Was there any way Natalie could justify her feelings for a married man?

Use this forum to discuss the April 2018 Book of the Month, "Ironbark Hill" by Jennie Linnane
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Re: Was there any way Natalie could justify her feelings for a married man?

Post by ValBookReviews »

Hmm... tricky question. Let me see... Hmm... At age sixteen years old I fell in love with a much older man, a few years shy of thirty years old and in my now adult life, looking back, due to my father issues, I sincerely believe that I was looking for love in the wrong places. So, while I don't believe that Natalie stole Mrs. Grover's husband, I do believe she was aware of her actions and can slightly justify her feelings for a married man.
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Post by SereneCharles »

I don't think her feelings are justifiable. He's married, for God's sake.
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Post by alisonedgee »

affairs happen all the time, with all different types of people - who even says she needs to justify the feelings at all?
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Post by bootsie0126+ »

Tricky question indeed. Humans are sexual beings and as such, we can find ourselves being attracted to someone based on our taste, feelings and most importantly our state of mind at the time. A person can become attracted to a married person, which is truly ok. If that person is pleasing to the eye and have qualities that you admire, your mind and body reacts, this is normal. It is even okay to acknowledge to yourself that the attraction or crush is there, however how you control your attraction is the key. We are built to respond to stimulants that arouse feelings and desires. We like what we like and it is difficult to turn that emotion off.

It is not unreasonable for someone to have feelings of desire, lust, or even love for a married person. However, here is where the problem comes in. No matter how a person may feel about someone who is married (not to them), there is a line that should never be crossed. I can rationalize my feelings of love for this person based on what I like and the characteristic of that person that creates the idea of love. What can never be justified is having an affair with a married person. For starters, it is morally wrong. A person's age has nothing to do with morals and values that are inside of us.

If you took a poll and asked people if they would ever have an affair with a married person, most would answer no way. But affairs happen all the time. When an attraction or crush starts to consume a person thoughts, and you begin to fantasize about being swept off your feet and living happily ever after, it is difficult for people to understand that fantasy is not reality.
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Post by prospero360 »

Sometimes you can't control your feelings but you can always control your actions. That being said one can have feelings for a married man but one MUST let these feelings go and not act on them. There's no justification for acting on such feelings.
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Post by 00LynnMarie »

You can't help who you love. That being said, what Natalie could have controlled was her actions. The person I held most responsible was Bruce Glover. Natalie was just a girl. He was an adult and should have had better control of himself. People came down hard on Alex because he was physically abusive, but wasn't Bruce Glover just as guilty when you consider that Natalie was still just a child?
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Post by The BookWorm Nagham »

Natalie had a rough childhood, her upbringing can't be considered healthy or normal, I'm not trying to defend her, what she did was wrong, but at 16 feeling are amplified, especially love, something she has never felt before. It's true that you can't help who you're attracted to, but they were both mature enough to recognize that their actions were wrong. I actually blame the husband, he took advantage of her while she was in a vulnerable place, he, being older therefore wiser, should have stopped the relationship.
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Post by Brittany J »

I don't think it is unethical for her to have feelings for a married man, and I don't think anyone should have to justify their personal and intimate feelings. Actions are what we do have control over, and it is wrong to act on those feelings in this situation with a married man.
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Post by dgallois »

Brittany J wrote: 30 May 2018, 12:09 I don't think it is unethical for her to have feelings for a married man, and I don't think anyone should have to justify their personal and intimate feelings. Actions are what we do have control over, and it is wrong to act on those feelings in this situation with a married man.
I completely agree with you. You can't always control your feelings but you can control your actions.
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Post by susanwaweru123+4 2 »

There was no way Natalie could justify her feelings because even if love builds strong desire in someone to a point it can be uncontrollable, we have what it takes to fight what we see is not appropriate like in the case of Natalie breaking a home. She could have found a way to ignore her feelings and look for a younger man.
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Post by Helpme71 »

Feeling love or an attraction to a married man can be justified to an extent. For example, it is popular to fawn over actors and actresses we find attractive, even if they are married. There have been points in my life where I have been "in love" with a certain actor, and that's not a bad thing. What makes Natalie's feelings "wrong" is that she chooses to give in to her urges and have a sexual relationship with a married man. Feelings are not necessarily wrong, as long as they are not acted upon.
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Post by SamSim »

lesler wrote: 04 Apr 2018, 11:31 Love is unexplainable, but controlling one's actions must be done. She couldn't help her feelings, but she can control her actions on it.
I agree. Even if someone can't "help" falling in love with someone else, lack of self-control is not excusable.
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Post by Elle Howard »

I think what Natalie did was unethical. But we have no control over who we fall in love with. She was young and probably had no clue as to how she had shattered Mrs Glover’s life.
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Post by Cardinalsparrow »

Her actions were wrong but then it's possible she couldn't control them. Love is a strong force you know, coupled with her tough childhood. Let's just not see it in black and white.
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Post by Kmykel »

Cardinalsparrow wrote: 21 Jun 2018, 04:53 Her actions were wrong but then it's possible she couldn't control them. Love is a strong force you know, coupled with her tough childhood. Let's just not see it in black and white.
I'm in complete agreement with you. It's possible that she was seeking comfort and solstice where she hadn't had it previously, and once she got a taste of it, she couldn't stop herself. It also shouldn't be understated that she's a teenager, and teenagers aren't known for making rational and selfless decisions.
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