In the book “Eleanor and Park” “in love” is not really what I would call the relationship Eleanor and park had, Eleanor lied to be able to see park. She told him things she would not say to most people; for example, she let him get closer to her than any other person has ever got. I do not doubt that Eleanor had a strong care or love for Park, but the fact of the matter is, do I think Eleanor and Park were in love? After reading the book multiple times and doing research, I do not think she loved park.
Eleanor had a hard life with her family and just people around her in general, and Park was the first person to show her he actually cares for her. He accepted her for who she is and he did not care that she may dress like a boy, that her clothes are not from the latest style, and things of that nature. Eleanor was not use to having someone like that in her life, that was not of her immediate family. I do believe that Eleanor grew to care and love Park at a certain extent, for the fact that he loved her and he cared for her the way she was with no changed involved. In an article I read, and it stated, “But what if your feeling is wrong? What if you are just so damn scared of being alone that anyone who comes close to making you feel safe and secure feels like your soulmate? (Martin pg. 1).” Being in love and having this attachment to someone are completely different. How could Eleanor love someone, how could she be in love when she never even learned how to love herself? That right there is fact to me that Eleanor did not love Park at all, she thought she did.
Keeping Park away from her home, from her true self was the only way she felt she could really keep Park in her life, she was running away from the situation. Eleanor didn’t understand how Park fell in love with her no matter how difficult or broken she was, she thought it was too good to be true. Eleanor could not match his feelings though, she fell for the attention, for the feelings Park made her feel, for the idea of how someone could take her away from reality; which in reality she was this insecure girl who did not really understand herself. Park knew that Eleanor meant absolutely everything to him, he wanted to be with her threw it all. He knew that Eleanor was his future but she couldn’t say the same. In the book a conversation between “Eleanor and Park” they say, “do you really believe that?’ she said. “what?” “that… we’ll have other chances?” “That we have any chance at all? ‘yes.’… ‘I just can’t believe that life would give us to each other,’ he said, ‘and then just take it back.’ ‘I can,’ she said. ‘life’s a bastard.” (Rowell page 306)”, her mentality was so negative in the relationship with Park, that I do not even know how Park continued to deal with her he must have really loved her. She always turned him down and made him aware that there was no future, she did not allow him to even think they could have one, all in all he mostly killed all hope for them.
Eleanor couldn’t be in love with Park. She didn’t even know the definition of love when all was said and done. Maybe this whole book fooled us, and made us believe that the relationship they had was a love story. If she was in love with Park, why did she never take him home? Even with fear of never being able to see him, if she truly loved him she would have taken the risk, she would have done anything for him. Keeping him a secret from everyone close to her was no way to show how in love she was. Park wanted so bad to be a part of Eleanor and she never let him. She cared a lot about Park we read that, but not enough to call it being in love. Park would have done anything for Eleanor and his actions and words proved it, but her constant pushing away and not letting him come to close showed her actions did not match his. He even admitted to being in love with her he told her every chance he got not once did she ever say it back. For example, “it’s going to be okay,’ Park said. She nodded. ‘right’ ‘because I love you.’ She laughed. ‘is that why?’ ‘it is, actually.’ ‘goodbye,’ she said. Goodbye Park.’ (Rowell pg. 313)”, Eleanor just laughed at park because in his heart he felt the love he had for her can over power any problem. He felt that anything could be possible he could save her and be there for her but she took it as joke, almost like she took him and the love he had for her as a joke. Nothing I read ever gave away that she thought or felt in love with him like he did with her, or even thought to much of it. It was like he said it and it was just as meaningful as any other word he ever told her.
Eleanor could never let Park in that deep, she would never let Park believe in a future with her. I see the whole relationship was Park pushing forward and Eleanor pushing away to be honest. Being in love meant that no matter how broken other people made you, no matter how many walls you put up to protect yourself, if she was truly in love she would have let all that go she could have let her guard down and let Park in and trust that he wanted her and trust that he was not going to break her or hurt her. No matter how hard it may seem to do that, to let someone in, if you really wanted that person you would have done it, there are so many other solutions Eleanor could have done other than handle ling the situation the way she did. All the things she could have did would have made the situation that much better, she would have made the other person happier. She wasn’t in love. She didn’t want him that bad to allow him to do those things. She would have never been able to give him up that easy, to distance herself so much, to ignore him all together. At the end of this story I have come to agreement that Eleanor never feel in love with Park, only felt what it was like to be loved.
Rowell, Rainbow. Eleanor & Park. New York: St. Martin’
Martin, Lauren. “The Difference Between Being in Love and Just Being Attached.” Elite Daily. N.p., 15 Sept. 2015. Web. 11 Apr. 2017.[embeddoc url=”https://1afall16.files.wordpress.com/2017/04/cd797d02342bbcea8ae1b478e9ce5a32-1.png” download=”all”]