How She faced pressure from the suitorsHow She faced pressure from the suitors

How do you react when you encounter challenging circumstances? Do you feel discouraged and give up or do you face the problem? Do you try to receive help from people like your friends?” In the novel, The Penelopiad, Margaret Atwood develops the idea that even though individuals often feel upset and frustrated towards challenging circumstance, they try to overcome it and sometimes seek help from others. Penelope, the main narrator of the novel, was put into challenging circumstances after her husband, Odysseus, left to Troy. She faced pressure from the suitors to marry one of them. This caused her to feel upset and frustrated that she often “would lie on her bed and weep” (pg.109). Her reaction to this situation is similar to how many people react when they face problems. For instance, when I had to make difficult decisions, I felt quite unsettled and even cried, similar to Penelope. In addition, when Telemachus left Ithaca in search of news of Odysseus without informing Penelope, she “cried so much she thought she would turn into a river or a fountain” (pg.121). This shows how sadnesses and frustration were the most dominant emotions Penelope felt when she faced challenging circumstances. During these difficult situations, Penelope did not give up and instead, tried to overcome the problem. When she was pressured to marry one of the suitors, she devised a clever plan. She “kept thinking of a way to postpone the day of decision” (pg.112). Her plan was to explain to the suitors that she would pick her new husband once she finished weaving a shroud for Laertes. However, this shroud would never be completed as she would unweave it at night. This shows how she attempted to overcome her challenging circumstances. This is similar to when I faced problems while working on a project for school. I came up with a plan in order to finish it on time. This shows that individuals try to find ways to overcome the problems they are facing. Despite her effort to resolve her frustrating situations, she was not able to solely solve the problem on her own and she needed help from her maids. She chose “twelve of her  maidservants – the youngest ones” (pg.113) to help her with the shroud. In addition, the maids helped her “spy” (pg.115) on the suitors. Without them, her plan would not have worked. Penelope would not have been able to unweave the shroud alone. The maids also helped her to gain information about the suitors and their plans. When I had to solve difficult problems in the past, I also needed help from others. My friends often helped me when with school work. My friends played a similar role to the maids who helped Penelope in the novel. The ideas Margaret Atwood develops in the novel regarding individuals’ reactions to challenging circumstances is shown through Penelope actions. When encountered problems, she often wept about her situation, but she always tried to overcome these challenges. She was able to successfully solve her problems as a result of the help she received from her maids. Penelope’s responses towards her problematic situation was similar to the way I personally reacted to challenging circumstances.