The Depiction of Loneliness in Notes On A Scandal

This film conveys the different types of loneliness one can feel, as it is not a one size fits all emotion.


Barbara is lonely in that she drives everyone she is close to away. She wants friends only when they are her friend and not associated with anyone else.

Her loneliness makes her feel emotions deeply. Any type of infatuation turns into an obsession. She seems to befriend people who know nothing about her or are new to her workplace or the city. Once they bond, she perceives the friendship o be a romantic relationship. She expects this person to be emotionally and physically available 24/7. She takes any rejection to heart and devises a plan to make them regret ever rejecting her.


Sheba is in an odd marriage. Everything seems okay on the surface, but after talking to Barbara, she disclosed her life may not be as picture-perfect as we thought. Sheba is reentering the workforce after being a stay-at-home mom for some time to care for her special needs son.

She married young and has also been out of the dating pool for a while. The feeling of being wanted and desired by another was something she had not felt in a while. It can be seen in how she became absolutely enamored by her student. She blushes when he talks to her, and the way she acts around him is way different than her demeanor around her family. He made her feel special.

Older / Younger Relationships

Every relationship in this film was between an older and younger character. Barbara is attracted to Sheba, who is younger than her, and Sheba is married to an older man and has an affair with her teenage student. I found this to be particularly interesting.

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