Short Stories of Ernest Hemingway

Why does Helen refuse to listen to her husband when he tells her that he is, indeed, dying? How does Harry suffer due to her denial?

A dying husband would probably most prefer to just sit in peace, perhaps holding hands with his wife, or remembering the good times. Instead, Helen refuses to believe Harry is actually dying, even though he tells her he realizes he is dying. It is said that when the body has begun the death process, a person can feel it, and Harry is correct -- he is dying. Why does Helen refuse to listen to her husband when he tells her that he is, indeed, dying? How does Harry suffer due to her denial?

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