; Israel, 2009 ; Mash & A ; Wolfe, 2010 ; Davison, et. al. , 2004 ) .

There is a instance survey done in twelvemonth 2009, a 4 twelvemonth old miss was diagnosed with PTSD and selective muteness after a Canis familiaris bite. She was attacked by a neighbour ‘s dog one twenty-four hours, and was sent to a infirmary by the Canis familiaris ‘s proprietor. At the 2nd twenty-four hours of hospitalization, the kid was in down temper and showed mild backdown from contacts with others. From that on, she refused to take part any conversation with anyone, and used merely gestures to pass on when in the place scene. Besides, she besides displayed symptoms of PTSD like recurrent memories when questioned about Canis familiariss and reluctance to play with toy Canis familiariss. Psychiatrist used six months to easy recover her comfort in speech production ( Anyfantakis et. Al, 2009 ) . Hence, this can be added to the pupils ‘ cognition that some symptoms in PTSD can be comorbid with other upset.