In the novel, Ethan Frome by Edith Wharton, Ethane’s life, althoughdifficult, was full of discontent because of his choices.
Ethan’s poor choices havemade him a miserable man with little to look forward to and only agony to look backon. Three topics that display this discontent for life and the poor choices that Ethanmade are that Ethan’s experiences personal misfortune that hurt his chance forhappiness, Ethan made choices too quickly and gave them little or no thought, andZeena’s hypocondriact nature was a huge weight on the soul of Ethan Frome. Ethan experiences personal misfortunes that hurt his chances for happiness. Ethan Frome’s troubles began he made poor choices in his life. When Ethan wasattending his college classes his father had become deathly ill and soon after theillness had struck, he died. As a result of his fathers death, Ethan’s mother was leftall alone and so was his father’s saw mill.
Ethan had no choice but to leave collegeand stop his classes so that he could go home and take care of his poor mother. Ethanwent home like any respectable young man would do those days, As Marline Springer writes ?Ethan Frome gives up scholarly ambitions to help animprovised motherly figures. ? This move started a domino affect of bad choices and bad karma falling towardshim. Ethan made decisions too quickly and gave them little or no thought Some of the decisions that Ethan made were not well planned and were blinded byquick thinking and natural human instinct. When Ethan got back from college, tohis distress, his mother was stricken with a deadly disease. Now poor Ethan haddouble the work on his hands, taking care of the saw mill and his mother.
So hiscousin, Zeena, came to take care of his ill mother. Ethan saw how well Zeena hadtaken care of his mother, which gave him the idea that because she took care of hismother so well that maybe she would care for him as well as she cared for hismother. Ethan also thought that being alone during the hard cold winter wasunbearable, which made him turn towards the decision of asking Zeena to marryhim. After his mother had died he had also felt he owed Zeena for all her hard work,so he did the only thing he could afford and married her; this would turn out to beone of the worst decisions Ethan would ever make. Zeena’s hypochondriac nature was a huge weight on the soul of EthanFrome. Zeena became ?ill? from nursing Ethan’s mother, so Ethan thought it agood idea to bring Mattie Silver to his household to help nurse Zeena back to health.
As the narrator states ?when she entered the household as Zeena’s cousin her aid it wasthought best. ? Ethan Frome then foolishly fell in love with Mattie, which complicated matterseven further. Ethan would then have to make many choices about advancing his andMattie’s relationship or staying faithful to Zeena.Ethan was about to commit suicide with Mattie so that Zeena would not be inthe way, but instead supposedly made the decision to stay with Zeena by veeringaway from the tree at the last second leaving Mattie crippled and him with a warpedleft side.In this novel there were many choices that were made by Ethan Frome, mostof which were poor and not well thought out in consequence these decisions broughthim anguish and pain, and one short leg.Book Reports