My Best Friend Gave Me His Apartment Key To Control Me

He always needed me to rescue him when I was out with my boyfriend.

Last updated on Aug 09, 2023

woman with a frightened expression as man hands out key to apartment Antonio_Diaz via Canva | Terroa via Canva | Kindel Media via Canva 

When my best friend gave me the key to his apartment, I was elated. He made me feel special by giving me free rein to access his home whenever I wanted.

He gave me the key because he often locked himself out of his apartment, and he trusted me to keep his key safe, to be responsible with his belongings, and to rescue him whenever he got locked out.

What I didn’t realize at the time was that he was giving me the key as a way to control me.


With that key, I felt trapped because my best friend wanted me to be available whenever he needed me and wouldn’t allow me to do things with other friends or family members unless he said it was okay.

I couldn’t travel too far from home because he might get locked out and I wouldn’t be accessible to deliver his spare key.


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This arrangement made me feel as though my life revolved around him and not my own desires.

He controlled when I could come and go, which made it difficult for me to establish any sense of independence from him or explore other options beyond our friendship.

If he knew I was out with my boyfriend, he’d be sure to call me in the guise of locking himself out of his apartment so I’d have to cut my plans short and meet up with him.

RELATED: How To Avoid Forced Friendships And Let Things Develop Naturally

It was strange how he only needed my help when I was spending time with someone else.


According to Very Well Family, interfering in my relationships with my boyfriend or other friends is one of the six signs of a controlling friend.

The following describes my former best friend perfectly: "Controlling people often attempt to control who your other friends are. They may also want complete control over who you spend time with…"

RELATED: 5 Signs A Toxic Friend Is Slowly-But-Surely Killing Your Otherwise Healthy Relationship

Of course, now that some time has passed, I can look back on this experience with clear eyes and see how wrong it was for someone, even a close friend, to try and control my life in such an invasive way.

It has also allowed me to recognize that true friendships are built on mutual trust, respect, and encouragement despite our differences — Not trying to manipulate each other into submission.


Though it’s been years since this happened, this experience taught me valuable lessons about relationships that still remain relevant today: Never let anyone pressure you into doing something that feels uncomfortable; stand up for yourself; remember your worth; and lastly, don’t let anyone try to take away your freedom — not even in the guise of friendship.

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Tracey Folly is a writer who has been contributing lifestyle and relationship content to the Internet since 2009.