I apologize to those of you who already know all of this, and have had to put up with my ranting for the past few months. This post is mostly for the benefit of those who may be wondering how my current situation truly came to pass.
When I invited (he_dreams_awake), (allegradestina) and (orak_tor) to come live with me at the end of last November, they promised that they'd contribute to the bills and rent, and generally be considerate, resonsible roommates. HDA's brother (macabredivinity) had thanked me over IM for taking them in, but also warned me at the time that HDA was bipolar and occassionally behaved irrationally. But as I'd had bipolar friends before, I wasn't too worried, even after the display of temper he'd engaged in only months before (that summer) over a relatively minor internets flamewar. I felt bad for my part in said flamewar, and welcomed what I'd seen at the time as a chance to make amends.
Things were okay for the first few days. HDA and AD said that they'd take care of December's rent, because I'd been kind enough to send them the money to leave Washington State and invite them into my home. the Social Security office apparently owed AD several back-payments, which was where the money they promised would go towards the rent was supposed to be coming from. But shortly after he moved in, HDA congenial facade started to slip. He told me that since this was his home now, he expected to call the shots, and told me exactly what I could do with myself if I didn't like it. AD backed him up completely on the basis that they were "guests" and as "guests" I was supposed to defer to them in all things (which now that I look back on it, actually negated HDA's statement that "they could do whatever they wanted" because "this was their home now.")
OT spent most of his time moping in a corner wrapped in a blanket.
They pressured me to quit the job I'd had at the time, saying that my place of employment was "turning me into a metacortex drone" and that I should "find something I liked better." It wasn't their fault that a scheduling snafu with my former workplace (which I'd planned to return to) and final exams kept me from getting my old job back. But had I known that they were, in fact *NOT* going to pay December's rent, and that AD wouldn't see about getting her back payments for months (it really helps if you tell the Social Security office that you moved) I would never had attempted to change jobs at all.
However, HDA's claims that I "was really enthusiastic about changing jobs and going freelance" are bogus, because AD herself told me that "I was quitting" and went along with me to my job to to "help clean out my cubicle, and to make sure I didn't lose my nerve" the night that I told them that I didn't really want to quit my job after all. That month, I had to sell just about everything of value that I owned just to make rent. HDA threw a fit over that, too, saying that if I did so, I'd better not blame him for it. Well, I DO. By the time I found stable employment again (after a few temporary jobs, none of which lasted longer than a few days) things were already too far-gone, and we were already in the process of being evicted.
They ran all of the lights and the computer and the air conditioner at all times, even though I told them that electricity was expensive. HDA offered to pay the electric bill once (see below) but after that became hostile every time I told him to turn off lights or appliances when he wasn't using them, or to turn down the AC because it was too expensive to run all of the time. Quite often, he would run the fans, the AC at full blast, AND open all of the windows. When I would confront him about this, he would tell me that this was his home now (even though I was still paying most of the rent and bills) and he would do as he pleased. Or, he would turn them down, close the windows, and then turn everything back on and open the windows again when I went out to work/look for work.
As a result, my electric bill skyrocketed for each month that they lived with me. Before they moved in, it had been manageable - only about eighty dollars a month on average (this was WITH my former roommate Jessica, (blx_wydo) who regularly hosted all-day DVD Disneythons for her two-year-old daughter Tori, and with me running the computer when I was home.) After they moved in, the electricity was never less than $120.00 per month and was often a lot more than that.
As for his "contributions," HDA worked on one two-week project on rent-a-coder in the entire time he lived with me, and the two-hundred dollar paycheck he recieved only paid the electric bill for December (which was enormous) and one emergency vet bill (for his rat) for one month. After that, every single time I asked him if he was going to contribute as he said he was going to, he proclaimed, "I PAID the electric bill! What more do you want?" That was fine for December, but what about the months after that? And what about the contribution towards the rent that he'd promised me?
AD gave me 200.00 a month after her disability checks started coming in, but then HDA would turn around and demand money for his cigarettes, his painkillers, or whatever project "for the mission" that he happened to be working on at the time. All told, what he took *always* exceeded AD's contributions...and she was the only one contributing, because neither OT nor HDA would work, aside from the aforementioned two-week rent-a-coder project that HDA had undertaken in December. when I confronted him about this, HDA would exclaim that "AD's contributions should have covered everything" and that I was to shut the hell up because "it really wasn't my business anyway."
He didn't want me working, but at the same time, he wanted me to support him so he didn't have to disturb his fantasy with something as mundane as work. How else was I supposed to come up with the money for this?
I also ended up having to pay out of pocket (with no job!) for all of his healthcare needs. I'd offered to take him to the social services office to apply for medicaid a day after they got there. He refused, saying he "didn't want to spend all day in some goverment office."
When I set up an appointment for him, he threw a tantrum, accused me of trying to "manipulate" him, and refused to go. As a result, most of my college disbursement, which was supposed to have gone to books and school expenditures, went to his drugs instead. And when someone is as hooked on painkillers as he is, that is a very expensive prospect.
He insisted on 24/7 Matrix LARP (he calls it "bi-locating") and would SCREAM in rage that I would DARE discuss "the mundane" whenever I brought up the fact that we were broke, hungry, and likely to be evicted unless I found work. I know plenty of people who have what could be called "unconventional" views on the nature of reality who manage to hold down regular jobs and live functional lives. HDA didn't feel like he should have to do anything to support himself. It's that simple. He didn't want me working, yet at the same time he complained about the lack of food/quality of food when we went hungry, or only had ramen or sandwiches to eat. If he didn't like what we had on what we could afford, why didn't he at least get a try to job?
OT did not contribute anything, and generally sat in a corner, wrapped in a blanket, moping. He eventually got a job, but then took his first paycheck and hopped on the first bus back home to his mother in San Diego. I'm upset that he never contributed anything at all to bills or rent, but I can't really say that I blame him.
When I tried to challenge them on any of this, HDA accused me of "being obsessed with money" "being a workaholic" and "always spazzing about money." Well, DUH! When one is living month-to-month, with no steady source of income, with an admittedly stern landlady who wanted them out anyway, and having never gotten the money that they'd promised me when they'd moved in, and having to take care of all of his medication and healthcare needs to boot, how did they expect me to react?
HDA was also inconsiderate of my things, appropriating them whenever the mood struck him, claiming that they were "gifts" when I demanded my stuff back, and breaking them whenever one of his "manic moments" overtook him. While he was living with me, he managed to break the bathroom door and one or more mirrors, just because he was having a fit.
They would never let me vacuum, because the noise "upset HDA too much." I tried to clean, and AD would ocassionally go on cleaning binges herself. But HDA never cleaned anything, and threw food/soda cans/cigarettes butts/and cigarette ash on the floor. As a result, the place was throughly trashed anyway by the time we left. And who got stuck with a $600.00 bill from the landlady? ME.
It soon dawned on me that certain accusations that his family had made during the dispute that had caused him to leave his home in Maine in the first place were true. HDA exists in a fantasy world of his own making, and he demands that everyone and everything around him conform to support that fantasy world, or else. The friendly persona he projects in his livejournal is an aspect of this fantasy...himself as he'd like other people to see him. It is NOT the "real him." Those of us who have known him off the Internets can attest to this, which I guess is the reason why most of his long-term friends are all on the Internets.
Everything came to a head the day that our cellphones got turned off. After they moved in, they got a cellphone on my plan, which they promised they would pay for. After a few months of them not paying their half of it, both of our phones got turned off.
When I confronted HDA about this, he threatened me with a knife. I was sick of his shit, so I went to the landlady. She called the police and evicted them. Because I wouldn't get my paycheck from my new job in time to make rent, I had to leave, too. HDA demanded I "take her to court" because she "had no right to evict us," which was bullshit. They were never on the lease, and I couldn't make rent. It was that simple.
But it doesn't end there. I allowed AD to use my bank card to call her mom, thinking that they'd be able to get help from either one of their families to go back home. BIG MISTAKE. AD swears up and down that she "only used it a few times, to call home" and that they were not the ones who made five or six long-distance calls to CANADA, running up a bill that left me several hundred dollars in the hole with a negative balance at my bank. But if they didn't, who did?
HDA regularly mocks me for "being broke and living with my Mom." Well geez. The brokeness is because I am paying off my debts to the apartment so I can move out again, the university so I can go back to school, and the bank because I am still in the hole. The "living with Mom" thing is because WE FUCKING GOT EVICTED, YOU MORON. The way I look at it, I offered them my roof and my food, and they were inconsiderate, hostile, abusive, bullying.
The threat with the knife was the straw that broke the camel's back. Because I ended up having to move back into Dallas, I had to drop out of school, because there was no way I was going to be able to afford the drive from Dallas to Denton every day, even *with* the new job. Because of this, I owe the school $440.00. I didn't know this was going to be the case, or I would have tried to swing it somehow and finish out the semester anyway.
When my debts to the apartment complex, the university, and the bank are paid off, I'm moving out again. Preferably ALONE, in a studio apartment so that I never make the mistake of even trying to have a roommate ever again.
HDA might indeed have cancer. I'm truly sympathetic about that, because cancer is fucking scary. [EDIT: NOPE.] It's not my fault he has cancer (newsflash...smoking will do that) and it's not my fault that he doesn't have the care he needs. [UPDATE apparently the "cancer diagnosis" was another bullshit Munchausen Syndrome sympathy ploy. Of course.] He accuses me of "ruining his life" which I think is tantamount to someone willfully shooting themselves in the foot and then crying "you made me shoot myself in the foot!"
Yes, I made the mistakes that I made...but it is also true that everything he is going through now is a situation of his own making, just as my current situation is of my own making, and I am doing everything I can to fix it so that I can move out again. He could have chosen not to come down here.
Or, he could have gotten a job. He could have applied for social services. He could have *not* been a dick the entire time he was living with me. He could have chosen not to threaten me with a knife. Yes, I could have chosen not to go to the landlady about it, but then I didn't feel safe around him at the time.
Yes, I was mistaken in thinking that I could deal with them, given my own precarious financial situation when they moved in with me. And I should have known better to trust any of them in the first place, given their behavior last summer, and the fact that they'd already been evicted from one apartment all on their own. I could have chosen not to try to change jobs when I did, just because the lifestyle I was living was "too mundane" for their liking. I could have tried to stand up for myself, instead of allowing them to manipulate me and bully me just because there were three of them and one of me.
I could have chosen not to drop out of school. All of these are my mistakes. I make too many of them on my own to be responsible for HDA's as well.
I come from the school of thought wherin it is considered improper to threaten someone, treat them like shit, and then demand help. Which is what he has done, and continues to do, to this very day.
What this situation has done is make me examine my life, and re-evaluate what it is that I truly value, and what it is that I truly want to do with my life. In that, it was perhaps even a necessary occurence, as much as it sucks. Yes, activism and revolution are needed things, but when one isn't even willing to save themselves, how can they expect to save the world?
If one's foundation isn't stable, one is likely to cave in at the first sign of opposition. Likewise, if one isn't willing to even make the effort necessary to live and maintain one's life or preferred way of living, "fantasy world" or no, they can expect to lose it - one way or another, in either the long-term or short-term.
ETA: HDA and AD have reinvented themselves as drowning_jedi and darksidious. THEY'VE INVADED THE STAR WARS FANDOM. ARAAGGGGGG. Oh, and the "cancer" thing? TOTAL BULLSHIT.
I also talked to my former landlady since then. She told me that she was actually in a legal gray area as far as kicking them out, but that she did so because she knew something like the knife incident would eventually happen, and she was literally afraid they would kill me.
ETA, 2016: PUBLIC PUBLIC PUBLIC. It was ten years ago, and I don't care who knows now. All debts, to the school, the apartment, and my credit card were paid off as of the end of 2009. And none of this was ever a "Neo needs to stop being poor and disabled and pull himself up by his bootstraps!" argument, either; I actually would have been ecstatic if he'd taken the initiative to try and apply for social services before he sucked me dry. But why would he do so, when it's so much easier to bully what he wants out of people? Especially AD/Trinity: he always took most of her disability checks for whatever he wanted when she finally started receiving it again.
Drug addiction is a legit disability. Bipolar disorder is a legit disability. HDA did have some legit health issues beyond the addiction...but I have had another roommate, referred to as "Ghost" in my LJ, since 2011, who has all of these maladies to the point of being like a mirror-universe-HDA, right down to Talking To The Machine Beings Over The Astral Plane and addiction to The Matrix and everything Wachowski Starskip...and he has been a dream to live with for six years compared to HDA, because he doesn't feel like he's entitled to shake people down for whatever he wants. (His demeanor is more akin to The Dude than Neo, truth be told. Wouldn't that be an awesome idea for a crossover movie? The next anomaly? The One Abides. ATTN WACHOWSKI STARSHIP: THIS IS THE MATRIX SEQUEL THAT THE WORLD NEEDS RIGHT NOW.)
But at the heart of it, what "THE MESSAGE!!111" is really, really, really about is: Neo supposedly just wants to be accepted and valued as a human being and be able to survive without being forced to sell his labor. And having grudgingly played along with the system for as long as I have, I get that. I really do. It was what attracted me to his group in the first place.
But the thing about this system is, you don't win fights against it by exploiting, manipulating, threatening, and abusing the people who are trying to help you. You don't fight it by claiming to be someone that the majority of the world believes to be a fictional character - and then making the acceptance of that identity be the entry fee/purity test for your fellow revolutionaries, no matter what your or their view of fictionkin/soulbonding might be.
One thing I suggested to HDA that he threw a tantrum about, was that he should actually keep his identity as "Neo" secret, and have people figure it out themselves - or not. The fight against the exploitative system is what's really important, is it not? More important that any individual revolutionary, even Teh 0n3? Wasn't the final twist of Reloaded the idea that The Anomaly is a part of the system of control - and the only reason that the human rebels "won" in Revolutions is that Neo opposed Smith anyway (taking on a threat that the System was never equipped to handle) because he chose to? "I'm just another guy."
And fifteen years after the "pop culture" (HDA's term for the Matrix Trilogy) ended, I think that the original ending that most people interpreted from the original film was the best one: the Neo was going to go teach everyone to see code and become Anomalies. fuck it, we're all Anomalies. It isn't too late to take the "Redpill" association back from MRAs and White Nationalist Nazi scum. Everyone go be the best Anomaly you can be!