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CUT-RATE TREATMENT

Dreamed 1993/8/10 by Chris Wayan

THAT DAY

I'm tired of being sick and doctors say it's emotional, so I'm therapist-shopping.

Meet one in the morning who seems good, but she's going on vacation for three weeks, so I better keep looking in the meantime.

That afternoon I head across town to shrink number two: Megan S, on Lake Street. A beautiful old house. View over lawns to a lake... I watch the waves as we talk. Megan keeps asking questions that go beyond learning about me, jumping into therapy. Premature, it seems to me. She reads the one-page bio I wrote, but reluctantly, then keeps asking questions answered on the page she just read. She says "I expected Catholics or fundamentalists in your background." Then she jumps to a past life she sees in me, along with very tense energy, bound with lotsa cords to others, both in this life and in past. Wants to do energy work to clear my body out before psycho-anything. Reiki, for example. And I must learn to cut psychic loose ends, as they teach at Psychic Horizons. Recommends a book, "Hidden Guilt."

The session runs over, next client is late. Then she asks for money. Not a specific amount. Very unclear. "Well, this was a session, I need to charge something for my time; I didn't for many years. Most therapists do charge for their first session." The point is, professionals who do so, say so. "Would you have come if I'd brought up the fees first thing on the phone?" Hmmmm. So it's bait and switch? Finally she says minimum she could accept is $20, we spent well over an hour and she was doing energy work with me the whole time, Reiki to keep me from getting sick... She tried to do energy work on me without asking my permission? Jeez.

She did spend a long time with me, and she believes what she's doing is therapy, even if I think she has no more brains than a clam, so finally I just pay her $20 to shut her up, and leave. Write it off to the shopping process, but still I feel mad--and silly for feeling mad.

Though her advice to USE that technique to toss other people's nonsense outa my head is quite valid--and I intend to do it. I guess she DID give me something--a reminder that knowing things isn't enough. I have to use the knowledge.

Her house felt nice, too. A gorgeous quiet house by a park and a lake, in the heart of a huge city. Someone so dysfunctional she can't discuss her own rates still gets to live in such a nice place. Think about THAT! What's stopping me from getting stuff I want, when idiots get Eden?

Pop on the radio as I drive home. Talkshow. Bisexual women discuss how they're seen and treated. Heterophobia from lesbians, as bad as homophobia from straights! I still feel nothing but envy. The happiness they get from acting on their desires seems worth any amount of criticism from jerks outside. When I follow MY bliss, I get sick. Inner critics!

So just before bed, I try the techniques. I divorce my sister yet again, and chop at the psychic cords tying me to my parents, and kick out my inner ascetic hermit (have to kick his ass, for he won't leave peacefully)...

But I know I'm going to get sick from this. Just too much. Too much fear and humiliation--telling my horrible history over and over all day to strangers, and too much guilt about money and sex, and too much Megan, with her New Age pretentions and hidden guilt...

THAT NIGHT

It's the Cold War. I'm working in the Stanford library when there's a huge BOOOM! We all rush outside...

A big military jet has crash-landed outside the library complex. The plane's mostly intact, but the pilot was killed. I recognize his name instantly. A famous man, a genius in both physics and medicine. Was he trying to defect? Spying? Perhaps a double game? Unclear. But rumors fly...

Now I'm a lawyer, representing the defector's wife. In my top-floor office, with the lovely view of the park, I explain to my client why she was just convicted on one count (out of several) of complicity in this skyjacking scheme of her husband's... She's devastated by the guilty verdict. I keep insisting "You were acquitted on three out of four counts! You have to remember that juries aren't interested in logic. They know there's a complicated story here that's being kept from them. So they voted their frustration. They knew you weren't in the heart of it, but they couldn't quite believe you knew NOTHING, so they punished you for not helping clear up the mystery--but only a bit."

"But do you believe me?"

"Yes" I say flatly. "He was a very complicated, manipulative, intimidating genius, and I think he abused you. Like that business with the hospital..." She needed a pelvic exam for an IUD fitting. She wanted privacy, anonymity, and her own doctor, preferably a woman. Wouldn't you? But to save money, he made her go to his hospital--his workplace! Everyone in the building was gossiping about her contraceptive choices, wondering about her cheapness or her loyalty--while her husband's close friends, men she knew and had flirted with, were peering up her cunt.

And that was typical. He was a genius, but a cheap, insensitive bastard too. At least... to her.

NOTES NEXT MORNING

NOTE A YEAR LATER

The other therapist, who was going on vacation, worked out well. I'm still seeing her. The long exhausting hunt for someone who could help was finally over--I just didn't know it yet.



LISTS AND LINKS: dreams of therapy - money - planes and choppers - crashes - death - giftedness and genius - public nudity - humiliation - stinginess and self-denial

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