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Its not just Anna and Elsa: Most Disney princesses dont have parents
Frozen (2013) - photo by Shelby Slade
While Disney movies may be mildly depressing at times, they are built on happily ever afters.

Yet, most of the movies begin on a very sad note that is often glossed over: the death of one or both of the characters parents.

Of the 13 Disney princesses, nine have seen one or both of their parents die, and only four have both in their lives.

Don Hahn, the executive producer of many popular Disney movies, said he thinks part of the reason many of these films star characters without mothers is because of the tragic death of Walt Disneys own mom, Jessica Radloff reported for Glamour.

Disney purchased a home for his parents in the early 1940s, but the furnace leaked and his mother later died from the fumes, he explained.

Some critics argue that the family history and popularity of each Disney character without a mom or dad combine to normalize growing up without both parents.

This can be both a good and bad thing. Some believe stories of unconventional families give children whose parents have died or divorced characters to relate to. Others insist media is justifying divorce and giving the impression that it is less harmful than it really is.

Betzy Bozdech warns in an article for Common Sense Media that watching these movies can cause children sadness or introduce uncomfortable topics parents may need to discuss with them.

Scenes that deal with loss, separation, and kids and parents in peril are particularly unsettling, so be prepared to help them deal with the tough issues they see. It's best to answer kids' inevitable questions with direct, simple, and honest information, and reassure them where you can.
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