Just read Kafka's Metamorphosis and am way overidentifying with the main protaganist. Not good. He worked hard all his life at a job he despised, thinking that he was doing something he had to do for his family. So he hated his life, but felt a perverse pride in it anyway. He didn't exist outside of work and home, but had no strong attachments with anyone at either place. He felt trapped in his existence. And it was all a lie. He wasn't helping his family with all his hard work, he was creating a dependency in them and stunting their potential to be full human beings with lives. He had them trapped. And he could have changed things at any time. It took a catastrophe to himself, something that happened to him, not anything he actively chose, to "free" himself unto death and make it possible for his family to find some happiness in being able to make their own choices.
Freedom and choice, being trapped in a mindset rather than a cell, working hard for the wrong reasons and not working hard at doing the right things. Isn't that what so many of us are afraid we're doing? Work ourselves from cradle to grave because we "have" to, for our families, for ourselves, for the chance of a decent life; all the while life is happening around you and you don't have the time or energy to pay it any mind. Sounds stupid, right? But then what's the alternative? Gregor's family may be better off with him gone, but Gregor himself is dead. To create their independent lives, he had to die. So maybe he was trapped after all. Regardless of whether he turned into a bug or just stopped supporting the family, they would probably have renounced him and given him no support. In fact, they maybe would have been less inclined to have anything to do with him at all if he had just quit as a human. Probably would have thrown him out unless he went back to work; certainly wouldn't have supported him while he tried to have a new life. So he may not have been trapped in that exact situation, but he was trapped.
The sad thing about him is, if positions were reversed, and his family had died and left him alive, he would probably still have ended up the same. He would have just transfered his "needs" and "responsibilities" onto himself or his own debt or his possible future hardships if he didn't have enough money squired away, onto some other focus, and then kept on working unhappily until he died. Poor, deluded fool.
Aren't we all.