Transcript of 96th Session between Charles Balis, M.D. and Ms. Anna Green, Thursday, October 22, 1998 at 4:00 pm.

Ms. Green: Hello, Doctor Balis.
Dr. Balis: Hello, Anna. What happened to you last week?
Ms. Green: Work. I'm sorry, I'll try to be better about our appointments.
Dr. Balis: All right...
Ms. Green: And...
Dr. Balis: Yes?
Ms. Green: Well, I kind of have plans for tonight.
Dr. Balis: Yes?
Ms. Green: Well, the Exotic Neurotic...I mean the Exotic Erotic Ball is tonight.
Dr. Balis: Halloween is not until next week...
Ms. Green: Yes, well, they have it early.
Dr. Balis: And you're going?
Ms. Green: Yes?
Dr. Balis: Why are you being so cagey about it? Who else is going?
Ms. Green: It will just be Martin and I. We'll go as spectators. We won't do anything too outrageous. In fact, we'll be the most boring...hmm, the most boring friends to go.
Dr. Balis: Friends?
Ms. Green: We are not going as a couple. We are just going together. For safety.
Dr. Balis: I see.
Ms. Green: So I need to live a few minutes early, so I have a chance to get ready.
Dr. Balis: You're going in costume?
Ms. Green: It's just something simple that Martin pulled together for me. I think it's mostly paper and his art work. It's not at all revealing. It's just fun.
Dr. Balis: Have you seen it?
Ms. Green: Well, not really. But Martin has been making it for me for about a week, and he has described it in quite some detail.
Dr. Balis: I see.
Ms. Green: It should be lovely.
Dr. Balis: Sounds cold. Well, don't get sick again.
Ms. Green: I won't. I got these polar...polartex? Whatever. I got these new fabric tights and sweater. They're black and they'll be perfect under a paper costume.
Dr. Balis: I see. So how are your parents, Anna?
Ms. Green: Please, don't put me in a bad mood just before a party, Doctor. I want to have fun. I really do.
Dr. Balis: You're still angry with your dad for getting a detective to watch you?
Ms. Green: Even more so now. He went ahead and told my mom everything. Everything! Can you believe that?
Dr. Balis: Well, actually...
Ms. Green: He specifically promised me that he'd keep my mother out of this. And now she knows. She called me last weekend in tears. My dad insists that she figured it all out herself and that she knew everything all along. But my mother is just not such a good actress. He must have spilled the beans. I told him, from now on, I'm going to have problems trusting him--he just put a rift into our relationship. And it's for no reason. Martin and I are not living together anymore. Kathy's gone. The investigation...I don't even know what's going on there--no one has contacted me for over a month. They're no longer interested in me. I guess they finally figured that I'm of absolute no use to them. So my life has been as normal as anyone's. There was no reason to make my mom so freaked.
Dr. Balis: Just calm down, Anna. That was a big secret to keep from your mother...
Ms. Green: Well...
Dr. Balis: Well, it's rare that a couple keeps secrets from each other for long, especially about their children. Don't be too hard on your dad. He's just worried about you.
Ms. Green: I know. But now I have to make a special trip up to Davis just to have this conversation with my mom. And I can tell you just how much I'm looking forward to that.
Dr. Balis: I think I can imagine.
Ms. Green: Yeah.
Dr. Balis: So how does it feel to live by yourself again? Are you as worried about being alone in the house as you thought you would be?
Ms. Green: It's not as bad as I thought. But I work a lot,'s a bit lonely. There is a show on HBO, "Sex and the City." It's about four women friends living in New York City, and how they cope with being single in their thirties. It's sad and funny at the same time. I see myself there. I'll be thirty soon. I'm fairly successful at what I do. And my needs in a relationship have definitely changed.
Dr. Balis: What do you mean?
Ms. Green: It was different when I was just twenty-two. There were different expectations placed on me, and I had different needs then. I want a lot more from my partner now. I feel like I have to make a snap judgment on whether a man is a prospective husband or just a nighttime diversion. There doesn't seem as much time to just be with someone now. I feel the pressure. If he's not a prospect, I have to move on, no matter how much fun we might be having.
Dr. Balis: Where do you feel this pressure coming from?
Ms. Green: There was always some pressure from my parents. But now that's more intense. They're more worried that I will be left alone, or that I will settle for someone who's just not...well, who's not as good as I should have.
Dr. Balis: I see. Is it just your parents...
Ms. Green: No. It's everywhere. There's pressure in the office, "Are you seeing anyone? Is he the one?" There's this sense I no longer can afford to waste my time on men who are just...I feel like I can't have fun with a man anymore. He's it, or he's out. There's no middle ground when you're a woman approaching her thirties. I think it's strange. And it's not just my friends. I find myself feeling that way, too. I'll have a short meaningless conversation with a guy at Starbucks, and I'm already thinking: "Is he someone I'd be interested in spending my life with?" If not, why waste the time and effort? Crazy, isn't it?
Dr. Balis: Do you want to be married?
Ms. Green: Yes. I do. I want to have a life partner with whom I can share my whole life. It sounds so corny when I say it out loud, but I really want to have someone that close to me, someone I could love with complete abandon, someone I could talk to and share my dreams with. I do feel so lonely, Doctor. And I feel like if I continue to feel this way, I have no chance at finding someone right for me.
Dr. Balis: Hmm?
Ms. Green: It's like the more desperate you feel, the less likely you'll's like I'm jinxing it by wanting it too much.
Dr. Balis: I understand. It's fairly common actually...
Ms. Green: Sure it is. I bet you feel it, although it's better for men. Men tend to get better looking and more interesting with age. Women just get older.
Dr. Balis: I...
Ms. Green: I found my first gray hair the other day...
Dr. Balis: Is that what this is about? One gray hair doesn't make you old, Anna. And I personally think you're more interesting now then when I first saw you over two years ago. You've matured. And you've gained character...
Ms. Green: You're just trying to make me feel good.
Dr. Balis: Yes, but what I've just said is true. I've seen that HBO show, and I find those women more interesting than the twenty-somethings that I see around SII.
Ms. Green: God, now I'm one of the old crowd at SII! I used to be the hip twenty-something.
Dr. Balis: You're still the hip twenty-something, Anna...
Ms. Green: Yeah...
Dr. Balis: Except you have more stock options, more responsibility, and more opportunities to work on better and more interesting projects. Isn't that right?
Ms. Green: Well, I do love my job now. And I do make enough money that I don't have to worry about paying my rent or buying stuff that I want, even if frivolous. And I do have quite a sizable chunk of assets thanks to the "SII Mole" and the investment plan by Katherine Lippard. I got a letter from her and it made my day. You must have gotten a similar letter. Did you?
Dr. Balis: See? Your life is better now than when you were fresh out of college. And now that you're pulling yourself out of the...
Ms. Green: S&M thing?
Dr. Balis: Are you sorry that you've closed that chapter in your life?
Ms. Green: Well, it's not closed. It's just put away for the time being. If I find the man, I want him to...I want to play games that make me feel...I want that. I like to be...
Dr. Balis: I understand. But I think what you want is more in the domain of sex games and not the S&M lifestyle that you experienced before with Martin and Kathy. Right?
Ms. Green: Hmm. I want to go to the Halloween party at the S&M club. Do you think that's wrong?
Dr. Balis: Why do you want to go?
Ms. Green: It turns me on. And I think it will be more fun and games and less intense than usual. I think there will be people there who are just doing it for fun. And I feel like there'll be less pressure on me to perform. So...
Dr. Balis: Hmm.
Ms. Green: So I made plans to go with Martin. And we have an understanding--his job is to make me feel secure, and my job is to secure some action for him.
Dr. Balis: I see.
Ms. Green: In fact, I think I'm late for the ball, Doctor. I've got to go. I haven't even had a fitting for my costume yet. Martin must be mad at me by now.
Dr. Balis: All right. Take care of yourself. Don't get into any trouble.
Ms. Green: I won't. I love you, Charles.
Dr. Balis: Anna?
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