Transcript of 24th Session between Charles Balis, M.D. and Mr. Thomas Darden, Friday, May 15, 1998 at 4:00 pm.

Dr. Balis: Hello, Tom. Please take a seat.
Mr. Darden: Okay.
Dr. Balis: You were very angry when we last spoke. I'm hoping you didn't follow through with your threats after you stormed out of my office?
Mr. Darden: I saw Scott talking to Rachel again. I watched her smile as he spoke and I saw how his eyes were focused on her cleavage. Then he touched her on the arm, and something just snapped.
Dr. Balis: Oh no.
Mr. Darden: Without thinking, I ran over to Scott's cubicle, cocked my arm way back, and punched him in the jaw. He didn't even see it coming. The smack seemed to echo throughout the floor. Every employee nearby suddenly stopped what they were doing, stood up, and watched the spectacle. Rachel started screaming for me to stop...
Dr. Balis: Tom, how could you have...?
Mr. Darden: His legs were really wobbly from the blow, but I didn't stop there. I wouldn't be satisfied until he was on the floor. Pushing Rachel away, I let three more punches slam into his face--a right, a left, another right--until he finally collapsed. Some blood had trickled down onto his shirt, and he just stared up at me all glassy-eyed. I don't think he even knew where he was at that point.
Dr. Balis: I don't know what to say, Tom.
Mr. Darden: Rachel was still yelling at me: "How could you? What the hell are you thinking? Why are you doing this? Please stop!" Ignoring her, I grabbed Scott by the collar and threw one last punch. When I hit his face, it felt soft and spongy, and my hand seemed to sink into it, which would make sense since it was only the back of my sofa.
Dr. Balis: Tom, don't scare me like that again.
Mr. Darden: Had you going there for a while, didn't I?
Dr. Balis: For a while, yes. But had that really happened, I probably would have been informed about it by your superiors or SII security. And I'm sure you would have ended up in jail.
Mr. Darden: Maybe. I'm not sure if you would have found out about it, though. I'm not entirely certain my manager knows that I'm seeing a shrink.
Dr. Balis: Believe me, I would have found out. Word travels fast. How is the situation between you and Rachel? Any changes?
Mr. Darden: Not really. I haven't asked her to do anything with me since that last lunch I told you about it.
Dr. Balis: Why not?
Mr. Darden: It's all a waste of time. I'm not going to get anywhere with Rachel. It's all an effort in futility. I might as well get castrated. All the love I'm ever going to get is from my right hand. Sometimes whacking off is better than sex, anyway.
Dr. Balis: That's not a very healthy outlook.
Mr. Darden: Which is why I'm sitting here, I guess.
Dr. Balis: You're not giving yourself enough credit, Tom. Whether you like to hear it or not, asking Rachel out to lunch was great progress. Even though you asked her via e-mail, the fact remains that you still asked her. You took a risk despite being afraid. Why stop now? What else are you afraid of?
Mr. Darden: I'm afraid that I'm going to make more of a fool of myself. And I'm afraid she's going to really get to know me and find out how boring I really am and how I have nothing going for me. Hell, I'm just glad my cat doesn't get out of the house. If she did, she'd find out there are a whole lot better owners than I am. I'll probably come home from work one night and discover that she has packed up her litter box and split. And then I'll find some note stuck on the bottom of the fridge that reads, "Dear Master: I've found a new person to take care of me. You were such a bore. You never gave me tuna like this guy does. Meows and Purrs....'Claws.' P.S. I left a little memento on your bed for you to remember me by!"
Dr. Balis: Hmm.
Mr. Darden: My cat's new master will probably end up being fucking Scott Collavito--he'd succeed in taking two pussies away from me.
Dr. Balis: You really are bitter over that man. Why do you think you are so jealous of him in particular?
Mr. Darden: Because I've seen his type before. He's a frat boy, a guy born with a "get through life free" card in his mouth. It sickens me how easy it is for people like him to get just about anything they desire in life.
Dr. Balis: Why is it sickening?
Mr. Darden: Why do you think? I've been through a lot of pain and disappointment through the years. Whatever small achievements I have made were a struggle for me. I worked hard to be Rachel's friend. I spent a lot of time making her like me. Then, suddenly, Scott came out of nowhere and, in a couple month's time, became someone she feels ten times more comfortable talking to. Where's the justice in that?
Dr. Balis: Perhaps Rachel feels more comfortable talking to him, but perhaps not. If she does, why do you think that is?
Mr. Darden: I don't know.
Dr. Balis: She clearly knows you're interested in her romantically, and your jealous responses have certainly left an impression on her. But she forgave you for what you did to Scott, and that shows she still values your friendship.
Mr. Darden: But I want more from Rachel. I want to be involved with her. I want to be the one that makes her truly happy. And I want her to love me back.
Dr. Balis: Those types of feelings take time to develop, Tom. What reasons have you given Rachel to care about you that deeply?
Mr. Darden: None. I've been too busy being bitter and angry and shooting off computer viruses to people she talks to.
Dr. Balis: So how do you get her to feel differently about you?
Mr. Darden: What am I, fucking Silly Putty? You press me against your words and expect me to spew them back at you? I don't fucking know, Charles. If I knew how to make her feel the way I want her to feel, then I wouldn't be having any problems, now would I?
Dr. Balis: Well, do you think that giving up asking her out is going to help your chances?
Mr. Darden: Of course not. But I've seen this pattern before. Boy meets girl. Boy asks girl out. Boy and girl become lovers. Girl yawns a lot. Girl meets new boy. Girl chews on old boy's heart. Old boy discovers beer...
Dr. Balis: Hmm.
Mr. Darden: It's not worth it. I'm just going to get knocked on my ass again.
Dr. Balis: Maybe, and maybe not. If you think that way going into a situation, you certainly aren't going to improve your chances. But if it doesn't work out with Rachel, there are many other women out there who may be compatible with you.
Mr. Darden: Sure. Plenty of fish in the fucking sea, right? Except whenever I jump into the water, the fish suddenly scatter and vanish.
Dr. Balis: At least you'd be getting into the water. Not long ago, you wouldn't even consider nearing the shore.
Mr. Darden: Whatever. A couple of people at work are trying to push me into proceeding with Rachel. There's another co-worker, Gina Cartwright, who's getting married this weekend. Rachel's going to the wedding, and so am I. Gina talked me into going, and now she wants me to try to hang out with Rachel while I'm there. If I show up, that is. We both know what happened the last time that I accepted a wedding invitation.
Dr. Balis: Yes. You circled around the church several times, afraid to go inside because of all the strangers there.
Mr. Darden: Yeah. Well, I'm not looking forward to Gina's wedding any more than I did Cherie's. I'm going to be nervous, agitated, and hopefully very drunk. Somehow at the reception, I figure I'll be in a corner somewhere, quietly downing beers and wishing I were home.
Dr. Balis: Tom, you should go to this wedding. I think it's very important that you attempt to socialize. You will be nervous, true, but it will be a valuable social experience.
Mr. Darden: I think I'll only go because I know Rachel will be there. It's funny. Deep down, I hope I get to hook up with her. But with my luck, she'll end up finding some dashing single guy at the reception.
Dr. Balis: Stay positive, Tom. You may be pleasantly surprised.
Mr. Darden: All right. I positively believe I'm going to have a miserable time this weekend.
Dr. Balis: Hmm. Well, our time is about up. How would you like to schedule our next session?
Mr. Darden: The two week thing seems to be working for me.
Dr. Balis: I'll see you in two weeks then. Goodbye, Tom.
Mr. Darden: Later.
Arrow, Straight, Left, Earlier Arrow, Straight, Right, Later

Button to Dr. Balis' Notes Doctor Balis' Notes on this Session

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