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10 Most Dysfunctional Literary Couples

Roses are red, violets are blue, when it comes to relationships, these characters have no clue.

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1. Macbeth and Lady Macbeth (MACBETH)

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These two take the whole “Bonnie and Clyde” thing to another level. After they kill the king, Macbeth is killed and Lady Macbeth goes crazy. We saw that coming.

2. Bella and Edward (TWILIGHT)

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Ah, vampire/human romances … they’re everywhere. This one is kind of obvious. Edward drools when he looks at Bella (like in a “you’re my next meal” kind of way), and he watches her sleep. Not the healthiest relationship dynamic.

3. Heathcliff and Catherine (WUTHERING HEIGHTS)

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These two have a great friendship as kids and then everything goes wrong. Catherine decides to marry someone else, Heathcliff does the same, and in his bitter, unhappy marriage, Heathcliff begins to plot the destruction of everyone around him.

4. Dylia and Micah (CONTROL)

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Dylia and Micah’s relationship begins as a cute flirtation, but soon we learn that one of them is not who they say they are. Their initial flirtation turns into one of them controlling the other’s mind. Imbalance of power + deception = relationship dysfunction.

5. Tom and Daisy Buchanan (THE GREAT GATSBY)

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Tom is having multiple affairs and playing polo while Daisy is hanging out with an old fling. Not only do they treat each other like dirt, they also step on everyone around them. It’s all about the money with these two.

6. Mr. and Mrs. Dalloway (MRS. DALLOWAY)

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Mr. and Mrs. Dalloway have a pretty sad marriage. Since these two can’t even have a conversation together, Mr. Dalloway decides to tell his wife that he loves her, but chickens out and brings a bouquet of roses home instead. Sounds like they need some marriage counseling.

7. Voldemort and Bellatrix Lestrange (HARRY POTTER)

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This relationship is definitely one-sided. Voldemort is so obsessed with Harry and splitting his own soul that he doesn’t notice that Bellatrix is obviously coming onto him. Bellatrix goes to Azkaban and the Dark Lord doesn’t even visit her (it’d be hard since he didn’t have a body at the time), but still!

8. Nick and Amy (GONE GIRL)

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Nothing says dysfunctional relationship like a murder mystery between a couple in Missouri. Amy disappears and Nick is one of the suspects -- so did he do it? Hard to go into details without ruining the ending, but trust us, this couple has some serious issues.

9. Cathy and Adam (EAST OF EDEN)

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Well, Cathy shot Adam in the shoulder while abandoning her newborn sons, so I would say these two should make the list. Cathy is a control freak and Adam lets her control him. When they first met, Cathy drugged Adam and hooked up with his brother, so obviously she is not very stable.

10. Hester Prynn and Arthur Dimmesdale (THE SCARLET LETTER)

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Hester Prynn is pregnant with Arthur’s baby, but there’s only one problem: he’s a priest and they’re not married. Hester is harassed for having a baby out of wedlock and Arthur never turns himself in until he’s on his deathbed. This couple is doomed from the start.

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