My ex was a lot of things, but honest sure wasn’t one of ’em. Months into our relationship, he professed his love to me and admittedly, I was overjoyed. When his living situation fell apart shortly thereafter, I was all too happy to take him in. As it turns out, having a free place to stay was what he really loved.
I wanted to believe he loved me so I ignored the glaring red flags. Looking back, there were just so many obvious clues that I overlooked simply because I was desperate to believe that he was in love with me. After all, I was in love with him, or so I thought. Still, there was a part of me that knew deep down that it wasn’t real and was scared of doing things to push him away. Because of this, I found myself regularly putting up with a lot of crap from him and agreeing to do things I didn’t really want to do (like letting him move in with me).
I never stopped to question why he didn’t have anywhere else to live. He didn’t have a place of his own because his old lease ran out and he couldn’t find anyone else to move in with. But instead of questioning why he just let his lease run out without doing anything about it or why exactly nobody else wanted to live with him in the first place, I just let him move in with me until he found something. Talk about looking through rose-colored glasses, right?
I’d never lived with a boyfriend before and this wasn’t the best introduction. Because I didn’t know what I should expect when it came to cohabitation, the bar was already set pretty low. I lived in a pretty nice house for the area, so I felt like I was just being hospitable by sharing it with him. Plus, I thought I loved the guy, so I had no issues doing basically anything for him. I didn’t ask for anything in return and I didn’t get anything.
I didn’t even charge him rent. I brought it up on multiple occasions, but each time he managed to talk me out of it with different lame excuses. He was actively looking for housing but didn’t have much luck, he’d tell me. Ever since he totaled his car, he had unfair money troubles, he’d point out. Because I had roommates at the time and a moral compass, I went ahead and covered the bulk of the utilities during the time he was living with us. My wallet hurt more from the principle of it than from anything else, but it sucked all the same.
He’d only tell me he loved me when he was drunk or when I mentioned him moving out. I’ve since realized that he only ever really expressed love for me after he’d been drinking. Any expressions of affection at all came across as stiff and forced when he was sober, and a lot of times he wouldn’t even respond when I started talking about my feelings for him. Of course, the moment our living situation came up, he was suddenly the nicest, most caring boyfriend ever. Coincidence? I think not.
Living with him was no picnic. Bluntly put, the guy was just really immature. He rarely cleaned up his own messes, especially when it came to the kitchen, which definitely drove my roommates crazy. He didn’t even shut the refrigerator door or the kitchen cabinets after he opened them to look for things. Worst of all, for some inexplicable reason, he also didn’t practice personal hygiene like every adult should, which made having to share a bed with him every evening a nightmare.
I started finding excuses not to be at home with him. I remember driving home from work and just sitting in the driveway for a while, treasuring each minute as another peaceful one I could enjoy all to myself. I did this more than I care to admit because I really just didn’t enjoy being in my own house anymore when he was there. Besides, every time I walked in the door, my boyfriend would only come up to me to see if I’d picked up any snacks from the store. It was worse than living with a dog because at least dogs can love you back.
I was happy when he eventually moved out. The day finally came when he moved out—my house was “too crowded” for him, apparently—and I have to say that I felt nothing but. I helped him move into his new place but he didn’t even thank me. He grew colder as time went on, and just a few months later he told me he wanted a break. Even after we broke up, he would occasionally start being really sweet to me if he needed a favor. Fortunately, I knew better by then.
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