Absolutely used it. I have fond memories of my first team in Yellow, and Pikachu had a big role in it (I totally bought into the fact that you could raise its friendship level, let’s ignore the fact that it’s probably maxed out by the time you reach Misty’s gym 😅).
Definitely tried to evolve it upon reaching Celadon City, too, but of course was greeted with the refusal message.
Only played Yellow once when it came out on VC and I didn't use Pikachu. I caught a male Nidoran asap and treated it as my starter for that playthrough. Kept Pikachu on my team until I got Bulbasaur and then boxed it forever since I knew it couldn't evolve.
Pinball: we've always played pokemon yellow with a bunch of glitches and one we sometimes do is use the ACE warp to leave pallet town without getting pikachu and go to celadon city to get eevee as a starter! but normally we keep the pikachu though we sometimes do the hybrid glitch to get a water type pikachu
I never used Pikachu in Pokémon Yellow. I always thought Pikachu was overrated and that I had better options, even then. However, I tried to show Pikachu more appreciation and recently got Pokémon Let’s Go: Pikachu, but I turned out not liking the game at all.
I used it in my original playthrough, though I eventually temp traded it to Red where I hacked Surf onto it (I didn't have codes for Yellow). When I traded it back, it hated me! I seem to recall it even showing a skull above its head when I talked to it.
I used it for most of my most recent playthrough, but I dropped it for Magneton toward the end since I was wanting to raise a team to finally clear Gym Leader Castle (Stadium) with.