Throughout Secret Woman, a short story by Colette, there are surprisingly few secrets, especially concerning Irene, the main subject of the story and the narrator’s wife.
The nature of short stories makes telling any tale with great detail a monumental undertaking. To skirt along this limit, Colette chose instead to pursue a single scene of a longer story with enough detail that it sends a message by its lonesome.
She then proceeds to descriptively sculpt all of Irene’s indulgements for the night leaving the reader with very little that is hidden or inconclusive about the so-called “Secret Woman”. Colette portrays the narrator as disgusted and seemingly uninterested in his wife after he realizes the scope of her secondary personality, but the diction of the story in many cases suggests that the wife isn’t quite reliant on her husband for support and can take care of her self.
I would contend that the story is centered around the idea that only the husband thought he was special, and the contrast between his self perception and how his wife actually views him.