A Secret Sorrow: Favorite Story

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Hayley Poteat Victoria Hamilton GS240 Introduction to Literature July 24, 2011

My favorite story is A Secret Sorrow because it really struck a chord with my sense of being a mother, a woman and someone that can be loved for being those things. Karen van der Zee displays Faye’s emotions in such a raw manner. Faye is a woman, and the God given right of any woman from birth is to bear children, carrying on not only her legacy but that of her husband’s. The fact that Faye has had that ability taken away from her so cruelly is so sad and wrenching. It’s as though all her power as a woman has been stripped from her, her femininity and her use to society in her mind. She has already decided that no one will ever want to marry her, which is clear when they are having the discussion and she says, “I can’t be what you want me to be. We can’t have the kind of life you want.” On the flip side I absolutely love Kai and his response to this news that Faye is forced to break to him. I am warmed that even though he can tell it causes her so much pain to have to tell him whatever it is that has gotten her so upset, he still wants to hear it. Then when he hears what the news is finally he doesn’t shun her like she thinks he will. He doesn’t make her feel worse by belittling her or by affirming her thoughts and telling her he will never see her again. When he says to her “You know I always wanted children, but what in God’s name makes you think you’re the only one who has the right to feel bad about it? I have the right too, you hear!” he is just as outraged as she is that she has been injured in this way. He is taking on her pain and her anguish without blaming her. I have a man in my life who would have the same reaction and opinion that Kai has of Faye’s admission. I find this story to be so romantic and all that you want in a relationship where two people love each other and support each other no matter what consequences arise in their life.

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