Un/Conditional Compromises

When the line between personal assistant and lover blur, the results can be painful.

He drove erratically, with his right hand holding his one-hitter and his left hand on the steering wheel. His eyes were bloodshot. He’d steady the wheel with his knees from time to time so he could tie his hair back into a frazzled ponytail and rub his eyes or grab his pill bottle and knock a few of them back. Jake was my nightmare. He was also my boyfriend who was prescribed everything under the sun by a psychiatrist he saw once in a blue moon. And Jake was also my personal care attendant, a person I had chosen to take care of my every need as a woman who didn’t have the physical power to move.

Jake put my clothes on in the morning and he also took them off at night to have sex with me. Jake showered me in the mornings and he also once forgot that I was in the shower because he passed out at the kitchen table from too many pills. I screamed for hours until he woke up, stumbled into the bathroom, and apologized with an excuse. Always an excuse. Thirty minutes later, I was dressed and at work explaining my