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Why Jim and Pam’s Marriage Was Always Headed for Divorce

By Kate Hudson | TV | April 2, 2020 |

By Kate Hudson | TV | April 2, 2020 |


I’ve been rewatching The Office lately, so I’ve been loving the amount of coverage Pajiba has been giving it because sometimes it’s nice to just revisit the old-standards, you know? Even though the show’s quality drops sharply in the last two seasons (Dustin is absolutely right, Andy is possibly the worst character on the show. Creed is obviously the best) it’s still the soothing balm my soul needs right now. However, this is something I want to bring up with you this evening, and some of you may not like what I have to say (even though I’ve covered this subject before) but I know in my heart that I’m right: Jim and Pam’s marriage was never going to be forever. I’ll tell you why. Jim is a controlling, selfish a*shole who has no problem putting himself first, always, and Pam eventually would have gotten tired of his “I’m going to do what I think is best for me, and you and the kids will just have to deal” schtick.

In case you haven’t picked up on this, I strongly dislike Jim. I also believe Pam became a real jag after she married him, which I blame him more for than her, as I feel like living with Jim Halpert 24/7 would turn anyone into a jag. Jim is the worst.

For instance, let’s go all the way back to season 2, when he threw a party and invited everyone in the office but Michael Scott. I don’t give a flying f*ck how much you don’t like being around someone, if you throw a party for your co-workers and invite everyone but one person, you’re a s*it, plain and simple. That action tells me that you’re someone who puts themselves first and doesn’t necessarily concern yourself with the feelings of others. Additionally, it tells me you’re a f*cking idiot, because why would you run the risk of pissing your boss off, and boning up the job that you rely on financially?

Also, remember that he stole Jan’s CD of her favorite song from her ex-assistant Hunter, from Jan’s own home?! That’s psycho! Who steals a prized possession from someone’s home? A selfish jerk, that’s who!

Then there’s his long-running, one-sided feud with Dwight that not-infrequently descended into violence, destruction, and general cruelty. Not to mention the sheer amount of time Jim would devote to setting these pranks up. How can you put the work into your relationship with your wife when you’re coming up with new and inventive ways to torture your co-worker, Dwight. Do you think that would have changed when he left Dunder Mifflin for his stupid sports marketing agency? Absolutely not, because as we saw in Season 3, he kept torturing Dwight even though he was in another state/branch of Dunder Mifflin.

Then let’s not forget all the stupid s*it he did without telling Pam, like buying his parents house, planning a backup wedding (despite the fact she presumably put in a lot of hard work on their destination wedding), pursuing a startup job, investing more money in said start-up, and that’s just what was shown on the show. Jim is consistently portrayed as someone who makes major decisions without consulting his wife. Jim is a s*it.

Now, Pam is culpable here, too—throughout all of this BS, she’s been there, egging him on, or not telling him to dial it back. She’s f*cking terrible at creating boundaries. You know what happened when Jim dated Karen? He cut out the bulls*it. Karen was great at boundaries! She also left his ass, and it resumed, so what does that tell you about his natural state?

I can’t imagine Pam would be onboard with Jim’s f*ckery, 10+ years on, when the kids are becoming teenagers and getting on her last nerve, that she would be OK with a husband who prioritizes his time putting himself first, and spending an inordinate amount of time on pranks, leaving her to parent. Pranks are f*cking exhausting, people! I’m not a fan!

Additionally, we see pranking is the Halpert way—remember when Pam met Jim’s brothers before she married him, and they thought it would be hilarious to belittle her choice of going to art school, in front of her and Jim!? The Halperts are dicks! Who’s to say that Jim wouldn’t turn some of his pranking attention on his own kids, as demonstrated how his brothers turned on Pam? That would drive me up the wall.

I believe Pam, eventually, would have gotten sick of Jim’s bulls*it and left his ass. The resentment was already there in season 9, even though they reconciled and left Scranton to move to Texas for the sports marketing agency at the end of the series. Surely it would have bubbled over at some point, when Jim was off doing whatever the f*ck he wanted to, and eventually, the kids were becoming more self-sufficient that she had enough time to start to think of what she wanted out of life, rather than the decisions Jim made for both of them, without telling her.

There’s simply no way they would still be together. Jim would have an age-inappropriate girlfriend, seeing his kids on the occasional weekend, but insisting that he got them for every major holiday because he believes taking them away from their mom at Christmas makes up for the fact he’s not there for the majority of the time, and he has a right to see his kids whenever he wants, dammit! Pam probably tried to do distance learning at art school for a bit, but eventually gave it up since it was too much work. She resents her ex for moving them to Texas, away from her family and most likely jumped at the opportunity to go back to Scranton once Jim decided it was imperative that the sports marketing company open up an LA office. He’ll see the kids even less, but he’ll go back to Scranton occasionally under the guise of being a father, but inevitably he’ll spend the majority of his time pranking Dwight.

That, friends, is why Jim and Pam’s marriage never could last.

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Kate is a staff contributor. You can follow her on Twitter.

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