In the novel, "The Lovely Bones," by Alice Sebold, the main character, Susie Salmon, is raped and murdered by her new neighbor, George Harvey, when walking home from school. Throughout the read she describes her experience in Heaven and how things are going on Earth. Her main focus is on her family's progress through the horrific experience. One of the biggest problems among her family in the living world is her parents' relationship. In the early months after Susie's death, Jack and Abigail's relationship could be best described as falling apart. As the book progresses, there is much evidence of a lost love between Jack and Abigail. Abigail is the main reason for the falling out. It starts from her cheating on Jack and all the way to her even moving to a different state! She doesn't feel like the mother she once was and longs a return to her life before being a mother. A life of being just Abigail.
Abigail's cheating comes as a great shock. More so because of who it is with. She first cheats in the hospital with Len Fenerman, the main detective investigating Susie's murder. Jack is in the hospital after he tries to find Mr. Harvey in the corn field to kill him. When in the corn field he tackles who he thinks is Mr. Harvey but it is actually Clarissa. Brian comes to her "rescue" and beats Jack with his own bat. This is how they end up in the hospital in the first place. When Abigail is checking on him in the hospital, Len comes in as a request from Abigail. The two go out on the hospital balcony and begin to speak about "[their] daughter's murder." She then asks him to repeat this and she kisses him. This is not the only time she cheats with Len though. Later in the story she cheats with him again, but this time it can not be described here.
As Abigail can not cope with Susie's death and the way that Jack is acting, she leaves the family for a long while. Her emotional absence from the family is really breaking them all apart, mainly her and Jack.