By the end of Kathryn Stockett's novel, The Help, Skeeter's book about "the help" has been published. Aibileen stands up to Hilly when Hilly threatens to accuse Aibileen of stealing. Aibileen speaks her mind: she tells Hilly that she can write, and knows a great deal about Hilly: information that she would be willing to share with others in town. Hilly backs off. Elizabeth does not interfere as Hilly pushes her to fire the black woman, so Aibileen walks away from her job caring for Mae Mobley.
Skeeter receives a job offer in New York and has spent the end of the novel getting ready and saying good-bye. She knows that Constantie is dead. Minnie is still working for Celia, and has been promised a job there as long as she wishes. She leaves her abusive husband and takes the children with her.
The story ends on a hopeful note: Aibileen will take over Skeeter's job at the newspaper which will provide her with some money, and the book will also produce some income as well. While one might think that losing her job would be the worst thing someone in Aibileen's position could face, she begins to see her new "independence" as a time when she can discover who she is, do some writing and see what she can make of her life. She feels that it may not be too late to start over again, regardless of her age.