Dear God, Violet! Your story and (all too many) others like it all around me make me glad that I never married. To me marriage feels and always felt like such an unnatural thing (‘a deed against nature' I called it to piss off those who pestered me about it). Luckily for me, my defences are so honed that the minute I sense that the other doesn’t love me back, any feeling of affection or even love already growing inside me simply vanishes into thin air. Involuntarily, effortlessly, just like that.
I’m so sorry that you had to go through all of this. The unfairness of it is thoroughly unnerving to me.