Transcript of 6th Session between Charles Balis, M.D., and Ms. Eliza Raven, Tuesday, April 8, 1997 at 12 pm.

Ms. Raven: Afternoon, dear Doctor.
Dr. Balis: Hello, Eliza.
Ms. Raven: Sorry I missed last week.
Dr. Balis: Well, I was very worried about you.
Ms. Raven: Things were hectic again.
Dr. Balis: Well, perhaps we should slow your sessions down if you can't make it in but once every other week.
Ms. Raven: Dr. Balis!
Dr. Balis: I'm sorry, Eliza. I had the flu last week and am still feeling a bit under the weather.
Ms. Raven: Well, you don't have to take it out on me.
Dr. Balis: I really am sorry.
Ms. Raven: So am I. I wish I could have made it in. Things have really slowed down at work and on the home front, so it should be easier to get to my sessions. Can you forgive me, please?
Dr. Balis: Well...
Ms. Raven: Oh, good Doctor! I didn't mean to be like this!
Dr. Balis: I'm pulling your leg, Eliza. Yes, you're forgiven. I would just like your treatment to be a little more consistent. It's like exercising. If you want to get in shape, you have to be on a consistent schedule.
Ms. Raven: And if I want my emotions and such in shape, my sessions need to be consistent. I get it.
Dr. Balis: Good. Where would you like to begin today?
Ms. Raven: Well, last time, we talked about Mom.
Dr. Balis: You're calling her "Mom" now?
Ms. Raven: I think part of me had to forgive her. I can't call her "Mother" anymore. I used that word like an insult. On the other hand there's Father...
Dr. Balis: Are you angry with your father now?
Ms. Raven: He's not quite the prince I thought he was.
Dr. Balis: What happened to change your mind?
Ms. Raven: He's making wedding plans, right? Well, Calypso is being absolutely cool. She wants me in the wedding, along with Isaac. In fact, she's made an effort to meet Mom and have a talk with her about Father. Mom went one step further and gave Calypso a locket she used to carry around with her when she was AWOL from the family. It has Isaac's and my pictures in it. But Father had a fit and said that Calypso can't have it and she definitely can't wear it. I don't know why he reacted like that.
Dr. Balis: Well, it is a locket his ex-wife used to have.
Ms. Raven: He idolized Mom. He worshipped the ground she walked on. I don't know what happened.
Dr. Balis: Well, what has changed in the past few weeks?
Ms. Raven: Family-wise?
Dr. Balis: Yes.
Ms. Raven: Well, let's see. Isaac and his new girlfriend are already having problems. Father and Calypso are making wedding plans. Isaac and I are doing the same. Father has been distancing himself from me. Calypso is trying to be my new best friend. Mom and I have started to talk about the past. Um, Father and Isaac have been fighting a lot lately. Isaac and Calypso are forming a weird alliance. Isaac refuses to talk to Mom. I don't know what else to tell you. Mom and Calypso are making some tenuous moves toward being kind to each other.
Dr. Balis: Wait a second. That's quite a list. You said that you and your mother are talking about the past?
Ms. Raven: I finally told her I was going to therapy. She surprised me and said she'd been going for about a year now. All of a sudden, she has a human side. So, I asked her what she went in for. Mom is in therapy to sort out her problems. So, we talked about therapy. And she wanted to know what you and I talk about. I thought to myself, What the hell. Our relationship can't get any worse. I told her, "A lot of stuff, and you," "Me?" she said. "You." I said. Then she wanted to know what about her. And there we were, talking about my therapy sessions and her. I finally got up the courage to ask her why she left. She managed to show me, in some sort of way, that her leaving wasn't out of pure malice. So now, Mom and I have started over, and very slowly are working to a point where we can restore our relationship. It's like I'm reading a book which started out poorly, but is suddenly getting better, and I like it.
Dr. Balis: Hmm...maybe your father is reacting to you and your mother's newfound relationship.
Ms. Raven: Maybe, but I don't think that's all that's going on.
Dr. Balis: What do you mean?
Ms. Raven: I could see him reacting by distancing himself from me. But I don't know why he is always fighting with everyone around him.
Dr. Balis: Is this something new from your father?
Ms. Raven: He's always been the sweetest...Doctor, I'm really worried about this. I don't want to completely lose my father, but it feels like that's what's happening.
Dr. Balis: Perhaps your father is going through some problems that he needs to work out right now. Preparing for a marriage is often a time for introspection.
Ms. Raven: I don't know, but I miss him.
Dr. Balis: It's unfortunate that just when you're forging a relationship with your mother that you are experiencing a distancing from your father.
Ms. Raven: But I need to understand where Father is coming from.
Dr. Balis: I believe you'll have to talk to your father for the answers. I'd like to change the subject if I may.
Ms. Raven: Okay.
Dr. Balis: Have you thought about the medication?
Ms. Raven: Well, you already said it was okay.
Dr. Balis: I've checked with your other doctors and everything seems like it will work out well.
Ms. Raven: But...
Dr. Balis: But I do need to counsel you a little on your smoking.
Ms. Raven: smoking?
Dr. Balis: Look, Eliza, smoking is always bad for you. I know that you know that and I'm not going to give you a general lecture about the dangers of smoking. I'm sure you've heard it before. But with regard to the birth control medication you're taking, there's a substantially increased risk of some nasty side effects if you smoke.
Ms. Raven: Oh, Doctor. You are a silly man.
Dr. Balis: I feel that I am justified in my concern, Eliza.
Ms. Raven: I figured because you were a Doctor, you'd realize why I choose those birth control pills.
Dr. Balis: Oh?
Ms. Raven: I got the ones that were the least likely to cause me harm when I smoke. And I've really cut back on the smoking. I'm down to a pack a day. For me, that's an excellent feat.
Dr. Balis: Well, I guess you have had this lecture before.
Ms. Raven: Several times, Doctor. I do know that one day, I'd like to quit. Perhaps now is not the time, but it is a goal in the future.
Dr. Balis: It is wise of you to set goals for yourself.
Ms. Raven: Thank you, Doctor. I thought so too.
Dr. Balis: Well, Eliza, is there anything else on your mind that you need to talk about? Perhaps we can talk about your relationship with Luke.
Ms. Raven: Well, Luke and I are fine. Things at home are kind of boring, if you don't mind me saying.
Dr. Balis: Not at all. It does seem that our time here is up, though.
Ms. Raven: Oh.
Dr. Balis: Here's a prescription for Zoloft. I have a patient information sheet that I'd like you to read. And I want you to call me, night or day, if you notice anything strange with this medication. It will take a couple of weeks for us to really be able to evaluate its effect, but I think it could really make a lot of difference in your mood.
Ms. Raven: All right. How do I take this stuff?
Dr. Balis: I'm sorry. It's a pill that you'll take once each morning.
Ms. Raven: That's it? Just one pill a day?
Dr. Balis: That's it. We'll see how you're doing on it over the next four weeks or so. Can I schedule you for an appointment for next week?
Ms. Raven: Yes.
Dr. Balis: Will you show up?
Ms. Raven: That was uncalled for, Doctor.
Dr. Balis: I'm sorry, Eliza. I thought I was being humorous.
Ms. Raven: Not quite.
Dr. Balis: Okay, I have you scheduled for Tuesday of next week. That's April 15th at noon, okay?
Ms. Raven: Sounds great.
Dr. Balis: I'll see you then, Eliza.
Ms. Raven: Okay, Doctor. See you then.
Dr. Balis: Goodbye, Eliza.
Ms. Raven: Bye, Doctor Charles Balis.
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