The Silent Patient
Reading is supposed to be fun. In most instances, reading can help shape our thinking negatively or positively. The Silent Patient, written by Alex Michaelides, took me on a journey of questioning the lack of humanity in the hearts of some people.
The reader encounters Alicia Berenson, who has brutally murdered her beloved husband. Next, the author goes on a mission to show why Alicia murdered her spouse, but first we must find out why Alicia suddenly stopped talking.
I believe Alicia was not in her right mind when she murdered her husband. How on earth can a woman living a perfect life commit such a hideous murder against the love of her life? I felt compassion for Alicia. She needed help.
Theo Faber, the criminal psychotherapist, goes on a mission to get Alicia to talk again. He has high hopes that if he can get Alicia to resume talking he can figure out why she killed her husband. I could not put the book down because I wanted to find out why Alicia killed her husband.
The author does a great job weaving the story, but only to disappoint me in the end. The thing that infuriated me the most was that the entire book is about one simple question. Why is Alicia silent? Why doesn’t she talk?
However, I learned some valuable lessons reading The Silent Patient.
First, it is always best to be honest. If someone wronged you, go to that person and talk things out until you resolve the problem. Do not allow hatred to fester like cancer in your heart. Holding on to resentment might trigger dangerous aggression towards others.
Second, I learned to be careful whom you trust. Not everyone has your best interest at heart. The psychotherapist Theo Faber comes across as a genuine person who wants to help, but he has a sinister heart full of malice.
Third, being deceitful always wreaks havoc when you least expect it. One can’t continue to hide the truth. Theo’s wife had an affair. Her transgressions took her husband down a twisted path of revenge. Things could have turned out differently had Theo confronted his wife about her infidelity.
I am not fond of macabre stories. I like books that uplift the human spirit and bring hope. The story of The Silent Patient made me lose my faith in humanity. It horrifies me that so many people enjoyed this novel. The character Theo Faber is a menace to society. It is beyond comprehension that he can work as a psychotherapist. The end of the novel gave me a sick feeling deep inside my heart and soul.
The conclusion made me more cognizant of the lack of humanity we currently see in today’s world. In the last decade, we have seen more senseless killing rampages than ever before. I can’t help but question what led these individuals to commit these acts.
How can we prevent such tragedies? Perhaps we can start by encouraging people to get counseling instead of allowing resentments to turn them into raging lunatics.
Next, I think as a society we need to speak up when we see wrong propounded as a good thing. The message conveyed in The Silent Patient should be a major rebuke. Instead, we see droves of people giving this book five-star reviews. We have become a society riddled with depravity and insanity.
Finally, life will always have challenges, but one must handle those challenges responsibly. One must never substitute good for evil. We need to set examples for future generations by being morally competent.