Charles Balis' Journal for the Week ending 11/20/98

Saturday, November 14, 1998

Sunday, November 15, 1998

Monday, November 16, 1998

12 pm. Thirty-Fifth Session with Thomas Darden. I had intended to use this session as an opportunity to delve back into Tom's past, especially the time he spent with his abusive stepfather. I have a hunch that the bulk of Tom's troubles spring from those days. However, Tom came in today in particularly good spirits. He sought a job transfer and got it. He's going to be working in the technical writing department on SIIMole documentation. Tom surprised me by showing a marked lack of interest in Rachel and a renewal in interest in Kelly Wiseling. He genuinely seems to like her--and of course she has a strong interest in him. He chided me for referring to her as a deaf girl--as if that's her most outstanding quality. He seems to have developed a genuine friendship with her. He said that her deafness intimidated him at first, but now he hardly notices it. He's working up his courage to ask her out, but he can't right now because he has renewed a sexual relationship with Sharon; they see each other now about once a week. Tom describes the sex as more than satisfactory, and although he says that he isn't seeking a deeper emotional commitment from her, he sometimes lets himself slip into pretending that one exists. I chided him about his slipshod attempt at practicing safe sex, but more than STDs, I'm concerned about the emotional damage Sharon could easily cause Tom. I'm hoping that he can use the sexual fulfillment that Sharon offers to make himself less sexually desperate and more able to relate to Kelly on an interpersonal level. Perhaps they'll be able to make each other happy. Tom also admits that the Zoloft has been helping him. He's noticed a change himself.

Tuesday, November 17, 1998

Wednesday, November 18, 1998

5 pm. Sixty-Eighth Session with Alex Rozzi. Alex has clearly been thinking a lot about overcoming the pain of his childhood and especially that pain caused by Benny. He told me that he split a stump which contained a burned core. He saw it as a metaphor for his own healing process and saw that the burned core made the log stronger. I'm afraid that Alex might have a tendency to push away those people who would be most likely to help him, like Katherine, Ralph, and me. Alex is ready to dump anyone who didn't believe his story regarding Benny's beating. He told me that he sensed that he would have to move from Katherine's place soon, although not because of anything she said or did. He had a feeling that it was time to go and Ralph, apparently, is trying to get Alex to move back. But Alex thinks Ralph wasn't very nice to him after the police arrested him. Alex told me that he's learned that an eye for an eye isn't the right answer. I told Alex that he seemed to be acknowledging his own mistakes and realizing the impact of the violation done to him. I also complemented Alex on his ability to share his fear and anger with me and with others who care about him. I see all of this as a very positive effort to regain control over his life.

Thursday, November 19, 1998

6:30 pm. Telephone Conversation with Anna Green. Anna didn't show up for her session and then she called me later and wanted to talk. She told me that she engaged in S&M play with Trevor because the circumstances of their stake-out work demanded it. They were in a small S&M group with Gray, who was alone. Gray asked Trevor for permission to play with Anna, which Trevor denied, thank god. But Anna believes that it would have been awkward for them to just sit and watch the others. So they had to put on a show. Anna found herself trussed up with Trevor whipping her lightly--too lightly for Gray's taste. But I was surprised when Anna confessed that she found the situation highly erotic, although also nightmarish. Gray wasn't wearing much, and Anna saw him become erect. The tension between Trevor and Anna afterwards was extreme. Trevor has tried to apologize for what happened, but Anna is too upset to consider his apology. Anna's primary emotion is embarrassment: she's embarrassed because Trevor must have noticed how excited she became when he whipped her. She doesn't feel that she can work with him again. I urged Anna to spend some time getting some perspective on things. I suspect that Trevor is grateful that Anna didn't blow his cover. Anna's reaction seemed extreme, and she ascribed it to Gray's presence. Perhaps that heightened the tension, but I'm beginning to suspect that Anna's interest in S&M isn't solely in response to the desires of others as I had previously believed. But, in some respects, this is the ideal "play acting" S&M scene for Anna--playing the submissive to a dominant who really wasn't and who knew that she was playing a part. All of that was heightened by a receptive audience leering at her. We'll have to sort her true feelings out. I don't want her to believe that she's an S&M devotee, if really she's nothing more than an exhibitionist.

Friday, November 20, 1998

10 am. Thirty-Eighth Session with Sharon Lough. In terms of getting anything therapeutic accomplished, this was a completely worthless session. Sharon wanted to talk about dead skin, toe jam, and pus. I tried to steer the conversation back to her issues, but she insisted on focusing primarily on the products of her lymph system. Sometimes I think that Sharon is only trying to get a rise out of me and, when she's in that mode, there's little I can seemingly do to get her back to reality. Sharon spent the Summer and Fall sleeping late, smoking marijuana, and watching television. Now, not surprisingly, she's not anxious to return to work--in fact she appears to be dreading it. But at least she seems to finally be on the mend physically. Her white cast was replaced by a black temporary cast and she was on crutches rather than in the wheelchair.

3 pm. Nineteenth Session with Rachel Tanner. Physically, Rachel has improved quite a lot. She's no longer ill, and she's reduced her hair pulling. She showed me that the ugly bald patch has been replaced by hair stubble. She's decided to move in with her brother, Evan, and she's going to be living in the laundry room in their flat. Although unglamorous, it's cheap and it's with her brother, so Rachel is happy. As her grandmother is moving to Germany in December, all these changes in Rachel's life are quite imminent. Rachel has an interest in yoga which she tried to pass on to me. But just watching her do a few exercises made my spine hurt. She's planning on taking public transit frequently to get to yoga classes. When I asked about possible contamination issues she might have with public transportation, she said that she's able to handle it. I hope that turns out to be true. I would like to see Rachel become as independent as possible.

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