A Most Unhealthy Relationship

James Rozoff
2 min readFeb 11, 2024
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I once had a friend I was eager to please. To make him happy I would do anything he wanted to do. To stay on his good side, I would assume any attitude he wanted me to assume. I took him with me everywhere I went.

For his sake, I would say cruel things to others. For his sake I would be cold to people in need of kindness. He would end up getting me in fights. Literal, physical fights. On his account I would end up being hated by people I was once close to.

He took a good time and he inevitably turned it ugly. He never allowed me to be happy. To please him was my only role.

One day the burden of his company became too big. I had to let him go, had to let him stop controlling my life. Having made the decision to let him go, it felt like a weight was lifted from my shoulders. My steps became light and effortless. I was no longer at war with the world.

The name of the person I believed to be my friend was Ego. For him I once would make an acquaintance an enemy. I was so concerned with making things right with Ego that the only kind of pleasure I could experience was whatever victories Ego could achieve. It was always about his satisfaction and never about mine. Looking back on those times, I think about how much good time that I wasted letting him be in charge.

I still run into Ego occasionally. Sometimes he’ll pop up out of nowhere when I least expect it. I guess I’ll never be completely free of him. But at least I recognize him for what he is now. I understand just what an unhealthy relationship we have. Perhaps he will trigger me from time to time, but I will do my best to never again let Ego control me. That guy was a dick.