Pontellier writes Edna to say that he does not approve of her relocation—he is worried about what his business partners might think. To mask the awkwardness of the situation, he decides to remodel their house: such a project would serve as an excuse for Edna’s move. Edna feels happier and freer in her new home.
Pontellier is more concerned with maintaining the appearance of a happy marriage than with the marriage itself. One might conjecture that the distinction between marriage and the appearance of marriage does not exist for him.
Soon after the move, Edna goes to visit the children, who are staying in the countryside with Pontellier’s mother. She has a lovely time, and is sad to leave them—but when she returns to the city she is glad to be alone again.
Edna loves her children when she is with them, but she does not love them anymore (or thinks she doesn’t) when they’re out of sight. Without the glue of convention, her emotions are very inconsistent.