watching her parents' relationship change in the wake of her death she begins to understand how they react to the world and to each other.
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Susie's murder came at a time when she was just beginning to look past the fact that her mother and father were more than her parents; they were real people as well. After her death, she saw how their relationship changed in reaction to their grief. She saw them with sadness and acquired far more patience and understanding of who these people really were. Susie saw their human side, she witnessed their ways of grieving, and she saw the individual mistakes they made. She learned not to judge but rather accept.
The Lovely Bones