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subject = Psychology
title = Kurt Cobain
Psychology 41G Report
Washington, a small town southeast of Seattle is 108 miles long, and outlined
by an endless amount of trailer parks; past them are many acres of timberland,
blemished by stubbly scars, where loggers have been clear cutting. From
east the first thing seen is the unattractive Weyerhauser lumberyard leading
to the Wishkah River.
These days, the streets of Aberdeen, Washington are
looking like empty or boarded up storefronts. Business is booming for only
local pawnshops. One of the biggest growth industries in the country presently
the cultivation of Marijuana and psychedelic mushrooms, which people grow
in order to boost their meager or nonexistent incomes. It wasn?t always this
bad. Aberdeen used to once be a bustling seaport where
sailors used to stop
off at. Truth is, the town used to be one big prostitution centre.
is where on February.20th 1967 Kurt Donald Cobain was born. To homemaker
Wendy Cobain(nee Fradenburg) and mechanic Donald Cobain. His early influences
who soon became mentors to him were,
his mothers siblings Chuck and Mary.
the day of his birth to the day of his death Kurt Cobain
had problems, psychological
and otherwise. The problems just could not leave him alone. The Cobain?s
didn?t live in the best part of Aberdeen and
were not wealthy. They were
basically ?white trash posing as middle class? according to Kurt when asked
about his early childhood upbringing. Kurt?s major problems began at the
age of 8 in 1975. This was when his parents divorced. His mother admits
that both she and Don used the kids(sister Kim 5 at the time of divorce)
in the divorce and fought for custody. It?s been described as that a ?light
went out? in him, a light that he tried to recapture, but couldn?t.
became angered at his parents for not being able to sort out their problems.
Throughout most of his childhood he was ashamed of his parents After the
divorce Kurt continued to live on with his mom in Aberdeen, for a year, but
his mom soon decided that she could not handle him. To cope, she shipped
him off to his dad in Montesano a smaller logging community 20 miles east
of Aberdeen. Even with his dad Kurt was unhappy. They didn?t get along
to well because Don pushed Kurt into sports which Kurt was not good at, which
caused more pressure on Kurt because Don was a jock. Don did not let Kurt
be a kid, he wanted him to be a little adult. He?d get irritated quickly,
and would whack Kurt over the head. One time when Kurt was 6, he threw Kurt
across the room Basically, Kurt had no father figure to look up upon. Despite
all of this Kurt was spoiled by Don and showered with material things that
Don could offer.
Kurt was then shattered again when Don got remarried
in February of 1978. Kurt and his step-mom did not get along. The longer
lived with Don the worse things got. Don was determined to make Kurt
the new family, so he got legal custody in attempt to make him
part of the
family. Don then gave up on Kurt because he was convinced
that his mom brainwashed
him. Eventually, Don couldn?t deal with Kurt.
Kurt was passed between 3
different sets of Aunts and Uncles and his
Grandparents on his dad?s side.
In school Kurt did not do well. He was seen as an outcast, being
around between 4 schools in Aberdeen and Montesano. While still in school,
Kurt was friends with Myer Loftin, an openly gay student. He enjoyed the
conflict he caused. He thinks it was then, that he almost found his identity
true identity. Around Grade.11; the moving around a lot was only a small
part of the problems What led to his eventual drop out of school in May of
graduating year, was his intense hate of the teachers.
He would fantasise
killing them in front of the class.
Wendy seeing all of this decided
that her traumas were worse than Kurts, because she had just dumped an abusive
boyfriend. She was still focused on doing good by her son. So, she simply
passed her son
on to live with her brother Chuck. Kurt by then was distraught
moving from relative to relative. In May of 1984, when Kurt was 17,
was remarried to Pat O?Connor. Wendy once again decided
that she was worse
off than Kurt, because Pat was an alcoholic. She
again she felt incapable
of taking Kurt . After months of emotional phone calls and crying, Wendy
took Kurt back. Kurt rebelled at home when back with his mom. Wendy?s patience
with Kurt wore thin with Kurt because she was mad at Pat for drinking. She
often used her anger at Pat towards the kids One morning while living with
Wendy and Pat, Pat came in smelling like a girl. With Pat being an avid gun
collector Wendy attempted to load one of the guns, but found she couldn?t.
She had Kim gather up all the guns and bullets and dump them in the Wishkah
River. Kurt witnessing all of this from his room, recruited some friends
to dig out as many guns as they could out of the river and then he sold them.
Wendy abandoned Kurt again. She sent him to live with his friend Jesse
Reed, whose parents were born again Christians. The Reeds weren?t too fond
of Kurt. He was considered a bad influence on their son. The final straw
with the Reeds came when they locked Kurt out of their house, and Kurt kicked
in the door. Mr. Reed told Kurt in no uncertain terms that he was a lost
cause. That was the end of life at the Reed house.
After this incident Wendy
decided to try ?tough love?, which
was just becoming recognized. Kurt moved
into an apartment in Aberdeen with Jesse Reed. In 1985 Kurt was evicted
from his apartment. Wendy keeping up with the tough love had nothing to
do with Kurt. With nowhere to sleep Kurt would sleep on a cardboard box
on his friend
Dale Crovers porch, or under the North Aberdeen Bridge.
Wendy, then dropped the ?tough love?, and allowed Kurt to stop by her house
and she?d make him lunch.
In fall of 1986 Kurt hurt his hand while making
french fries, and
severely burnt his hand on the grease. Kurt was told by
that he?d never play the guitar again. In 1987 Kurt developed
a piercing pain in his stomach. The condition plagued Kurt for the rest
of his life. It baffled even the best specialists.
From 1987 on Kurt
was heavy into the music and drug scene. He was plagued by psychological
problems, and stomach pain as well as drug addiction. These problems persisted
on through to 1992 and then through to his death while he and his constantly
changing band were frustrated by the setback of trying to make it big in
music, and then coping with fame. Kurt being naive about drugs, started
taking percodan, not being aware of the addiction factor involved. Eventually
percodan led to heroin. Then, very unexpectedly in 1992 Nirvana finally
made it big. Nirvana skyrocketed to fame at a quick pace. Kurt never fully
recovered from this fame. He didn?t like and couldn?t cope with the fame
and public limelight.
February. 24th, 1992 in Waikiki, Hawaii Kurt was
married to Courtney Love. Like Kurt, Courtney was also from a broken home.
6 Months after their marriage their first and only child was born. A girl,
Francis Bean Cobain. Kurt struggled with parenthood, and with the fact that
the Seattle branch of Child and Family services was trying to take away Francis
with charges of unfit parenting. With the onset of a new child and marriage,
Kurt became severely depressed. The depression lasted up until his death.
In March of 1994 Kurt collapsed in Rome. A near fatal combination of champagne
and tranquillisers. On April.8th 1994 at the young age of 27, Kurt Donald
Cobain was found dead in the greenhouse on top of the house he shared with
Courtney. His death
has never, despite media coverage, been proved as
Kurt?s main outlet for his pain was music. If you analyse his
you can read the pain that he?s trying to express. Music helped Kurt communicate
the pain that he was going through. A less noble outlet
was drugs. Not to
sensationalise or condemn drug use, but in your teens
it?s confusing enough
without the added on troubles of both parents
abandoning you. In some ways
Kurt did try to stop his downward spiral of destruction. When Kurt was nearing
18 his father feared his could loose Kurt forever, he made an ultimatum of
music or living with his dad rent free. So Kurt sold his guitar, and tried
the Navy test. He ended up
getting one of the highest scores Aberdeen had
ever seen. However Kurt never did enlist in the Navy.
Kurt tried many
times to stop his drug abuse. Shortly before he was
found dead Courtney
tried an intervention. Successfully, Kurt enrolled in the Exodus Rehabilitation
Centre. One of the finest and established
places in Seattle. Unfortunately,
Kurt left before his treatment could really
start to help.
of Kurt Cobain is that he was an almost over comer. His life was worth a
lot to many people. If he had not died when he did, he would have been an
over comer. In Kurt’s short life he matured a lot. He stopped taking his
anger out on society in every way he could. He
found love in his wife and
child. He was determined to be there
for Francis the way his parents were
not there for him. The effect of
Kurt?s music was tremendous. He managed
without a lot of a lot of words to touch his fans, in a way no other rock
star had before. He was
different than the average star. Not everything
to him was a greedy
money game to him. He tried as hard as possible when
he was famous,
to lead a modest life. Kurt?s brutally honest approach to
life will never
be forgotten. He was not only a songwriter, but a
My thoughts on Psychological nature are that sometimes your
that you grow up in, does not have to dictate the rest
of your life. Kurt
had bad surroundings and role models but, he
made a lot out of his short
Freud was somewhat right with his theory of your childhood.
had a very bad childhood, and it stayed with him right up until
He was always afraid of abandonment, and desertion. Yet, in the
you can say that he almost broke the cycle of abandonment, by
being a good
father to Francis and not abandoning her in the same
way his parents abandoned
him. Kurt did not fully break the cycle of
abandonment, because now Francis
will only have memories of her
departed father, although at least they will
be mainly good memories.
It?s important to remember, that when you idealise
and put rock stars up
on pedestals as much as Kurt was you also have to give
and privacy, like so many stars want to have. Kurt should be
to all that rock stars are not superhuman beings. People may
say if you don?t like public attention, then quit music. It?s a catch 22,
easy to say but not to do. Even if Kurt did quit music, he would always be
?that guy from Nirvana?. If Kurt did in fact commit suicide, he should not
be a hero or selfish but a lost soul, wondering amongst the dead, who should
not be forgotten.
In closing my theory is that; yes, your childhood can
but only if you let it.
In the words and memory of Kurt Cobain
?PEACE, LOVE AND EMPATHY?
The above line quoted from the ?alleged? suicide
note found by his body.
My main question and confusion about human behaviour
is why was Kurt so deeply affected, and his sister Kim not?
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