The Painful Consequences of Infidelity as Depicted in “Doctor Cha”

“Doctor Cha” portrays the harsh reality of extramarital affair and its consequences, highlighting the pain and despair of those affected.

“Doctor Cha” depicts many real-life issues that happen within families and married life. The main character is a housewife who has lost herself in a cold and distant marriage, determined to break free from her constraints and reclaim her identity that has been hidden away for 20 years.

doctor cha

Doctor Cha Jung Sook is a caring mother and wife, forgiving even in unhappy and unfulfilling circumstances. However, a crisis occurs that motivates Doctor Cha to pursue her passion.

Her husband, Professor Seo In Ho, a highly respected doctor at work, is selfish and indifferent to his wife. He has a mistress and an illegitimate child.

Perhaps the most emotionally explosive moments across the drama so far are all in episode 8, when the extramarital affair of the husband is exposed.

Even his own mother and children turn away from him 

Learning the truth from her granddaughter, Seo In Ho’s mother cannot bring herself to defend her son.

The mother-in-law is furious and, in frustration, asks her son, “How could you do this? Are you still human? You are a disgrace. How could you have done that while your wife and mistress work in the same hospital?

Seo In Ho’s daughter is in pain and despair, crying on the street and locking herself in her room. She looks at her father with hatred. 

His son accidentally reads a message from Seo In Ho’s mistress and sees them hugging. Even worse, Seo In Ho uses the excuse of “men being men” to try to gain his son’s sympathy.

But the son cannot compromise and says, “I used to want to be a good doctor like you, but I don’t respect you anymore. I’m disappointed in you, Dad.

He even feels nauseous facing his father’s betrayal, illegitimate child, and living in an environment where everyone knows except for his happy and unaware mother.

And all the remaining family members want to avoid causing further pain to the woman who sacrificed herself for the family for 20 years.

“Once you have an affair, you lose all respect”

Perhaps the most expensive part is the conversation among the four individuals with the heaviest emotional burdens. They hide their different emotions to celebrate the birthday of Cha Jung Sook, the only woman who doesn’t know about her husband cheating on her. 

Doctor Cha

Daughter: How did Dad become like this? He wasn’t raised right.

Mother: Just because I gave birth to your father doesn’t mean I know everything about him.

Son: Don’t scold her, Dad. You have no right to.

Mother: That’s right, I raised you poorly, and I should be criticized for it. See, once you have an affair, you lose all respect.

Even the mistress and the illegitimate child do not respect Seo In Ho. The daughter of the mistress quietly arranged to expose everything and smiled smugly at her mother: “I did what you couldn’t do for 20 years.

Confronting the mistress’ daughter, Cha Jung Sook’s daughter clenches her fists to assert her position and protect her family: “My mother is the victim, your mother is the home-wrecker, the mistress. My father is also your father. Do you think it’s okay when your mother is a mistress, your father is an adulterer, and you are the child of a couple of adulterers?

The most dangerous consequence is the selfishness of adults that directly hurts their children.

No woman sacrifices for nothing

On her birthday, Cha Jung Sook is the last person in the family to discover her husband’s affair. Without showing pain or weakness, she dressed beautifully, went to the restaurant, and put her husband’s face into the birthday cake before taking her suitcase and leaving for a trip. 

Having been challenged through many hardships, what can bring a woman like Cha Jung Sook down? Pressing her husband’s head into the cake is just the opening act for what he has to pay for his misdeeds. 

Although it is a tragedy in the drama, the dialogues of the characters reflect reality. Life forces you to choose, like women putting aside their careers to take care of their families, or men choosing adventurous games instead of a peaceful life.

Whether it’s a cheating scandal, argument, or divorce, the damage caused by infidelity is not just the burden of one victim.

Cheating is not just a momentary feeling for those who can’t resist temptation. Infidelity is a self-made full-stop for a whole family, for the love of a wife, for the future of children, and even for one’s own honor.

Source: k14.

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