I stand here before you, in the backyard of cyberspace, cradling my dirty laundry as the breeze catches my hair... I'm here because I need to unload, because, I'm in therapy.
I'm a young person, shall-we-say, a twenty-something. I'm single, though not lacking for suitors or even people who think they're my boyfriend, and I live in a notorious hellhole, and I have a lot of secrets.
Secret #1: I have a very prestigious occupation as a dancer at a gentleman's club, but this is not another stripper blog, and I'm not gonna dwell on it.
Secret #2: I have a very mild form of every Cluster-B personality disorder in the DSM-IV and a load of addictive tendencies and bad habits.
Secret #3: I am terribly, terribly lonely.
Secret #4: I am terribly, hopelessly in love with my therapist.
There. I have lots of secrets, my own and other people's, and I'm very good at keeping them, but I think that's a good place to start.
I began therapy at the urging of an old f*@!buddy/person-who-thought-he-was-my-boyfriend/ex/person, and sent him to the curb after my second session. I was only with the ineffectual SOB because of Secrets no. 2 & 3 and because I live in a notorious hellhole, and I was getting so depressed I could no less stand him than kick him to the curb, and the further I sank the more impossible it was to commit to a 9-5, and the more tempting it was to resort to Secret no. 1, which I couldn't possibly do with him around. He was keeping me down but also paying for everything so I was in a sort of Catch-22 and, despondent, I figured I'd just label myself dysfunctional and hide behind a professional skirt. I used my insurance (blessed, blessed PPO, cursed, cursed new government plan) Dial-A-Doc option and found one with a positively Austenian name, jogging distance from my apartment, and after a brief-- intelligent, compassionate and concise-- phone interview, I made an appointment. I was anxious to get in there, cry me a river, and turn all anguish and personal responsibility over to the hands of a qualified provider (double-entendre duely, dually noted.)
I sat in his waiting room and browsed through the literary selection-- Time, Vanity Fair, Newsweek-- standard stuff but a refreshing contrast to my other shrink's variety which could rouse a latent eating disorder or sexual identity crisis with all the cut, sun-kissed, bare-chested dudes on the covers. (Among the weeklies also lurked a dated, unbound, black-and-white precautionary pamphlet about the perils and no-no's of Whitecoat-Wacko sex, which upon discovery struck me as funny and a little odd, but which I now recognize as a preemptive strike, and have lately taken to reading as I wait, hidden between the pages of one of the heftier glossies, perched almost upright on my knee.)
He opened the door and I was just, taken aback. Dr. Darcy* is gobsmacked gorgeous. Stupid gorgeous, really. He looks like a doctor from a soap opera, as photographed by a giggling, Gaussian Blur-happy groupie-amateur with a digicam and bootleg version of Adobe PhotoChop, sans tutorial. He truly glows; he towers, just under the maximum height cutoff for male models, his eyes are the color of the midday sky after a thunderstorm, he really could turn the world on with his smile, it is genuine and contagious and radiant and brimming with unironic joy. Somewhere in the back of my mind I regretted the depressed teenager getup I wore.
As he asked the routine questions and jotted down his impressions (what were they! what were they!) I took in my surroundings. Tasteful. Spacious. Original painting. Print, artist's name unrecognizable. Love the art. He has a really good poker-face but even at that first meeting I caught the barely perceptible shift, the shadow lengthening under his eyelashes, when he has a hidden thought. This time the hidden thought was that I said something ridiculous, as I spilt my tired old beans about moving, loneliness, bad relationship. And then point blank:
"Wait a minute, what's good about this guy?"
And buh-bye, boyfriend.
Anyhow. That's enough for today. It's been over three months and needless to say, I've stirred another ingredient into my can of beans, and I can't very well talk to my therapist about it, because, in spite of my better sense, I am still hopeful that I have a shot. In spite of all the odds against me on this one-- in spite of "transference," his position, his career, in spite of all the crap he knows about me that I'd never share with a man with whom I had any hopes for any kind of union, even an ineffectual SOB monkey-man and let alone a demigod like Dr. Darcy, and all the personal crap I know about him that he'd never share with me or any other walk-in lunatic, potential Tony Soprano patient-person, and for good reason, but that I've discovered on my own, well-guarded as it is, because if I'd been given some different opportunities in life I'd make a damn good spy.
So, here I am, faceless and anonymous, airing out my dirty laundry in cyberspace, in hopes of some connection, support, and therapy... Maybe even some answers. Maybe it'll stop. But I will be the unsung hero of Transferers everywhere, and I will chronicle my experience on the couch.
Love and latent phobias,
*Names changed. Obviously.