Looking After Numero Uno

“Sometimes you have to look out for numero uno,” my friend said on a quiet night outside our college library. He was giving his response to my question of why he didn’t want to study with our classmate Roger. At the time I thought it was bit harsh but I understood those words after some thought and accepted them as words to live by.

My living situation at the moment involves one place of residence with lots of space and only 2 people living there. One of those people is me, and another a “friend” I allowed to live with me. If you think the wording of that last sentence sounds strange, it was made to enunciate the fact that I’m ALLOWING her to stay with me. I work, and pay the bills all by myself while she shamlessly benefits off of it.

This woman is not my girlfriend or lover (nor was there any expectation she would ever be), and I simply helped her out of the goodness of my heart. But like all acts of kindness, you give a hand and lose an arm. “You won’t even know I’m here” is the furthest from the stance she’s taken in my home. Instead her current life purpose is to make my life miserable from a seeming lack of understanding of how common courtesy should work.

She dirties but doesn’t clean, she hears but doesn’t listen, and she takes up space but gives almost nothing in return. And its been almost 3 months. She has no self-awareness of how her household actions (and lack thereof) might affect me, and takes pseudo-ownership of MY possesions. She sees MY space as OUR space and doesn’t see anything wrong with the length of time she’s stayed at my place.

Throughout my life I’ve allowed things like this to happen, with all of these situations stemming from my lack of ability to set boundaries. My inherent altruism is breeding ground for a guilty conscience, but it seems a guilty conscience would be preferrable to a state of mind constantly in a state of anger. I’ve now lived to about a quarter of my life and have to start making decisions that keep me happy and put me in a good mindset. I will no longer allow those around me to squander my happiness for their own gain.

From this realization I will start doing everything in my power to get my current roommate out of my living space from now on. I know for a fact that if I had a friend go through the same situation as I am, I would be overzealously giving advice to kick that roommate out so why not give myself the same amount of respect that I do my friends? If that means losing some of my friends, then I’ll accept that too. What’s the use of having friends who treat you worse than you’d treat them?