Showtime's latest show The Affair had its climactic season finale Sunday night leaving viewers with a major cliffhanger and underlying lessons.
The season followed the extramarital affair between Noah (Dominic West) and Alison (Ruth Wilson), as well as the people they hurt along the way. As the couple's affair heated up, revelations about their lives surfaced, including Alison's pain of losing her son and Noah's struggle to feel successful.
Their romance also brought forward several takeaways on love. Below are ten of them.
1) Lust can be a dangerous thing:
Noah seemed to have a close to perfect life with his wife Helen (Maura Tierney) and their four children. Yet, one encounter with Alison, an attractive waitress, during a family getaway in Montauk ultimately leads to Noah losing his family. It also led to his arrest in the season finale.
2) Love is viewed differently:
Noah and Alison's recollection of the past was so vastly different that it was impossible to tell which view was accurate. In Noah's view, Alison pursued him, while she remembered many occurrences quite oppositely.
3) People aren't who they seem:
As Noah and Alison's relationship became more serious, her secrets started to unravel like her involvement in a drug dealing scandal.
4) Love fades:
Noah's friend Max (Josh Stamberg) attempted twice to talk him out of his affair with Alison. In one scene, Noah defends his love for Alison, but Max reminds him he once loved his wife too.
5) No one's relationship is as it seems:
Many, including Max and Noah's book editor, seemed to think he had the perfect wife, except for him. According to Noah, Helen rarely made him feel like he was successful or a provider. He even blamed her for their older daughter Whitney's (Julia Goldani Telles) cyber bullying.
6) Don't just blame the third party:
In the last episode, Cole (Joshua Jackson) only seemed to hate and put blame on Noah for his affair with Alison. Yet - as Alison even told him - she makes her own choices. In other words, he was mad at the wrong person.
7) Don't forgive the unforgivable:
Despite Noah's infidelity and his lackluster attempt to win her love back, Helen told him to come home. Yet, he quickly made it clear why she should have never even considered it when he chose to stay with Alison instead of comforting his family after Cole threatened to shoot them.
8) You can't force someone to love you:
Alison's husband Cole proved his love for her many times, yet she pushed him away because he was a constant reminder of their late son. In the end, no matter how hard you try, you can't make someone feel something they don't.
9) Don't let a relationship come in the way of your children:
Noah began to put his children second after his relationship with Alison started. Instead of leaving from Montauk with his family as Helen recommended at the beginning of the summer, Noah urged them to stay allowing Whitney to get into trouble.
10) Don't assume people stay the same:
During a therapy session, Helen told Noah she married him because he was "safe." Yet, he proved to be far from a secure choice.