Exact Approximations

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

One flew over.

I went to my first "counseling" appointment today. I walked into a small room, lit with votive candles and humming the water drop sounds of two zen-water-rock thingers. Those things are lame, but I stuck my finger inside of one anyway. To see if I could distract the water flow. I did.

My counselors name was "Rashel" - pronounced Rochelle. I don't know why her parents spelled it like Rachel, but they did. Anyhow, "counseling" consists, essentially, of me looking at the floor and crying while Rashel tells me nothing I haven't already heard before.
Rashel: "Do you have an outlet for your feelings? Journaling maybe?"
Lex: "No. Wait, I have a blog, does that count?"
Rashel: "Does anyone read that, or is it private?"
Lex: "Well, people can read it, but not many do."
Rashel: "You should keep that up, it might help to have a place to vent."
Lex: "Yeah..."

Rashel: "Is there a church or faith-based group that you can turn to for support?"
Lex: "I'm an Atheist."
Rashel: "Oh, right, you said that during intake. So, you don't believe in God?"
Lex: For fucks sake. "No, I don't." Glancing at her computer, I notice a copy of the Serenity Prayer taped to her screen.
Rashel: "That's ok."
Lex: "Yeah..."

Rashel: "Do you ever feel hopeless?"
Lex: Isn't that why I"m in therapy? "Yeah..."

Rashel: "Do you ever feel suicidal?"
Lex: "Yeah..."
Rashel: "Can you promise not to hurt yourself?"
Lex: "I take it day by day."
Rashel: "But do you promise you will call me first, if you get those thoughts?"
Lex: I"m sorry, who are you again? "Yeah..."

Rashel: "You seem really, really down."
Lex: Grabbing another tissue. "Yeah..."
Rashel: "I want you to see the on-call Psychiatrist. Will you wait?"
Lex: "Yeah..."

Psychiatrist: "I want to try some new medications for you. I want to double your anti-depressants... And I hear you're having trouble sleeping and nightmares?"
Lex: "Yeah..."
Psychiatrist: "Ok, I want you to start taking this sleeping medication too, ok?
Lex: "Yeah..."

After I left, I got into my car and began howling. I had a handful of tissues and must have looked like a complete loony bin. Especially to the herds of high-school kids that just got out of class and were filing past me.

Is therapy supposed to make you feel worse?


  • As a long time client of counselors, psychiatrist, therapy groups...etc. I can tell you that I didn't feel better at first. There seemed to be years full of tears that had never been allowed to come out. Eventually I did start to feel better but the process was slow. She's right about your blog, go ahead and use it even if noone reads it. I find it somewhat cathartic when I read it back to myself. I am so sorry that you are so low and that the option of taking your own life somehow seems appealing. I would be devastated if that ever happened. I think your daughter and your love of your life would have even a more difficult time adjusting to it. That's not meant to be a guilt trip...just facts. If you ever need a shoulder to cry on or someone to listen I am always here for you. I love you & admire you for all that you have come to be...don't stop now. There is too much out there to offer the 3 of you that you can't give up now. All my love, the mom

    By Blogger TheMom, at 11:34 AM  

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