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The Comfort of Lies
"The characters crackle with both intelligence and wit." - Kirkus
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Does the fact that Savannah is adopted affect how Caroline thinks about being a mother?

Created: 04/27/13

Replies: 11

Posted Apr. 27, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
admin

Join Date: 10/11/10

Posts: 369

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Does the fact that Savannah is adopted affect how Caroline thinks about being a mother?

Turn to Caroline and Peter’s conversation on p. 262. Does the fact that Savannah is adopted affect how Caroline thinks about being a mother—does it make it seem more like a daily choice she must make rather than a state of being?


Posted May. 20, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
tillieh

Join Date: 04/28/11

Posts: 60

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RE: Does the fact that Savannah is adopted affect how Caroline thinks about being a mother?

No. I think some people aren't ready for motherhood even when they give birth to a child. I was certainly ready to be a mother when I adopted my son and thrived in the role. I also know of some people who gave birth to children and still aren't embracing the role of mother even though their children are now grown with children of their own.


Posted May. 20, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
norahp

Join Date: 04/27/13

Posts: 19

RE: Does the fact that Savannah is adopted affect how Caroline thinks about being a mother?

That's an interesting point--Caroline seems so ambitious and mature in other areas of her life, but it's interesting to think about whether she'd have been ready to jump into motherhood with that same zeal had the circumstances been different. Or would she have met pregnancy, etc., with the same level of ambivalence?


Posted May. 20, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
laurap

Join Date: 06/19/12

Posts: 68

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RE: Does the fact that Savannah is adopted affect how Caroline thinks about being a mother?

I agree with tillieh. I think Caroline agreed to adopt because her husband wanted a child. Caroline and Peter's resolution of their employment situations in the end seems to be one of the better outcomes of the book, even though it is a bit of a storybook ending.


Posted May. 21, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
mariannes

Join Date: 12/17/12

Posts: 170

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RE: Does the fact that Savannah is adopted affect how Caroline thinks about being a mother?

It seems to affect Caroline's reactions. She is afraid to say anything negative about being a parent or about her daughter for fear that people will think she's not a good mother. I don't think all adoptive parents react that way, however.


Posted May. 21, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
Sharlene

Join Date: 04/10/13

Posts: 30

RE: Does the fact that Savannah is adopted affect how Caroline thinks about being a mother?

I don't think the fact that Savannah was adopted had anything to do with Caroline's difficulty to bond with her. I don't believe that motherhood was her first inclination and her career took priority over her husband and child. This wasn't evident when it was just Caroline and Peter as both were focused on their careers but once Savannah became part of the marriage Peter's priorities changed while Caroline's didn't. Since she knew that her career was her priority, it created great guilt feelings about her ability to be the mother Savannah needed.


Posted May. 21, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
norahp

Join Date: 04/27/13

Posts: 19

RE: Does the fact that Savannah is adopted affect how Caroline thinks about being a mother?

Sharlene or others: do you think that's something that happens a lot--a couple's dynamics changing dramatically once there's a child on the scene?


Posted May. 21, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
pate

Join Date: 03/15/13

Posts: 17

RE: Does the fact that Savannah is adopted affect how Caroline thinks about being a mother?

I believe that Caroline was terribly insecure and indifferent about being a mother, whether it was naturally through pregnancy, or adoption. I think, though, that going ahead with the adoption knowing it wasn't what she really wanted, and the fact that she was career driven, heightened her guilt about not being a good mother. While at times it was difficult for me to feel sympathy for Caroline, especially when she didn't share those feelings with her husband, I do know she was aware of her feelings of ambivalence about motherhood and her seeming inability to be the kind of ideal, nurturing mother she felt should come more naturally.That recognition of her feelings,and her efforts to finally look for a way towards resolving those feelings, helped me to see her in a more positive light.


Posted May. 21, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
Sharlene

Join Date: 04/10/13

Posts: 30

RE: Does the fact that Savannah is adopted affect how Caroline thinks about being a mother?

Oh, my gosh, yes. With the closest of couples, no matter how much they want and anticipate a child, things change. Sometimes for the better but priorities, demands on your time, lots of big changes.


Posted May. 23, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
cherylb

Join Date: 12/04/12

Posts: 5

RE: Does the fact that Savannah is adopted affect how Caroline thinks about being a mother?

No, I don't think the fact that Savannah is adopted affects Caroline's feelings about being a mother. I have a biological daughter, and it took me months to adjust to being a mom, and I have realized none of what I thought I knew about motherhood beforehand could prepare me for the actuality of it. My daughter is a lot like Savannah in being demanding, serious, and stubborn. Some days I find myself feeling like an awful mom (and she is 5 years old already!). I love her to pieces and would gladly die to protect her, but I cannot keep her forefront 24/7 as I don't have endless patience! I'm a stay-at-home mom too (gave up career for motherhood). I am struggling a bit with a loss of identity since my daughter is starting kindergarten in the fall. I know I'm still a stay-at-home mom, but my daughter won't be there to take care of during the day. So many years out of my workforce (microbiology) and perhaps Mommy-brain have left me feeling I don't fit in there any more as I haven't kept up with current developments in my field.


Posted Jun. 04, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
sarahh

Join Date: 03/05/12

Posts: 13

RE: Does the fact that Savannah is adopted affect how Caroline thinks about being a mother?

I think her struggles with motherhood have more to do with feeling pressured into it by her husband (and thus are reflective of feelings for him) than of her actual feelings for her daughter. And also just of the transition of who she was and what that role looks like as a mother vs a wife, successful woman, etc.


Posted Jun. 06, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
barbarab

Join Date: 04/15/11

Posts: 35

RE: Does the fact that Savannah is adopted affect how Caroline thinks about being a mother?

No, I think Caroline really didn't want to be a mother, but she went along with it because that's what Peter wanted. It could have been worse if she had given birth, especially with postpartum depression. She tried,but it just wasn't there. Some women just don't want to be mothers & that's ok. I think Savannah knew as well. She was always looking for her mother's attention & approval. She was a sad little girl.


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