Compare and Contrast A Sorrowful Women and A Secret Sorrow
The comparison in both stories, “A Secret Sorrow” by Karen van der Zee and “A Sorrowful Women,” by Gail Godwin, are two different tales about women who struggle immensely to achieve happiness for their family and personal sake. Faye and the unidentified woman both depict the unhappiness in their lives. The stories have “sorrow” in both titles to show that both stories will contain a theme of disparity. Van der Zee and Gail Godwin have the same theme for their stories but they are expressed very differently in the respective plots.
The contrast in both stories “A Sorrowful Women” and “The Secret Sorrow” is that in “A sorrowful women”, the woman appears to be unidentified. She experiences depression towards her family, which even sickens her to look or speak to her child and husband. In contrast to “A secret sorrow”, Faye, the main character of the story, seems to be unhappy because she cannot conceive any children and wants a loving family. In both stories, the ironic coincidence of one woman wanting a happy family and the other not wanting a family at all. Faye in “A Secret Sorrow” wants to have a complete family. Faye experiences desolation upon receiving news that she can’t bear children and believes that Kai, her boyfriend at the time, will not love her anymore. Faye doesn’t understand why Kai continues to stay with her despite her inability to conceive. Instead of drawing back to another woman, Kai stands with Faye through thick and thin.
In comparison to both stories, the two women have understanding spouses who sympathize with their wives and want their marriages to work. The other fundamental similarity is the presence of Sorrow, that haunt both women. Faye and the woman experience dilemmas for having or abandoning their family. The sorrow each woman experiences, causes great strain on their spouses and marriage. The thought of divorce or abandoning the family is mentioned in both stories.
In “A Sorrowful Woman”, the women felt disgusted and belittled by the husband and child and had thoughts of leaving them. She stays in her room always and sneak out only when they will not be at home. The woman’s depression eventually took over her life, thus her family. In “A Secret Sorrow”, the woman felt that it was unfair to Kai since they could not have their own children. Faye recommended Kai to look for a better suited woman who could conceive his child. According to wedding vows, couples should stand strong together no matter the circumstance. The two marriages were tested by thin patience and thick will, but only one marriage held true to their vows.
In conclusion, both stories focus on uneasy dilemmas that a woman might go through during marriage. Love appears to be a vital aspect in the stories, since love is what helped Faye and Kai overcame their afflicted complication by believing in each other. The unfortunate events in both stories deviate from each other in several ways. The woman in “A Sorrowful Woman” escaped her prison by taking her own life, with no consideration for what she would leave behind or hurt. Faye and Kai lived happily ever after since they managed to cope with their problems. Love, family and dedication play a vital role in the stories, and as shown in “A Secret Sorrow,” no obstacle is too big or too small, communication is a necessity, but essential, and suicide is never an option.

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