Ego v/s Self Respect: Treading the Thin Line

See, here’s the thing.

I want to call him. Desperately.

Why? To seek an explanation. Or will it be ‘closure’, by the end of the conversation? I don’t know. The thing is, it’s that simple.

But it really isn’t. Because there is something holding me back. Or I would be on the phone right now instead of in the middle of writing this.

I know what he’ll call it. Ego. Like it’s a dirty word. Although, my psychology textbook says the ‘Ego’ is the part of the mind responsible for a sense of personal identity. That’s a good thing, right? But he’ll use it to defend his actions, blaming my high-handed sense of self for causing the rift.

I know what I want to call it, this feeling that’s stopping me from texting or calling him after he has made the same mistake yet again.

How about ‘self-respect’? Apparently, it’s defined as a behaviour meant to uphold one’s honour and dignity. That sounds better, don’t you think? More noble. It sure helps further strengthen my resolve to not call.

Of course, both our choices of words make the other person seem at fault.


“Your ego’s getting in the way of us making up!”

“I won’t call this time! I have some self-respect, you know!”


Cut to the both of us giving our phones a deathstare, waiting for the other to blow it up with apology messages. Or a phone call that begins with a subdued ‘Hey’, reeking of a feeble attempt to forget it all and start afresh.

It’s not impossible. It has happened on several occasions before. And a part of me, albeit a tiny one, still clings on to that hope.

Something tells me it’s different this time. He doesn’t call. Or text.

I want to give into my urges. Find a pretence for conversation.


“Had such a great time tonight!”


“Sorry, wrong window.”


But somewhere, hidden underneath all the frustration, fear, and ‘forgive/forget’ tosh, the Ego/Self Respect kicks in.

Right on cue, in fact. Because it’s that time of the night.



But my Ego/Self Respect keeps me steady, keeps me strong.

If I make it through the night, tomorrow will be different.

And it is.

They’ll tell you it was your ego that destroyed what could have been good.

But if what is, right now in this very moment, the aftermath of that fateful night, is happier than what could have been, then it was a bloody good choice.

See, here’s the thing.

Ego hurts. But self-respect heals.

– ❤ –





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