“It’s not about whether you’re thinking is based in reality or not, or delusional or not, I don’t care. What I care about is how much distress those thoughts are causing you, that’s my focus.” she said, as she reached across to her desk for a large pashmina wrap covered in Aztec designs. “You know what I mean?” she enquired, wrapping it tight around her shoulders and clutching it to her chest like a child playing superheroes.
Hearing her say that was a great relief to me. I’d been anxious about telling my Psychologist about the new Shrinks diagnosis, how she might react and whether she’d be still happy to treat me. She reassured me that she didn’t care if I was diagnosed with “Psychosis, neurosis, bippity boppity boop schwing a ding-osis, whatever…” All she was worried about was how I learned to respond to these thoughts, and as she reminded me, that’s what she’s there to teach me.
We then delved into some of the things my paranoid beliefs lead me to do. When I got to the covering of the webcam, and putting my phone in a drawer she paused for thought.
“That’s a very typical paranoid thought, but to be honest, if this was forty years ago, and you thought someone might be watching you, I’d totally agree that was an inconceivable notion. But today, well… it’s not entirely impossible. Now, if you told me you thought the TV was sending you messages or speaking to you, I’d be like ‘Definitely delusional paranoid thinking’, but as far as I’m concerned, you can keep covering your webcam, and putting your phone in the desk drawer, I have no problem with it!” she said laughing. I felt a wave of slight vindication as I chuckled along with her. If it’s good enough for Mark Zuckerberg, it’s good enough for me.
We shot the shit for the rest of the hour, talking about how I was coping with the past fortnight’s developments. I told her I’d started to blog and we talked about how to manage negative criticism. And kindly, she said she was happy for me to write about her and that I should give her a good plug. I told her I’d work on commission, for every ten new patients I get a free session. Hit me up if you want a referral to a rad Psychologist in Melbourne’s South East, and tell her I sent ya.