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    Thank you for your kind responses.

    You’re right about my husband- he conformed to everything he thought I wanted him to be. Going out of his way to be helpful and kind to others, and pretending to be a thoughtful hard worker, and to like the same media I like. He seemed like a perfectly wonderful person up until the point I married him. That was when he started to ignore my existence completely, behave coldly and meanly. He stopped trying to help others and became lazy too, always whining about money and jobs. He started to show these unexplainable facial expressions that were just… terrifying. It was a total 180 and took me totally by surprise.

    My parents aren’t super traditionalist, but they’re not super progressive either. They’ve always fallen in the middle, and been surprisingly open minded in some areas, and completely un-open minded in others. Its anyones guess where they’ll fall on any given topic. But with my moms stern pick yourself up by your bootstraps and keep going attitude, I expected a cold response from her. My dad has always been the softer, sensitive one of the pair. He can never quite speak up for himself and usually submits to whatever my moms opinion is. But mom cares a great deal for women’s rights and women’s issues, so I thought she would genuinely understand where I was coming from with this. I was pretty surprised to find that I was wrong. It turns out her idea of marriage is to endure anything and everything no matter what- because that’s the agreement you made when you got married. So she said even if he was hitting me, that’s just what men do when they’re angry, and I need to accept it. Obviously I can’t accept that. My dad meanwhile completely and utterly didn’t believe me and was just angry at the idea of me getting a divorce at 24. I’m almost certain they flaunted me as the most successful kid in moms family because I was the only cousin who was married, with a house and a job. But COVID killed the job, and the marriage wasn’t what they thought it was. I wish they would see that I would be better without the “expected” successes. For me, happiness is the greatest form of success. No matter what situation youre in, if you can be happy, you’ve done it- as long as it doesn’t hurt others. So in my book, I would be way more successful without the dang marriage.

    Thank you so much for your kind words. I need to try and put this behind me and move forward; I sound so silly coming to this end of the world conclusion. If I would want others to be happy I should see myself in that same way. I’m so grateful for the advice from each of you. I keep telling myself so many horrible thoughts, but it’s such a foolish move on my part. You make me feel more valid, more confident, and more able to move forward with this.

    My current plan is to get a better job so I can ask him to move out of the house, then I can pay for the divorce myself and move forward from there. It’s gonna take a lot of time but its about the only thing I think I can do in the spot I’ve put myself in.

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