Amy writes that Nick’s mother, Maureen, has died. She stayed positive until the end, even in hospice. Her wake attracted hundreds of friends and neighbors, and Nick seemed all right through it all. But now, a month later, Nick is not the “doting, loving” husband he’d briefly become again. He doesn’t want anything to do with Amy at all—he only “uses [her] for sex when he needs to” and seems zombie-like in his day to day life. Amy is upset that her marriage is disintegrating, and she has no clue what to do. She has been going over to Noelle’s house every day to spend time with Noelle and her sweet children, and one day, she gets an idea.
In Amy’s diary, she writes of her and Nick’s relationship—recently bolstered by love and connection—taking a swift nosedive. Amy has a life that Nick doesn’t know about, or doesn’t care to, based on his disaffected and disconnected way of moving through the world in the wake of his mother’s death.
That evening, after Nick roughly has sex with Amy up against a wall, she asks him if it’s the “right time” for them to try and start a family. Nick coldly rebuffs Amy’s plea, claiming it’s the “worst time” to start a family. He says he doesn’t want to be “one of those couples who has a kid to fix their marriage,” and he grabs Amy by the arms. He tells her that he can’t take any more pressure—he is about to “snap.”
As Amy’s diary entries progress, she paints Nick as an increasingly unstable and violent figure. Information that will soon come to light casts all of these diary entries into doubt—but as always, Flynn has Amy render these painful scenes artfully enough that they seem to be based in at least a kernel of truth about the underlying state of her marriage to Nick.