Holden’s physical appearance shows signs of clinical depression. Sleep disturbances are common in people suffering from depression. After Holden Caulfield was dismissed from Pencey Prep he was barely sleeping because he was too overwhelmed. It took him quite a few nights before the lack of sleep got to him. Holden’s changes in eating habits are another sign of this serious illness. Although we do not know if he was a lighter eater before Allie died, Holden seems to eat very little now. Towards the end of the novel, it came to the point where he was too sick to eat and the waiter took back the doughnuts he ordered. In the last few chapters of the novel, Holden was experiencing headaches, stomachaches, and diarrhea. These are other physical signs of depression. These symptoms, if related to depression, do not respond to treatment and are not explained by other physical conditions. Holden seemed to get stomachaches and diarrhea out of the blue, while the headache could possibly be because of lack of sleep.
Holden’s inability to cope with his younger brother’s loss is another sign of clinical depression. Holden was unable to move past his brother’s sudden death and feels that it is unjust that Allie had to die with so many phonies in the world. Because of this he has become detached from society and criticizes all the phonies in the world. Holden doesn’t fit in with his classmates for this reason. He seems unwilling to open up. He seldom tells the truth “I am the most terrific liar you ever saw in your life.” (pg. 16) Other than his siblings, he doesn’t have very many friends. He frequently talks to his deceased brother whenever he was upset, an example would be at the hotel when he was confronted by Maurice. He talked to Allie saying, “Okay. Go home and get your bike and meet me in front of Bobby’s house. Hurry up.” (pg. 99) He always felt guilty about the time he didn’t take his brother to Lake Sedebego. Because of his brother’s loss he seems to become sympatric to the innocent, usually children. It makes him upset when they are exposed to indecent things, such as the curse word written in the