with a capital D

"... well, yeah I'd have to say there was a point when I was very very close to him. We were very very close. But you know what? It wasn't healthy, not at all. In fact ... I mean I still have scars. I mean I know it's a cliched word but I think it was the ultimate [crooks fingers] 'dysfunctional' relationship. With a capital 'D'."

"How? Well it was the standard thing. A spiral of dependence you could say. I didn't have much money and my job was shit. So I started asking him, just for little things at first, handouts for groceries, you know. Then it was utility bills credit card bills rent car payments ... And he delivered. A lotto ticket here, some money found on the pavement there. I was so grateful I'd. This is going to sound pathetic. I'd get down on my knees every night and you know thank him for it. And then I'd beg for more."

"But it went you know both ways. I guess nowadays you'd call it [crooks fingers] 'codependence'. He needed me as much as I needed him. If I didn't ask him for anything, if I was able to do something on my own, he'd create obstacles just so I'd have to come back to him. And if I didn't ... Well you know his anger is legendary, that guy really knows how to hold a grudge."

"Sometimes though I couldn't tell who was sicker--him or me. I mean he had a real split personality. I'm sure he got beat up by his dad when he was a kid or something ... Sometimes he was like this big paternal authority figure, and sometimes he was like this rebellious teenager. I could never tell which one I was talking to. Towards the end he even had some other wacko space cadet personality I could never figure out at all."

"He had really fucked up friends too, they really [crooks fingers] 'enabled' his whole weirdness. I don't know how he picked them up either ... he was just wandering around downtown one day, pointing at random people, and they just started following him around. There was some kind of weird master/slave thing there, maybe even weirder than his relationship with me. Since he left town, though, they've calmed down some ... seem to spend most of their time writing letters."

"How did we break up? Oh I dunno ... one day I woke up and I'd just had enough of being a spineless non-person. It was like, either start thinking for yourself, or become some kind of sheep. Looking back on it, I think he knew it was coming ... I hadn't heard from him for a few weeks at all, except for some money he sent through a tax refund. I didn't even hear from him when I told him I was breaking up with him, but of course the money stopped coming in."

"Since then I got a better job, as a secretary, so the money thing is straightened out. But I guess the most important thing is that I feel like I own myself, like I don't have to kowtow to some power-tripping maniac anymore. I even started hanging out with this other guy ... Going out? Are you kidding? I'm not ready for another [crooks fingers] 'relationship' with a capital R ... anyway, I'm not sure he's my type, he's a little fat for me ... and in some ways I wonder if he doesn't have a thousand personalities himself ... in fact, some days when I meet him at the bus stop I just wanna kill him. But, you know, he's okay as a friend and that's just fine by me."

© 1997-2001 Narciso Jaramillo first person | dyslexikon | nj's face