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At some point, certain people just aren't worth helping anymore.

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I need to get this off my chest.

I have a friend, let's call him Bert. I've known him since middle school, so I guess for about 10 years now. He hasn't always been a good friend, but he's still a friend. A lot of the experiences I've had that have shaped me into the man I am today I've had with him. It's fair to say that a lot of the friends I have today I only met because of him. I would almost consider him a brother.

Bert is a fuck up. He is constantly making bad decisions. Myself and all of his other friends constantly tell him that these decisions are bad. He doesn't care. He thinks he knows what he's doing, so fuck what ever anyone else says.

His father is borderline psychotic. He always flips out at every little thing, and literally goes out of his way to be upset. He has kicked Burt out of the house on at least two separate occasions, only to invite him back with promises that things will be different. Bert always comes back. We all tell him that it's just going to be the same as always, but he doesn't listen. We all try to avoid going to Burt's house, simply because his father loves to start screaming and yelling at Bert about all the ways he's fucking up his life. Most of what he says to him is true, by the way. It's the fact that he seems to wait for one of us to be present before laying into him like that which we don't like.

A few years ago, Bert got laid off from his job as a salesman for a certain cellphone company. He was unemployed for about a year, and spent about six months living on a friend's sofa (because his dad had kicked him out), throwing a couple hundred bucks from what he had saved up their way to help cover rent and expenses. Eventually his father had invited him back, even offering to buy him a car. He took the offer, even though we all advised against it. After a few months of everything being fine, it eventually went back to the same shit as always.

He eventually got a job with another phone company. He kept saying that once he had saved up enough money, he was going to move out. Mind you, at this point, he didn't even have a cellphone any more, because he had blown through his savings, and could afford the monthly plan. No one liked calling his house because we didn't like having to deal with his father.

He never saved a cent. Instead, he spent most of the money on stupid shit. He would buy anime DVDs, an Xbox 360. All stupid things. The money that he promised us would go towards reactivating his cellphone? It instead went toward a 42" flat panel television. He said that all of this was so that when he moved out, he would have all of these nice things to put in his new bedroom. Even after he had it, he still never saved up enough money to get out of his parents' house.

About six months ago, he got let go from that job, but luckily he was able to find another job right before it happened. He was content for a few weeks, then said he was going to quit because his boss was an asshole. We told him not to, because in all honesty, we was lucky to get that job. He only barely graduated high school, and had no college education, or any real work experience besides working retail. He wouldn't hear it. He kept saying how his brother-in-law was going to hook him up with a job where he worked. So he quit the job, and then started working with his brother-in-law. About a month later, he was laid off from that job. He's been unemployed for about two or three months now, and has only recently found a new job doing, you guessed it, working retail at another phone company.

A few weeks ago, he almost got kicked out again because his dad thought he had stolen money from him. Eventually his father gave him the benefit of the doubt and let him move back in. His parents have gone out of the country to visit relatives. They're going to be gone for 2 weeks. Because his older sister had completely exaggerated a small get-together he had the last time they left him the house for a week, (It was only a dozen or so people, and we spent most of the time outside in the backyard. The way she put it though, it was some crazy party with hundreds of people taking turns having sex on his parents bed.) they didn't want him staying at the house alone, so they told him to go stay at his other sister's place with his family.

Bert decided not to listen. He's been staying at his house, trying to show that he can be trusted, saying that he's going to mow the lawn and wash both of his parents' cars before they get back. I know Bert. He's not going to do either of those things. He's going to keep putting them off until it's too late. But let's say he does manage to get it all done. His father isn't going to care, because Bert didn't do what he told him to. I told this to Bert. He said he knows that's true. He knows his father is going to flip. He wants it to happen so he can point out to him how ridiculous he's being, even though he knows that'll just piss him off more.

I told him that he's being an idiot, that he JUST got through a having a huge argument with his dad, that he was just poking the lion. He told me that I didn't understand. That growing up with parents like his, he has to do these things. He has to push their buttons just to see how far he can go, how much he can get away with. Otherwise he would have spent his youth being one of those kids who never left their house and never did anything because they were afraid of what their parents would do to them.

I was one of those kids. I never snuck out, I never did anything illegal. I didn't have a single drop of alcohol until I turned 17, and only because at that point, my dad said he didn't mind me having a beer or two, so long as I was being safe and not doing anything stupid. As a result, as soon as I graduated high school, I pretty much had free-reign to do whatever I wanted. I had this freedom because my parents trust me to be a mature, responsible adult with enough common sense to know when something is a bad idea.

I'm 22 and I still live at home with my parents. Because of the recession and various other circumstances, I haven't been able to find full time work, and have been stuck with the same part-time job for about a year now. If I want to go out at 1am, and not come home until 4am, my parents don't mind. If I'm ever short on money, so long as I don't ask for too much, and it's not for something that they think is unnecessary, like a video game or something, I can always just ask my parents for cash. They'll grumble about the fact that they shouldn't need to give me money, and that I should find a better job, but they'll still give me the money.

On the other hand, Bert, who's now 24, has to be home every night by 11pm, or risk being locked out because his father took away his house key. He's not allowed to have anyone over after 10:30pm. Whenever something goes missing, he's always suspect number one. He drives around in a car that was on it's last legs three years ago, and which he can barely afford to put gas in. These conditions are all a result of his own actions. I've tried multiple times to help him out, but he never listens. At this point, I honestly don't even care what happens to him. Whatever it is, he'll have brought it on himself.

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Comments

  1. Nour386's Avatar
    ...wow
  2. eat's Avatar
  3. Space Opera's Avatar
    ^the exact image I was thinking of while reading this
  4. Synthesis's Avatar
    Oh when will Bert learn!

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