Ethan In the novel, Ethan Frome by Edith Wharton, Ethanes life, although difficult, was full of discontent because of his choices. Ethans poor choices have made him a miserable man with little to look forward to and only agony to look back on. Three topics that display this discontent for life and the poor choices that Ethan made are that Ethans experiences personal misfortune that hurt his chance for happiness, Ethan made choices too quickly and gave them little or no thought, and Zeenas hypocondriact nature was a huge weight on the soul of Ethan Frome. Ethan experiences personal misfortunes that hurt his chances for happiness. Ethan Fromes troubles began he made poor choices in his life. When Ethan was attending his college classes his father had become deathly ill and soon after the illness had struck, he died.
As a result of his fathers death, Ethans mother was left all alone and so was his fathers saw mill. Ethan had no choice but to leave college and stop his classes so that he could go home and take care of his poor mother. Ethan went home like any respectable young man would do those days, As Marline Springer writes Ethan Frome gives up scholarly ambitions to help an improvised motherly figures. This move started a domino affect of bad choices and bad karma falling towards him. 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 by quick thinking and natural human instinct.
When Ethan got back from college, to his distress, his mother was stricken with a deadly disease. Now poor Ethan had double the work on his hands, taking care of the saw mill and his mother. So his cousin, Zeena, came to take care of his ill mother. Ethan saw how well Zeena had taken care of his mother, which gave him the idea that because she took care of his mother so well that maybe she would care for him as well as she cared for his mother. Ethan also thought that being alone during the hard cold winter was unbearable, which made him turn towards the decision of asking Zeena to marry him.
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 be one of the worst decisions Ethan would ever make. Zeenas hypochondriac nature was a huge weight on the soul of Ethan Frome. Zeena became ill from nursing Ethans mother, so Ethan thought it a good 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 Zeenas cousin her aid it was thought best. Ethan Frome then foolishly fell in love with Mattie, which complicated matters even further. Ethan would then have to make many choices about advancing his and Matties relationship or staying faithful to Zeena. Ethan was about to commit suicide with Mattie so that Zeena would not be in the way, but instead supposedly made the decision to stay with Zeena by veering away from the tree at the last second leaving Mattie crippled and him with a warped left side.
In this novel there were many choices that were made by Ethan Frome, most of which were poor and not well thought out in consequence these decisions brought him anguish and pain, and one short leg. Book Reports.