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Mr. Freeman is first and foremost the character that most obviously reaches out to Melinda and emphasizes the importance of recognizing and expressing emotions, not stifling them. She rejects his help at first, but eventually decides to confess to him. This is a sign of her growth as a person. Secondly, however, a confession to Mr. Freeman is significant because it falls in line with the traditional young adult novel form. Ultimately, in order to heal, Melinda must reach out to an older, wiser adult.