Transcript of 15th Session between Charles Balis, M.D. and Ms. Katherine Lippard, Thursday, August 14, 1997 at 3:00 pm.

Dr. Balis: Come in, Katherine.
Ms. Lippard: Thanks. Sorry to change my appointment on such short notice--Major was snooping around again.
Dr. Balis: Oh?
Ms. Lippard: Yes. I can't figure what he wants. He's been in several times in the past few weeks, riling up the staff, going through files, projections, forecasts, balance sheets...
Dr. Balis: Has he given you any explanation?
Ms. Lippard: No, and I asked. I told him that if he tells me what he's after, I could help him find it. He just mutters something about an audit. When I pressed him on it, he said he was the goddamn CEO and he would look at any file he wanted to in his own company. Lloyd may be my boss, but I don't appreciate him going behind my back. Not to mention that he's not qualified to audit my books--he's an administrator and idea man, not a number-cruncher. I'm telling you, I'm thinking of auditing him.
Dr. Balis: Why is that?
Ms. Lippard: I wonder what he's after. I think I already mentioned that I think he may be looking for money for some new takeover scheme or something. I'm beginning to wonder if he's not already skimming.
Dr. Balis: Wouldn't you know about that?
Ms. Lippard: He does have some discretionary funds, and there are some aspects of the company's books I'm not familiar with. I was planning to start a complete audit after Frank announced his retirement anyway--I wanted to get familiar with everything and make a smooth transition. Maybe I'll start early--like Monday.
Dr. Balis: What does Frank think of all this?
Ms. Lippard: I haven't seen much of him lately. He's out all this week, which may be why Major picked right now to really get in my shit. But Frank's spending less and less time around, letting me do more of his work. I can tell you, though, we're going to talk about Major just as soon as he gets back. The staff is going nuts, too. I don't know what they think. I suppose we should talk about that.
Dr. Balis: About what your staff might think?
Ms. Lippard: No, no, not me and you talk. I meant I should talk with the staff.
Dr. Balis: Oh. That sounds like a good idea.
Ms. Lippard: Yeah...
Dr. Balis: Katherine? You still here?
Ms. Lippard:, sorry. Doctor Balis?
Dr. Balis: Yes?
Ms. Lippard: What if I found him?
Dr. Balis: Found who?
Ms. Lippard: My father.
Dr. Balis: What if you found your father?
Ms. Lippard: Yeah. What then?
Dr. Balis: What would you say?
Ms. Lippard: Exactly. Say I hired a detective agency--there's several around town--and gave them all I the information I have about my father, and they found him.
Dr. Balis: Then what?
Ms. Lippard: That's what I'm asking you. Say I flew up to Alaska--or down to Caracas, or wherever the hell he is--and walked up to him and said, "Hi, I'm your daughter." What would I do then? Hug him? Tell him how I missed him? Ask him why? Tissues?
Dr. Balis: Here.
Ms. Lippard: Why don't you keep these where someone can reach them? Surely people cry in here all the time.
Dr. Balis: You're right, I should do that.
Ms. Lippard: Goddamn it, Doctor Balis, why can't I get over this? I miss my father. Yeah, yeah, we've been through that. I keep running back into this like I'm stuck in a software loop.
Dr. Balis: Maybe we should shift perspective on this just a little bit--what do you think this says about you?
Ms. Lippard: Huh? I don't follow you.
Dr. Balis: I'm talking about the issue you have with your father leaving you, and the great amount of feeling that inspires in you. What do you think about yourself as a result of this?
Ms. Lippard: Think? Let's see. What does that say about me? I couldn't get him to stay. He said he loved me, and he knew how much I loved him, but he left anyway. Well, that says a couple of things, doesn't it? It says I didn't love him enough. It says I wasn't good enough, that he thought something else would be better than staying with me. I didn't live up to his expectations somehow.
Dr. Balis: Okay, let's take these one at a time...
Ms. Lippard: The same thing for Andrew, I guess. He went off to find adventure; clearly, I wasn't adventure enough for him...for either of them. If I was good enough, exciting enough, loving enough, they wouldn't have left me. Did I tell you Jake's taking me parasailing Friday?
Dr. Balis: No, you didn't. Why did you mention that just now?
Ms. Lippard: It just popped into my head, I guess. So what?
Dr. Balis: I just noticed that you talked about a lack of adventure and excitement in your previous relationship, and then immediately you mentioned another exciting adventure you're about to have with Jake.
Ms. Lippard: Yeah, Jake's an exciting man, and we've been having a good time together. I'm loosening up, Doctor Balis, getting a life. Isn't that what you said I should do?
Dr. Balis: Yes, it is. And you've made a great deal of progress on that. But I want to point out a trend and see what you think about it.
Ms. Lippard: Okay.
Dr. Balis: You've said that your father left to pursue his dream in far-off and exciting Alaska. Then Andrew left to find adventure. You said that you believe you lost them both because you weren't adventurous enough for them. Right so far?
Ms. Lippard: Yeah.
Dr. Balis: Now you fall in love with Jake, and Jake likes adventure and excitement, too. So you're engaging in all these exciting and potentially dangerous activities with him. Is that really because you're enjoying life more and want to do these things? Or might it be that you're afraid of being too boring for Jake? That if you fail to be adventurous, another man will leave you.
Ms. Lippard: Oh. Oh, wow. You know, I've never considered that. I have felt pretty apprehensive about some of this. Do you really think I'm...what's the term? Overcompensating? That this new life isn't about me, but about my fear of abandonment?
Dr. Balis: What do you think?
Ms. Lippard: Boy, if that's true, then it's all just a fake. I'm just a fake. I'm trying to be someone I'm not, just to keep a man. What does that say about me? No, that's your line. I have to answer that, don't I? Okay, it says I'm a pathetic, man-hungry loser who can't stand to be alone. That I'm too weak to deal with rejection and will go to any lengths to hold onto a boyfriend--a boyfriend who may not even love me. Damn.
Dr. Balis: I think you're being hard on yourself, Katherine.
Ms. Lippard: You think? I wonder. I'll tell you what, though. That's not who I want to be. Strong, self-confident, self-sufficient--that's who I want to be. I want to be a woman who doesn't need a man around--a woman who just keeps one while it's convenient, because it's more fun with a man than without one.
Dr. Balis: Katherine, I think you're taking this to the extreme in the other direction. You've always struck me as a very strong, self-confidant, and self-sufficient woman. That's not your problem. You want to have a healthy relationship in your life. And in such a relationship, you can't take the other person for granted or keep him around as a matter of convenience. That's not how you would like to be treated, is it?
Ms. Lippard: Okay. Right. I just have to...
Dr. Balis: Katherine, do you really enjoy all these activities with Jake?
Ms. Lippard: Well, some of them. The hang gliding scared me shitless. Remember I told you how elated I was after we landed? Most of that was just happy to still be alive. I laughed myself silly after I busted my butt--the irony of it. I was just celebrating staying alive and in one piece, and I went and got hurt. But I really do want to parasail. It doesn't seem too dangerous. I don't have to do anything--the boat does all the work. And if anything goes wrong, I'm on a parachute already. I'll just glide down into the water. They don't even make you wear a helmet or anything.
Dr. Balis: Okay. Just remember, you have the right to say no. If Jake invites you to do something that you're not comfortable with, just say no. Suggest something else. Or let him go alone. Maintain your sense of self, Katherine, you don't need to change for any one. If Jake is going to love you, it's better that he loves who you really are, rather than who you think he wants you to be.
Ms. Lippard: You're right, of course. How long could I keep up the act, anyway?
Dr. Balis: Exactly.
Ms. Lippard: Hey, we did something today, didn't we? I think I made some headway.
Dr. Balis: I think so. And that's our time for today. Can you make Wednesday again next week?
Ms. Lippard: I hope so, unless something comes up again. I'll do my best, anyway.
Dr. Balis: That's fine. See you then.
Ms. Lippard: Good night, Doctor Balis. Thank you...well, for what you do.
Dr. Balis: You're welcome, Katherine. I'm glad to do it. Goodbye.
Arrow, Straight, Left, Earlier Arrow, Straight, Right, Later

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

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