"But that it would have been better for me if my wife could have helped me more, and shared the many thoughts in which I had no partner; and that this might have been; I knew. "
Here, through David, Charles Dickens seems to express his own desire for such a wife. He criticized his wife, Catherine, for not being a better partner, and he eventually looked to his sister-in-law, Georgina, as his confidante.

When Charles and Catherine later separated in 1858, Georgina sided with her brother-in-law, and mothered the nine Dickens children who remained with Charles in the family home, while Catherine and Charles Dickens, Jr. (1837-1896) moved from the residence.

It was at the time of the separation that Charles Dickens felt the need to justify publicly his marital circumstances by writing an article about the situation in his journal, Household Words.