To anyone who has been taken advantage of in a relationship and felt they were alone,
In my honors composition class, we were each given a book to read. My book was “The Woman in White,” that I was left to find a real life connection with. I found some personal connections and also real life connections that could relate with this book that I hope could help whomever is reading this also relate. I want this to help show you aren’t alone.
“The Woman in White” is by Wilkie Collins who was in fact a fan of women’s rights. The book itself is about multiple characters’ views during this period of distress they go through. As for the main character, Walter is a man continuously trying to find answers. Laura is a woman nearly fading away in this book. She struggles to stand up for herself. She is manipulated by her spouse and taken advantage of by not just him, but a count. Marian, Laura’s sister, is always looking out for her. Walter and Marian also find themselves searching for answers to these mysterious crimes together. Marian could be described as the more masculine figure in this story and trying to take control of the situations that continue to take place. The book has many people viewed as villains to look out for including the count and Sir Percival. Women in this story are thrown around and not respected at all. The “Woman in White” is Anne Catherick brought upon by her run in with Walter when she escaped the asylum, we later find out she is actually Laura’s half-sister.
I pulled some events and quotations from the book that led me to this issue. First quotation, “I can never claim my release from my engagement," she went on. Laura is taken advantage of so much in this book. You can really connect with her reading this and feel sorry for her. The fact that most of the men in this book are the ones taking advantage of the women and caring so little about the damage they cause connects with my personal experience. Women continue to be taken advantage of today in their relationships and left to pick up themselves by themselves.
An event from the book is Marian and Laura being threatened by two men, leaving them both suffering. They feel weak and unable to do anything to get away. First off women being treated like this is completely and utterly repulsive. No woman should feel weak and have no strength to do stand.
Chapter Ten, Laura is basically being forced into a marriage that her sister and her both know isn’t what she wants when she is madly in love Walter. Todays world some women still deal with this problem. Todays statistics shows 52.25% of arranged marriages still take place.
Chapter thirty- two, Walter speaks of how Laura has changed. She no longer is happy and shows no attention to anyone. Marian speaks of how Laura no longer can laugh at anything and finds no happiness with Walters presence. Depression took over her very much after the asylum and everything she was forced through. Loss of interest in her hobbies, feeling of hopelessness and her persistent sad mood she develops all show signs of her depression.
My personal connection to this issue is a past experience where my aunt became the victim and my uncle was the villain. My aunt was the one who took care of her children everyday of their lives with little help from anyone. Studies show 80% of women are single mothers these days.She got them up every morning to feed them, took them to school, then went herself, after work picked them up, fed them and helped with homework they had and put them in bed for the night. Repeated daily. My uncle on the other hand would try and call DFS on her so he wouldn’t have to pay child support. Sometimes even stole from her and worst of all would make her feel bad about herself for being a teen mom when she was and then took it further by telling her she’s a terrible mother. I made this connection because in the story Laura is victimized by Sir Percival. He used her for his own selfish reasons and on top of it didn’t care about her feelings and what she wanted. She went on to become depressed and slowly began to shut down and fade away. Walter and Marian try everything to help her and make her feel happy again but, everything she had gone through at this point had hurt her too bad for her to even want to do anything and feel anyway.
“The Women’s March (2017)” was a very inspiring event that showed a lot of support to women everywhere. The march wasn’t just for women but, for all human rights.
To all the women out there who are victimized and taken advantage of you have the right to stand up for yourself and not let someone take control. You’re in charge of the outcome, you either let it continue or you do something about it. It starts by taking control of the problem and solving it in any way you must. Don’t let fear take part in this either. Fear can be overcome. Eighty percent of women these days become single mothers and left taken advantage of and broken. Depression in this case becomes a real problem and begins to ruin women.
Laura in the end felt worthless and low about herself. She was ready to vanish. Women shouldn’t let themselves get to that point and should let anyone who is willing to help them, help them! May feel like you don’t want someone to show pity for you and make you feel like there is something wrong but, in the end the best thing for you is to stand up for yourself and never let someone take advantage of you or control you in any way.