The Girl on the Train

she was so used to lies

Trust is about listening to your gut instincts. It is weighing up the facts, as you believe those facts to be. We do this from birth onwards. In all areas of life. We do our best to work out who and what we can believe.

In The Girl on the Train (by British author Paula Hawkins) we are faced with a conundrum related to belief. We aren’t sure if the narrator is someone we should trust. We get the sense she’s cagey, and is unreliable.

For example, we know Rachel gets drunk, that she has blackouts and tells lies. Hence, she could have been mistaken when she tells us what she’s seen (a crime that we’re drawn into, and we also want to solve.)

And there are more reasons to doubt her – for she’s jealous of the life her ex-husband has formed with his new baby and young wife. A family Rachel’s stalking for a large part of the book.

But maybe Tom’s too charming, and he’s not the man he seems. There’s hints of an affair, and of a darker, scary side.

Perhaps he’s not trustworthy? Should we start to question him? We feel our head is spinning. We don’t know what we should think.

I won’t reveal the ending. You might want to read the book. But this highlights a struggle and a very basic truth …

That life is complicated if we don’t know who to trust.  

If you have been gaslighted by a person in your life – who said your intuitions and your judgments were all wrong – you’ll know how very hard it is to figure out what’s real, to always feel uncertain, and to question everything.

6 thoughts on “The Girl on the Train

  1. I’ve written about both this book, and the Dr. Foster series. People underestimate betrayal trauma and its affects on people. Criticisms in reviews of both talk about how these two female characters are not believable. I found them both (post my own betrayal trauma), absolutely believable.

    Liked by 4 people

  2. It gets even harder when the bane of your life you have been the “victim” in a string of toxic / abusive relationships and then suddenly you find yourself lashing out and behaving in ways that are out of sync with your own morally code.

    Why here? Why now? Why at all? To not even be able to answer these questions.

    The most disconcerting thing I have experienced bar none, having been the victim of both infidelity and separately sex addiction, is to not know who or what to believe about our OWN selves anymore. To stare at the mirror and not recognize ourselves. To have seemingly lost our way.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Yes, it is so very painful to feel you have lost yourself, and to not be able to reconnect with the person you were because you have gone through so much. Betrayal definitely changes us. Recovery is possible but it also slow. The deeper the damage the more time and work it takes for any kind of healing at all. I really feel for you bostongirl It sounds like you have been through a LOT.

      Liked by 2 people

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