I recently finished a book by Joyce Carol Oates called The Gravedigger’s Daughter. It took me about 2/3 way through the book before I really loved it. Then I was sorry to see it end. But…
There was a passage in it, page 429, which stopped me in my tracks at the time, and has been bothering my mind for about a week now. Here it is.
“A woman opens her body to a man, a man will possess it as his own.
Once a man loves you in that way, he will come to hate you. In time.
Never will a man forgive you for his weakness in loving you.”
I know it’s just a novel; that an author will write what he/she thinks makes a good story. But it has been bugging me. Not that I think the passage is a true one. Not quite. It’s not completely it. Thoughts have been worming their way through the nooks and crannies of my grey matter and here’s what I think might be more correct.
When two people are in love, living their lives together, open to each other, sharing who they are, inevitably a time will come when complete trust becomes a question. It could be from something said in anger, or feeling inadequate, jealousy. No matter. It’s not that he is weak in loving you, although aren’t we all to a degree when we love, as well as the most powerful? It’s that you know the others’ weaknesses. And in time, they know your strength and feel weaker because of it. I don’t know. Or maybe I’m just full of crap and have thought waaay too much about it. Yeah, I’m like that. And why would it bother me so?
What do you think about it? Maybe it has nothing to do with gender, and certainly is not true of all relationships, but on some level it was of one of mine in the past.