Last year, Russ and Paola Mayfield admitted that lockdown put a strain on their marriage. They were not alone.
Still, the longtime 90 Day Fiance couple — who appeared on the hit franchise’s very first season — seemed to pull through.
Lately, however, Pao has not been posting photos of herself with Russ, and fans of course wondered why.
They now have their answer, thanks to Paola.
On Wednesday, August 11, Paola Mayfield took to Twitter to share some news.
"People asked me why I don’t take pictures with my husband," she acknowledged.
"And my answer is… I just don’t like to pretend," Pao wrote.
She followed that with a shrugging emoji.
Knowing that people would speculate, she made it clear that the simplest explanation was right.
Paola tagged her tweet: "#youareguessingright"
Paola seems to have not wanted anyone to miss what she was saying.
She crossposted her tweet (in light mode, even) to her Instagram page where others could see it.
When a follower challenged her, Paola replied: "I don’t have a king."
In a previous (but still very recent) tweet earlier that day, Paola spoke about why marriages crumble.
"Part of the reason why relationships end is that we get caught up in other things, forget to appreciate one another," she wrote.
"And sadly," Paola lamented, "marriage isn’t a priority anymore."
While the end of any relationship or marriage is inevitable, through death or breakup, this is actually a surprise.
Paola and Russ first appeared on 90 Day Fiance on the show’s very first season, before it was a massive success.
We’re talking about a show that’s currently filming or preparing to film it’s ninth season. That’s a lengthy relationship.
Russ and Pao married, and though they had plenty of issues, they didn’t do the constant breakups and reconciliations like some other couples.
At least, if they did, it was never as public as the mess with Paul Staehle and Karine Martins or with Ashley Martson and Jay Smith.
Paola and Russ were always seen as working through their issues for themselves, their marriage, and for their son, little Axel Mayfield.
That is not to say that they did not have serious relationship issues.
Russ was seen as controlling, especially when he raised objections to Pao’s modeling work.
Paola was seen as rude to Russ’ family, and (by some viewers) as selfish for wanting to live in Miami instead of Oklahoma.
After Axel’s birth, Paola also displayed an alarmingly controlling side.
Plenty of new parents want to hold their babies.
That is healthy and normal, especially for a rainbow baby (the first baby after a miscarriage) like Axel.
But Paola was seen not allowing Russ or his mother to hold her son.
That was unhealthy, and fans feared that her obvious postpartum issues could end their marriage.
Russ and Pao have actually not returned to Happily Ever After? since that joyous yet difficult time in their lives.
Unfortunately, Paola on social media alienated even more 90 Day Fiance fans by expressing unhinged views of the world.
Wild conspiracy theories, buying into and promoting anti-vaxx nonsense, and some related and upsetting political posts were a huge turnoff to fans.
Many fans hoped that Pao would snap out of this and face reality. Others stopped being fans of hers altogether.
Still, we don’t know exactly what ended Paola and Russ’ marriage, though they did share that lockdown last year was a strain on their relationship.
From the hints that she’s dropping, it sounds like it may have been a death of a thousand cuts.
Since she appears to be in the mood to share, perhaps we’ll learn more from the Mayfields in the near future.