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Five Days
"A brilliant meditation on regret, fidelity, family, and second chances that...
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Is adultery really a betrayal of trust - or, in the case of Laura, a necessary way for her to begin to confront the empty sadness of her marriage?

Created: 05/03/13

Replies: 18

Posted May. 03, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
admin

Join Date: 10/11/10

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Is adultery really a betrayal of trust - or, in the case of Laura, a necessary way for her to begin to confront the empty sadness of her marriage?

Is adultery really a betrayal of trust - or, in the case of Laura, a necessary way for her to begin to confront the empty sadness of her marriage?


Posted May. 06, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
rebajane

Join Date: 04/21/11

Posts: 121

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RE: Is adultery really a betrayal of trust - or, in the case of Laura, a necessary way for her to begin to confront the empty sadness of her marriage?

It certainly can be either. Some affairs happen in so called "good" marriages where two people are relatively happy and one or both partners are looking for excitement or something different. That can result in a betrayal. But some affairs happen because the marriage has failed and one or both partners are looking for something to kick start a way out


Posted May. 06, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
barbluvstennis

Join Date: 07/16/11

Posts: 14

RE: Is adultery really a betrayal of trust - or, in the case of Laura, a necessary way for her to begin to confront the empty sadness of her marriage?

I am not moralizing here, but I do think adultery is always a betrayal. However, that does not necessarily imply that the relationship is ruined, or that forgiveness cannot be sought and recieved...It would certainly be tough, but it can be done.


Posted May. 06, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
kiml

Join Date: 05/19/11

Posts: 12

RE: Is adultery really a betrayal of trust - or, in the case of Laura, a necessary way for her to begin to confront the empty sadness of her marriage?

Adultery in my opinion is always a betrayal of trust. It breaks the bond between two individuals who are suppose to be committed to one another. It is possible to forgive and rebuild, but the blemish can never be removed or forgotten. In the case of Laura without her adultery she would never have confronted what was going on in her marriage. If her spouse Dan was honest he would admit that it was for the best.


Posted May. 06, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
shirleyl

Join Date: 06/01/11

Posts: 13

RE: Is adultery really a betrayal of trust - or, in the case of Laura, a necessary way for her to begin to confront the empty sadness of her marriage?

Why can't it be both?


Posted May. 06, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
barbluvstennis

Join Date: 07/16/11

Posts: 14

RE: Is adultery really a betrayal of trust - or, in the case of Laura, a necessary way for her to begin to confront the empty sadness of her marriage?

It can be both and for her it seemed to be just that ....


Posted May. 07, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
mystinamarie

Join Date: 12/19/12

Posts: 22

RE: Is adultery really a betrayal of trust - or, in the case of Laura, a necessary way for her to begin to confront the empty sadness of her marriage?

I think adultery is always a betrayal of trust. In this case, it was that, but also a tool for Laura to see with eyes wide open that her marriage wasn't working.
Even before her and Richard had slept together, she had that bond with him and realized it was something she hadn't had with her husband in awhile.
I think the texts throughout the story helped illustrate that tug of moral dilemma she was facing. Her husband tried to do something nice, like clean the garage. But he continued to be very curt and unloving towards her when she replied back. This seemed to negate him trying, because you saw it was just the same bad attitude behind the attempts.
When she had spent the night in the hotel and woke to the messages of him worried and asking where she was and he hoped she was ok, I think it was a poignant way of showing the betrayal. While she was doing her thing and betraying him, he did still care to be concerned and reach out.

Despite him being a pretty gruff person towards her, he still is a man she committed herself to in marriage. It was obvious he was going through a lot with the emotions of losing his job. I think the book tried to "demonize" Dan in an unfair light to make us readers be ok with the affair and feel it was justified.

Don't forget- we saw a lot of examples of Laura completely undermining her husband's perfectly valid parenting choices. She also was a complete brat to Richard when she first met him, as well. Neither were angels.


Posted May. 07, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
barbluvstennis

Join Date: 07/16/11

Posts: 14

RE: Is adultery really a betrayal of trust - or, in the case of Laura, a necessary way for her to begin to confront the empty sadness of her marriage?

I agree with mystinamarie and as I pointed out earlier, it is always a betrayal ...I also believe in committment and long term goals rather than short lived excitement. I agree that she undermined him with his parenting, but he was lacking in empathy and had a rather short fuse...Maybe she felt she had to equalize his choices with her rather permissive attitudes..


Posted May. 08, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
kiml

Join Date: 05/19/11

Posts: 12

RE: Is adultery really a betrayal of trust - or, in the case of Laura, a necessary way for her to begin to confront the empty sadness of her marriage?

I agree with mystinamarie that the book demonized Dan for the purposes of the storyline. I could see a scenario like this in real life. Dan is gruff and very unloving to his wife, so maybe her leaving for the weekend made him reflect on his behavior. Possibly it frightened him that Laura left, as this made him feel isolated and alone. She had a life outside of their home and he had no one except for her, that may have caused him to examine what life would be without her. Laura gave me the feeling that she had a co-dependent personality. This was reflected in her attitude towards her children. She was always trying to make everything perfect for fear she would lose them if she didn't make their lives perfect.


Posted May. 08, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
Hulananni

Join Date: 06/13/11

Posts: 16

RE: Is adultery really a betrayal of trust - or, in the case of Laura, a necessary way for her to begin to confront the empty sadness of her marriage?

Adultery for whatever reason is a betrayal of trust and rarely lifts the adulterer(s) to ecstasy. More often guilt is the overriding emotion.


Posted May. 09, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
pennyp

Join Date: 03/22/12

Posts: 83

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RE: Is adultery really a betrayal of trust - or, in the case of Laura, a necessary way for her to begin to confront the empty sadness of her marriage?

I do think adultery is a betrayal of trust and while it may have helped Laura realize the emptiness of her marriage, if she had been honest with herself, she would have realized it without the affair. Adultery is always a demoralizing thing for the partner.


Posted May. 09, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
terriej

Join Date: 07/28/11

Posts: 69

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RE: Is adultery really a betrayal of trust - or, in the case of Laura, a necessary way for her to begin to confront the empty sadness of her marriage?

I think adultery is always a betrayal of trust.


Posted May. 09, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
kathleenb

Join Date: 09/14/12

Posts: 13

RE: Is adultery really a betrayal of trust - or, in the case of Laura, a necessary way for her to begin to confront the empty sadness of her marriage?

Adultery is always a betrayal of trust. My husband and I both feel if you feel so strongly that you want/need to fool around than end the marriage first. Laura could have realized that weekend (which she had already almost come to that conclusion) that her marriage was over for her. She could have waited till she was seperated/divorced before seeing someone else in a romantic way. I think that she would have had a much easier time if she had gone that route instead.


Posted May. 12, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
vickys

Join Date: 04/21/11

Posts: 10

RE: Is adultery really a betrayal of trust - or, in the case of Laura, a necessary way for her to begin to confront the empty sadness of her marriage?

Yes it is a betrayal of trust. If someone is so unhappy with the marriage that she/he contemplates an affair it is time to confront the issue with the spouse and work to fix it or end it and then move on.


Posted May. 13, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
shelbyl

Join Date: 05/19/11

Posts: 22

RE: Is adultery really a betrayal of trust - or, in the case of Laura, a necessary way for her to begin to confront the empty sadness of her marriage?

I agree with vickys but acknowledge that we are human after all and don't always have the strength or will to do the moral thing. Our experiences become life lessons and hopefully those we view as morally wrong should not be repeated.


Posted May. 13, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
lisag

Join Date: 01/12/12

Posts: 298

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RE: Is adultery really a betrayal of trust - or, in the case of Laura, a necessary way for her to begin to confront the empty sadness of her marriage?

I'm not sure infidelity is the only betrayal of trust in marriage but it is one of them. It strikes at the heart of "forsaking all others." That being said, falling out of love and failing to honor would be two others, which tend to come - as was the case with Laura - before infidelity. Not in all cases, but many. I know couples who love each other sometimes have affairs but I have a lot more trouble with the why of it than in cases like Laura's, which seem so much more "clear cut," if this situation ever can be called that.


Posted May. 13, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
Navy Mom

Join Date: 04/12/12

Posts: 93

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RE: Is adultery really a betrayal of trust - or, in the case of Laura, a necessary way for her to begin to confront the empty sadness of her marriage?

I would agree with the comments here that adultery is a betrayal of trust. The problem is, though, marriage isn't a contractual thing. It is an emotional bond. When either side feels betrayal, in this case Laura felt betrayed by Dan's isolation from her, the other person may feel justified in looking elsewhere for getting their needs met. They already feel that the 'contract" has been broken so they aren't breaking it.
Laura certainly felt that she deserved Love.


Posted May. 16, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
lisag

Join Date: 01/12/12

Posts: 298

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RE: Is adultery really a betrayal of trust - or, in the case of Laura, a necessary way for her to begin to confront the empty sadness of her marriage?

Navy Mom, I like what you said. It's a different perspective I had been trying to express but hadn't gotten around to it. You've hit the nail right on the head. If there's no love in a marriage, does that render it dead? Can you "sin" against what's dead?


Posted May. 18, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
CoventryReader

Join Date: 08/04/11

Posts: 22

RE: Is adultery really a betrayal of trust - or, in the case of Laura, a necessary way for her to begin to confront the empty sadness of her marriage?

I believe adultery is always wrong. But in the case of Laura, her marriage was already dead and she didn't realize what she was getting into when she first met Richard. There was one moment that she could have asserted herself and backed out of what was happening and that was when they were getting a room in a hotel. This is the time that she could have realized the enormity of what she was about to do.


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