The Husband’s Secret, by Liane Moriarty

Photo credit: reditalgroup.com

Is it possible to ever really know someone? There is a distinct difference from knowing someone and knowing about someone. Our culture is celebrity obsessed and just because we follow let’s say, Taylor Swift on Facebook or Twitter doesn’t mean we have the right to say we “know” her.  Even though her song lyrics are so powerful and meaningful she is not baring ALL. She has secrets! What about our soul mates? Can we say we truly know our partners for life? Can you really know your significant other? He or she had a life before they met you. Are you 100% sure you know everything? The Husband’s Secret really makes you think about this. My mom used to tell me you never really know someone until you’ve spent four seasons with him or her. I guess she was afraid I’d say the “L – word” before I was with someone for a solid year. Funny, now that my daughter is in the dating game I would want her to get to know a guy for a good 8 to 12 seasons before settling down. What’s the rush!!

But we all carry some secret…some people have more than others and are embarrassed to share certain things from their past. Celebrities have their demons too. Remember when Robin Williams died. I was in utter shock that he committed suicide. How could such a beloved funny man be depressed? I felt like I knew him, after all I had been a Mork fan from the very beginning. I have a good friend who recently confided in me that she had been addicted to  drugs for years. She’s clean now and I am so proud of her. I recently shared with her that my own dad had suffered a terrible depression after he retired. We never lied to each other we just chose to not share with each other…. there’s a difference. 

Celia in The Husband’s Secret had an ideal marriage until one day she opened up the letter that rocked her picture perfect world. But what is perfection and did she really know her husband, JP?  To really know someone you have to take the time and want to make the effort to learn about their interests, their desires, their fears, and their ambitions. After the secret was exposed she started questioning certain odd behaviors in the past. Why did it take so long for her to wonder? Maybe she was complacent. My take on relationships today is that everything moves way too fast (I am not a prude, but take it slow!). Communication between partners is key to a successful relationship. People are not talking to each other anymore and if they are talking I don’t think a lot of people LISTEN. Complacency exists in a lot of relationships and that’s when the not listening and not seeing the little things start happening. You can’t have a meaningful conversation using text message and inevitably the message comes across wrong and “you got a lot of ‘xplainin’ to do!” I must digress…please don’t use text message to break up with someone – it is so un-classy!

“Falling in love was easy…anyone could fall. It was holding on that was tricky”
― Liane Moriarty, The Husband’s Secret

Another question to think about in this book is would you open a letter that says, “to be opened after I die” if the writer of the letter was still alive? Yes! I hate surprises and I haven’t the ability to wait for things! If I was in Celia’s shoes I would have opened the letter without hesitation…immediately! We are in a need to know ASAP world and social media has made it just so easy to be in the know at all times. I don’t think it was a betrayal on her part to open it up. After all, we not supposed to keep secrets from those we love and know! She obviously never really new him…never took the time to delve into his soul. Maybe she was too wrapped up in her business, her community work and the kids. In retrospect maybe it’s better to have less on our plates and spend more time with the people in our lives. 

Another parental tip I received growing up, this time from my old man, the lawyer….”never put anything in writing”. JP wrote that letter/confession years earlier only to lose it and then forget about it. Well, once you write something you can never take it back. It’s so much harder to explain something to a loved one via the written word and if you truly love someone why aren’t you talking? I love to look into the eyes of someone. I know when someone is listening and when he or she is not… that old, “whatchasay”? 

I hope some of you out in HAVE FUN WITH JANE land have read this book and want to share your thoughts. If you haven’t read this novel, it’s a must read! What are you all reading…. any good recommendations to share? Feel free to send me an email: contact@havefunwithjane.com

Jane xo