Kate Chopin's Short Stories

I Stand Here Ironing by Tillie Olsen

Why is Emily separated from her family?

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She is seperated a few times. When Emily was eight months old, the narrator was forced to leave her in the care of a neighbor. Emily’s father had left unexpectedly, unable to bear the family’s poverty.Eventually, the narrator sent Emily to live with her father’s family. Emily returned to her mother’s care when she was two, but the narrator worked long hours and placed Emily in day care.The mother recalls sending Emily away to another’s care a second time and Emily’s subsequent return, this time adjusting to a new stepfather. Suffering from tuberculosis at another point in her life, Emily was sent to a convalescent home, where she could be better cared for. During twice-monthly visits, the narrator had to shout to Emily, who stood on a balcony some distance away, because all the parents were forbidden from getting too close to their children.