Day One

My parents arrived. My dad thinks I should find an old minister with health problems and marry him so that I can take care of him, so I can be “of use.”

I cried on the phone to the Professor after dinner.

Then I went to bed.

I was trying to explain to the Professor that one of the most insidious, but unexamined religious beliefs in my Protestant family is that happiness is evil, that life is hard and we all should be suffering in order to alleviate the suffering of others, but if that suffering alleviation ever crosses over into happiness, that’s a sign of evil.

I also think she’s right that a lot of people want to drag you into their misery so that you will both confirm for them that the misery they’ve chosen is the right thing (hence the pressure to get married from people in miserable marriages, etc.) and provide them a buffer between them and their misery.

But all that means is that there’s just this enormous gulf between me and my parents because my happiness is scary to them.

But being happy–at least more happy than sad–is the only way I’m going to survive this life.