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paula_02912
Posts: 492
Registered: ‎12-18-2007
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Re: Fran

pjpick wrote: "I wondered how she would adapt if they found Kim--it just seemed all consuming for her--almost her identity. (should mention here haven't read the whole book yet)."
 
pj, I felt the same thing too...In the margins I wrote that not finding Kim enabled Fran to have an identity...as time went by with no word about Kim, she then tried to retransform herself into wife, Fran, in which she tries to rekindle her relationship with her husband, as is evidenced in the way she prepares the house for his return from Sandusky as well as going out with him on the boat...it seems that Fran needed something to define who she was...otherwise she would feel like she had no sense of purpose...
Peace and love,
Paula R.

"Adversity causes some people to break, but causes others to break records."

Author Unknown
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wendyroba
Posts: 58
Registered: ‎02-21-2007
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Re: Fran

As someone who works in the medical field, I can tell you rarely do medical professionals seek help for themselves. They are trained to be professional and calm in tragic circumstances and believe they can handle anything. I suffered PTSD after a search I participated in where we found the body of a person who had killed himself. Never once did I think of getting help for myself even though I couldn't sleep and was having nightmares when I did. And although I told people what I was going through, not one person suggested I should go talk to a professional...perhaps they thought that since I *was* a medical professional, I would know to do this if I needed it.



detailmuse wrote:
Maybe because they work in the ER, where the focus is on the immediate crisis, not the long-term. The ER triages and stabilizes and then usually sends the patient elsewhere to be "fixed." Kudos to O'Nan, nice symbolism: I think Fran's style in early days of Kim's disappearance was quite ER-like.

the_mad_chatter wrote:
[Fran]'s in the medical field and yet her friends don't suggest therapy? Disappointing.





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pjpick
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Registered: ‎03-16-2007
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Re: Fran

Wendyroba, I agree with you. I am in the medical field as well (an RN) and we can face many tragic incidents but it seems to be our culture that "we just carry on" and I'm not just meaning just carry on past our shift--it's supposed to be part of our job to handle these things (as horrible as they may be). It seems they'll suggest you get help for PTSD long after an event has occurred when I believe the best PTSD treatment is too start ASAP. I can see fire departments, police departments, and the military also having the same culture as well. I think it is a good insight of O'Nan's to make this correlation of "carry on" with Fran during Kim's disappearance.
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bmbrennan
Posts: 153
Registered: ‎02-28-2007
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Re: Fran

imo no, not self-absorbed but yes, not providing for the rest of her family. A terrible, difficult situation: the parent is justifiably not able to provide ... yet the kids are justifiably in need of being provided for...
 
 
 
Lindsay's not really a child here, she's 16 so I feel she understands where the priorities are with finding Kim.  I don't think Lindsay feels neglected by lack of attention.  You have a family of four, which abruptly becomes three without any perceptible reason.  The Larsens go to bed as a small town middle class family and wake up to an all consuming nightmare.  They don't know why it happened, how it could have happened, when it could have happened (you have an 18 hour timeframe) or where she(Kim) could be/is now.  Trying to answer any or all of these questions is daunting to a parent in this situation.
 
 
bmbrennan
When the eagles are silent, the parrots begin to jabber. Churchill
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bmbrennan
Posts: 153
Registered: ‎02-28-2007
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Re: Fran

Wendyroba, I agree with you. I am in the medical field as well (an RN) and we can face many tragic incidents but it seems to be our culture that "we just carry on" and I'm not just meaning just carry on past our shift--it's supposed to be part of our job to handle these things (as horrible as they may be). It seems they'll suggest you get help for PTSD long after an event has occurred when I believe the best PTSD treatment is too start ASAP. I can see fire departments, police departments, and the military also having the same culture as well. I think it is a good insight of O'Nan's to make this correlation of "carry on" with Fran during Kim's disappearance
 
 
 
PTSD doesn't always present immediately.  As for Fran not seeking or others telling her to get help, maybe they feel that she is acting as a mother who has a missing child still missing.  And as nurses we don't go to doctors, we diagnose ourselves(either alone or by committee meaning other RN's) and get a resident to write our prescriptions, further reinforcing our own mantra of we don't need doctors the public does. 
bmbrennan
When the eagles are silent, the parrots begin to jabber. Churchill
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the_mad_chatter
Posts: 323
Registered: ‎01-26-2008
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Re: Fran

Another poster had written "Middle America" and I borrowed it.  I meant it to refer to everyone and no one in particular.
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Peppermill
Posts: 6,768
Registered: ‎04-04-2007
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Re: Fran



the_mad_chatter wrote:
For me, again it was the excess of her efforts concentrated on things that did not matter that bothered me. I have nothing but praise for those families who pushed for changes in the law. Who gave us the amber alerts. Who cried that the back of milk cartons was not enough. I am so grateful that out of their grief came something so incredibly positive. The awareness they've accomplished is amazing. I don't see Fran in this league. I don't begrudge her the Ambien but I feel she could have been a better mother to Lindsay.





Although as worthy (or not) as those contributions have been, some who have championed them or similar causes been have indeed been "drama queens" -- perhaps sometimes justifiably and out of necessity for the effort. For Fran's considerably lower-key, but still important, efforts, see p. 247.
"Seize the moments of happiness, love and be loved! That is the only reality in the world, all else is folly. It is the one thing we are interested in here." -- Leo Tolstoy
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the_mad_chatter
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Re: Fran

Hi Peppermill,
I wonder if we can apply the triage analogy to this point on page 247 in the chapter where Ed and Fran go fishing.  Fran tells us that Ed is grieving and she doesn't like the way he's drawn into himself.  She wishes she had his support.  The last sentence says "If she could spare one family what they'd been through, it would be worth it".  If we attempt to do triage on the situation at this point in time, what is first priority?  What wound needs the attention?  I would say their marriage and I think Fran sees their marriage in need of triage at this point as well.  Here's my problem...the boat.  We all know how I feel about their keeping the boat.  I would have had more optimism on their future if they had one last memory on that boat then sold the thing.  I would have seen this as growth on both their parts.  Instead I feel that this is a half hearted effort and it left me sad and incredibly pessimistic on their happy future.
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Peppermill
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Registered: ‎04-04-2007
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Re: Fran

[ Edited ]

the_mad_chatter wrote:
Hi Peppermill,
I wonder if we can apply the triage analogy to this point on page 247 in the chapter where Ed and Fran go fishing. Fran tells us that Ed is grieving and she doesn't like the way he's drawn into himself. She wishes she had his support. The last sentence says "If she could spare one family what they'd been through, it would be worth it". If we attempt to do triage on the situation at this point in time, what is first priority? What wound needs the attention? I would say their marriage and I think Fran sees their marriage in need of triage at this point as well. Here's my problem...the boat. We all know how I feel about their keeping the boat. I would have had more optimism on their future if they had one last memory on that boat then sold the thing. I would have seen this as growth on both their parts. Instead I feel that this is a half hearted effort and it left me sad and incredibly pessimistic on their happy future.





Hi, Mad Chatter -- I guess I feel quite differently about the boat than you do -- maybe because I don't see it as necessarily a particularly large investment and because it apparently brought considerable comfort to Ed and Fran. Many mid-western lake fishing boats are not a big deal (although some certainly are), unlike most ocean-worthy boats. It certainly didn't sound like it was a new boat at this point, even if they had purchased it as such. Fran and Ed are apparently able to send Lindsay to the college of her choice and to retain a detective who provided no results, so while strapped, I am not certain how dire their financial situation is.

Could selling the boat, letting go of the memories, and taking up other activities have been healthier? Perhaps. But I found this a very realistic scenario, given my own foot-dragging in letting go of property with family memories attached to it.

Pepper

PS -- I agree with you on the triage analogy about the importance of their marriage -- with the possible addition of care for Lindsay -- but they were spending time taking her college hunting.

Message Edited by Peppermill on 06-09-2008 07:54 PM
"Seize the moments of happiness, love and be loved! That is the only reality in the world, all else is folly. It is the one thing we are interested in here." -- Leo Tolstoy
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the_mad_chatter
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Re: Fran

So Peppermill, where do you see Fran and Ed 2 years later?
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Peppermill
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Re: Fran (Contains end of story spoiler info)



the_mad_chatter wrote:
So Peppermill, where do you see Fran and Ed 2 years later?





Possibly planning Lindsay's wedding? We know who will arrange for the tents in the back yard, but poor Lindsay if she has to endure her Mom's planning mania.

Seriously, my crystal ball is totally cloudy tonight, although I do think O'Nan leaves us with the sense that Fran and Ed will beat the odds for marriages in the face of the death of a child and manage to remain together.

Pepper
"Seize the moments of happiness, love and be loved! That is the only reality in the world, all else is folly. It is the one thing we are interested in here." -- Leo Tolstoy
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the_mad_chatter
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Re: Fran (Contains end of story spoiler info)

I see Ed and Fran unable to recover financially partly because of the subprime mess the country is in and mostly because of the expenses incurred before and during Kim's disappearance.  Perhaps Fran will be able to triage the marriage but I doubt it.  Lindsay will distance herself from her parents both physically and emotionally and will call home on Sundays out of duty to endure a 3 minute conversation where everyone discusses mundane things like eating correctly and checking the oil in her car. 
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kiakar
Posts: 3,435
Registered: ‎10-19-2006
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Re: Fran



detailmuse wrote:
"middle America" ... please tell me more. When I think of self-indulgence in the now at the expense of the future, I think of Hollywood (personal) and Wall Street (business/finance).

the_mad_chatter wrote:
Ah, nice.  Another example of how O'Nan uses Fran as a metaphor for middle america.  Focusing on the now and not looking at tomorrow.

Oh! yes! Detailmuse!   You hit it right on the marker! Someone better take off the rose colored glasses and see that indulgence does not indulge in Middle America but at the next highest level.


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kiakar
Posts: 3,435
Registered: ‎10-19-2006
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Re: Fran



bmbrennan wrote:
imo no, not self-absorbed but yes, not providing for the rest of her family. A terrible, difficult situation: the parent is justifiably not able to provide ... yet the kids are justifiably in need of being provided for...
 
 
 
Lindsay's not really a child here, she's 16 so I feel she understands where the priorities are with finding Kim.  I don't think Lindsay feels neglected by lack of attention.  You have a family of four, which abruptly becomes three without any perceptible reason.  The Larsens go to bed as a small town middle class family and wake up to an all consuming nightmare.  They don't know why it happened, how it could have happened, when it could have happened (you have an 18 hour timeframe) or where she(Kim) could be/is now.  Trying to answer any or all of these questions is daunting to a parent in this situation.
 
 


I think you are right, Lindsay is old enought to realize this is happening to her parents as well as her. I think under the circumstances they all were kind and respectful to each other.
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kiakar
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Re: Fran (Contains end of story spoiler info)



the_mad_chatter wrote:
I see Ed and Fran unable to recover financially partly because of the subprime mess the country is in and mostly because of the expenses incurred before and during Kim's disappearance.  Perhaps Fran will be able to triage the marriage but I doubt it.  Lindsay will distance herself from her parents both physically and emotionally and will call home on Sundays out of duty to endure a 3 minute conversation where everyone discusses mundane things like eating correctly and checking the oil in her car. 


Yes, I am sure it will take alot of time, to be able to sit and talk about Kim at the table but I think eventually they will and they will have loving memories to recall to each other.

 
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kiakar
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Re: Fran (Contains end of story spoiler info)



Peppermill wrote:


the_mad_chatter wrote:
So Peppermill, where do you see Fran and Ed 2 years later?





Possibly planning Lindsay's wedding? We know who will arrange for the tents in the back yard, but poor Lindsay if she has to endure her Mom's planning mania.

Seriously, my crystal ball is totally cloudy tonight, although I do think O'Nan leaves us with the sense that Fran and Ed will beat the odds for marriages in the face of the death of a child and manage to remain together.

Pepper


Yes, I really feel that way also.  I think Fran and Ed will continue to work out their difficulties. They both seem willing to work and not just lay back in agony and moan another lost, themselves together.
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the_mad_chatter
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Registered: ‎01-26-2008
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Re: Fran

Don't kid yourselves, indulgence is everywhere and often times it's our neighbors' possessions that convince us that we deserve that boat, new diamond ring, expensive private school.
kiakar wrote:


detailmuse wrote:
"middle America" ... please tell me more. When I think of self-indulgence in the now at the expense of the future, I think of Hollywood (personal) and Wall Street (business/finance).

the_mad_chatter wrote:
Ah, nice.  Another example of how O'Nan uses Fran as a metaphor for middle america.  Focusing on the now and not looking at tomorrow.

Oh! yes! Detailmuse!   You hit it right on the marker! Someone better take off the rose colored glasses and see that indulgence does not indulge in Middle America but at the next highest level.





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the_mad_chatter
Posts: 323
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Re: Fran

I thought that Lindsay felt neglected by lack of proper attention before Kim's disappearance.  I don't know that she would have had the experience or maturity to see the priority months and months after Kim's disappearance.

kiakar wrote:


bmbrennan wrote:
imo no, not self-absorbed but yes, not providing for the rest of her family. A terrible, difficult situation: the parent is justifiably not able to provide ... yet the kids are justifiably in need of being provided for...
 
 
 
Lindsay's not really a child here, she's 16 so I feel she understands where the priorities are with finding Kim.  I don't think Lindsay feels neglected by lack of attention.  You have a family of four, which abruptly becomes three without any perceptible reason.  The Larsens go to bed as a small town middle class family and wake up to an all consuming nightmare.  They don't know why it happened, how it could have happened, when it could have happened (you have an 18 hour timeframe) or where she(Kim) could be/is now.  Trying to answer any or all of these questions is daunting to a parent in this situation.
 
 


I think you are right, Lindsay is old enought to realize this is happening to her parents as well as her. I think under the circumstances they all were kind and respectful to each other.



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the_mad_chatter
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Re: Fran (Contains end of story spoiler info)

But consider all those years of hurt and blame in the mean time!  Oh counseling, where art thou?
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KxBurns
Posts: 1,006
Registered: ‎09-06-2007
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Re: Fran



pjpick wrote:
I haven't read all the posts so please forgive me if I'm repeating an observation/opinion.  I think Fran had resigned herself at a much earlier stage than Ed that Kim was gone.  Instead of a search and find effort the search effort would now be a recovery (of the body) effort whereas I think Ed was still frantically hoping to find Kim alive. On page 127 it reads, "She let Lindsay take her place and saw that she still had her book.  Cooper yapped, jealous, It reminded her of a game they played--just  a thing they used to do, a little in-joke.  Ed probably started it. Whenever all of them were clumped together in a small space like the kitchen, the first person to notice would call "Whole family in one room." She hadn't thought about it in those terms--it was probably bad luck--but this was their whole family now."
 
Having said that I also think the search effort became Fran's "vocation"--she was constantly organizing fliers, bracelets, and many other events to get the word out about Kim. I wondered how she would adapt if they found Kim--it just seemed all consuming for her--almost her identity. (should mention here haven't read the whole book yet).


I had forgotten about the "whole family in one room" joke. That was a nice touch and presented a view of the family as having been perhaps closer at one time than they are at the time we meet them.
 
Intriguing question about Fran -- I think we can ponder the same question about any of the characters, but certainly Fran is the one most transformed by the seach itself, as opposed to the loss of Kim.
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