So I (41F) have been an actress my entire life. I went to a performing arts high school, and graduated from a theatre program from my college. At age 22 I started dating my husband. By age 25 I was a married mom. We have a 16 year old daughter, 13 year old son and 11 year old daughter.
My husband started his career as an auditor. Meanwhile I felt like I was expected by him to be a supporting character in the story of his life. I had to conform to his frame of mind, and prop up his vision for how life should be.
This has included me having to accommodate his long working hours. Me unable to book last minute auditions because his clients would flip if he walked out during meetings to take our kids to the doctor’s or pick them up from school.
I spent my 20s and early 30s trying to pursue acting, but when I landed a part in a commercial or a small speaking role, I could not take the job because my husband said we could not afford a nanny that would allow me to just go off to Atlanta or New York for a few weeks at a time, on short notice.
Eventually all my $400 headshots were just collecting dust. And people kept saying that they wished they had a six figure earning husband who was climbing the ladder. I am now 41. My oldest daughter is in acting classes and she’s good. But everybody from her acting school raves about how I look like Margot Robbie.
And driving my daughter to auditions and managing her social media made me realize how much I missed acting. I realized that despite what my husband thinks, this was more than a hobby.
My husband was transferred from LA to San Francisco 2 years ago. The kids like SF but I hate it. The kids are growing up, and my husband is a good dad but I feel like his work in maintaining the household is just cooking meals occasionally.
He just adds a lot to the workload. In addition, now he also does not want our daughter to pursue acting professionally. I felt my kids would be proud to see me pursue my dreams, and it might encourage my daughter to pursue being an actress too.
My husband and I went to one failed counseling session that didn’t address the resentment. I ended up subletting a 2 bedroom apartment on the funds from my credit card and filed for divorce.
My husband refused to let me take the two younger kids with me, but my older daughter insisted on going with me to LA and my husband tearfully relented. I thought I was doing the right thing but my two younger kids came to visit and are very distant. They refuse to live with me full time.
I have now been going to auditions and networking and even though it’s been only a few months I feel like I’ve been set free. But people are asking me to reconsider this divorce.
I want to move forward with it, but I am upset my kids are upset and that I feel like there is this pressure on me to book a job or it will all be for nothing. But even if I don’t book jobs, I am doing what I love to do and I get to support my daughter to act in the way I was never supported. AITA?