Transcript of 16th Session between Charles Balis, M.D. and Ms. Eliza Raven, Tuesday, July 8, 1997 at 12:00 pm.

Dr. Balis: Good afternoon, Eliza.
Ms. Raven: Hello, Doctor Balis.
Dr. Balis: So, what's going on this week?
Ms. Raven: Well, I read the first two chapters of the book you gave me last time. I think I've become really aware of how I think.
Dr. Balis: That's good.
Ms. Raven: Well, I know I'm dealing with a lot of resentment and control issues.
Dr. Balis: Resentment and control are certainly two very potent issues.
Ms. Raven: I know. But the resentment comes from a lack of control of a situation. Like when I was a child and my mom left, I couldn't control the situation and I resented mom because she did. You see?
Dr. Balis: Yes, I do.
Ms. Raven: Also, when I read the chapters, part of me was thinking: "This is great! Wow!" And another part was thinking: "Bullshit."
Dr. Balis: I'm glad you've become aware of what you're thinking.
Ms. Raven: Me too. The book is helping, even the small portion that I have read. But the book isn't all I want to talk about today.
Dr. Balis: What's on your mind?
Ms. Raven: Peter.
Dr. Balis: Peter Hossfeld?
Ms. Raven: Yes. I got a frantic...well, maybe not frantic, but that's how I saw it. I got a frantic call from him, asking me to come over. I've never been to his place, and I've been missing him so much lately. I can't describe what it is. Maybe it is love, maybe it isn't. I don't know what it is. But I feel empty when he's gone, or I haven't seen him in a long time. I don't know. Doctor Balis, I'm in love, aren't I?
Dr. Balis: I don't know. Do you think you're in love with Peter?
Ms. Eliza: I have all the classic symptoms--I like him, and he's a friend. I can't see my life without him. I get mad when I hear about how Serena's treating him. And yeah, I'm a little jealous, of course. I mean, I love him and I can't have him.
Dr. Balis: How does that make you feel?
Ms. Raven: Well, I don't know. I think I expressed myself pretty well, just now. I'm jealous of Serena. She controls him. There's another control resentment issue right there. I resent her for controlling Peter...but I think I can do something about it...but anyway. May I continue?
Dr. Balis: Sure, go ahead.
Ms. Raven: Well, I get this phone call. He tells me Serena is out and he wants to see me. I rush over to his place. It was really awkward at first--neither of us had seen each other in so long. He asked me about my wrists. I told him that life has been difficult--and it has been. And I asked him where he'd been for so long. He thought that I was blaming him for my attempt. Maybe I was--I haven't really tried to process it yet.
Dr. Balis: Hmm.
Ms. Raven: I asked what Serena's been doing to him. I mean, Jesus! He looked like Skeletor from He-Man! It was just awful--he was gaunt and wasted. He looked horrible. He was gray and everything. It was was so horrible, Doctor Balis.
Dr. Balis: I agree, Peter looks bad. It must have been difficult for you to see someone you care for so deeply in that state.
Ms. Raven: Oh, it was. He said that Serena wasn't doing anything to him. But I just don't think a person could do that to himself. I asked what she's been feeding him. But he was like: "Oh, I don't know...wheatgrass juice and tea." Something clicked. I don't know why but I went into the kitchen to hunt down this tea. I found two little jars. Here. These are the jars. The labels are "Fair Lady" and "Thorn Apple."
Dr. Balis: Fair Lady and Thorn Apple? I'm not familiar with these.
Ms. Raven: Doctor Balis, Fair Lady is a name for belladonna. And Thorn Apple is a name for datura.
Dr. Balis: Belladonna...isn't it also called Deadly Nightshade?
Ms. Raven: Yes. And both of those herbs, Datura and Belladonna, are poisonous! Serena's been fixing him poison tea! I was furious! Peter heard me fuming and came into the kitchen. I asked him if she put those things in his tea, and he said he thought so. But when I told him what they were, he denied that she put them in his tea. Oh!
Dr. Balis: Hmm.
Ms. Raven: I was frustrated. I'm still frustrated! But I choked it down and asked Peter to show me her garden. He did. I couldn't believe it--where in the world she got her stuff? There was Wolf's Bane, more Belladonna and Datura, Black Hellebore, Henbane, Yew and Wormwood. There was probably more than that--I didn't check. All of those plants are poison and most are for inducing astral projection and things like that. I was astounded and horrified! Where in the world did she get this stuff? Oh, Doctor Balis, do you think there's a law against someone doing stuff like this?
Dr. Balis: I'm not sure. I know you can't poison someone with impunity.
Ms. Raven: I'll research it.
Dr. Balis: Would it make you feel better?
Ms. Raven: If she got arrested? Yes, it would. It would give me some sort of dark satisfaction and it would make me feel better. I'm at the point where I'm willing to fight fire with fire, even if Peter won't stand up for himself. I told him that even if he won't, that I'll try--if only to help him get well. I don't know or care if my intentions are pure.
Dr. Balis: Wouldn't that violate the rule of three?
Ms. Raven: Well, probably. But the Goddess always looks out for her children. And I'm willing to face the consequences.
Dr. Balis: You're willing to take the consequences for Peter's sake?
Ms. Raven: Yes. I guess I am in love.
Dr. Balis: Hmm.
Ms. Raven: But my afternoon didn't end in Serena's infernal garden. We went back inside. I was really emotional. He was upset and asked me not to hurt him. But what could I do? I was hurting him--not on purpose, but as a way to make him see things my way. And that wasn't the only reason I was upset. I ended up admitting how I felt--I told Peter that I wanted him and that I couldn't have him. Then something in my gut kicked in, and the whole fight or flight thing came to mind--I was going to take the flight option. I told Peter I had to go. And--I don't know where he got this energy from--he pursued me and asked me not to leave. He told me that he needs me. So I couldn't leave. Not then. I was crying a little, and he looked like he was so very guilty. I wanted to make it better. And I stayed.
Dr. Balis: I see. What did you do then?
Ms. Raven: He asked me to take him somewhere beautiful. I lead him into an astral meditation--I described my grandfather's yard in the summer at sunset. It's so beautiful there. We were finding animals in the clouds. He asked me where we were, and I told him. He was surprised that it was a real place. I told him that whenever the world looks banal and awful to me, I meditate and come back to Grampy's yard. That was my gift to Peter. He wondered why the rest of the world couldn't be like that. I said that if you choose, you can make the world that way. That seemed to be a new concept for him. I couldn't help myself, though...
Dr. Balis: What?
Ms. Raven: Oh, don't sound so condescending!
Dr. Balis: I wasn't.
Ms. Raven: I kissed him on the cheek. He asked me why I did that, and I said that it felt right. He said: "Does this feel right?" And he kissed me back. On the lips.
Dr. Balis: How did that make you feel?
Ms. Raven: Oh, it was happiness. Pure bliss. And after he kissed me, he said: "I need you too." Oh, I don't think I recall a time when I've been happier. But Serena's impending return made us come back from the astral realm, and we ended the afternoon there.
Dr. Balis: Sounds like you had a good visit.
Ms. Raven: I did. But I don't think I'm going to get too keyed up about it. There is still Serena to deal with. And I don't know if Peter only needs me because I can get him away from Serena or if Peter actually...I don't know. I'm going to be cautious.
Dr. Balis: That's a good attitude to take.
Ms. Raven: Well, it helps to be able to know and be aware of my own thoughts.
Dr. Balis: That's a good first step, Eliza.
Ms. Raven: Thanks. I've been needing to hear some sort of affirmation--that I'm doing a good job.
Dr. Balis: You're doing very well. Keep up the good work.
Ms. Raven: I'll try. Besides seeing Peter, I had to deal with my mom all week. She's gone from being angry to being over-nurturing. She's spoiling me. She keeps a constant eye on me--like she's afraid I'll try to attempt it again.
Dr. Balis: I've noticed that you call it an "attempt." Why is that?
Ms. Raven: I don't like to say the word suicide. It's just a black, awful word that only further serves to remind me of what I tried to do. And last time was not the first time I've had those thoughts.
Dr. Balis: When was the first time?
Ms. Raven: I don't know, a long time ago. I feel like I've been oscillating in and out of these states of happiness and sadness, happiness and sadness. I've almost sliced my wrists two times before this. I've almost smothered myself under a pillow. I've almost drowned myself. And I've contemplated taking an overdose of pills.
Dr. Balis: That's a rather long list, Eliza. What stopped you when you were feeling that way?
Ms. Raven: Well, the "ow" factor.
Dr. Balis: You mean the pain factor?
Ms. Raven: Yes. I figured it would hurt too much. Gods, Doctor Balis, what's wrong with me?
Dr. Balis: Here are the tissues. Thinking about taking your own life is very serious...
Ms. Raven: I took the depression test and scored really high on it.
Dr. Balis: Oh? Where did you take this test?
Ms. Raven: I got some materials on depression and things like that. The test was in one of the pamphlets--"Wakefield Questionnaire" I think. It scared me to see how large those numbers were.
Dr. Balis: They are just numbers, Eliza. We are here to make sure that you'll be all right. It will take time, but I believe that you'll get through this...
Ms. Raven: Doctor Balis, I'm scared. I'm so scared. Every time I think I'm getting better, these feelings come back and gnaw at me like a cancer. I feel like my soul is dying because of these emotions. It's like they rule my world. And I hate it. But I don't feel strong enough to fight it. How in the world can I take care of Peter or anybody else, if I can't take care of myself?
Dr. Balis: We're all here to help you, Eliza. But it will take time. We just have to take it a day at a time. And there will come a day when you'll wake up and these feeling will be gone and you'll be free to live your life.
Ms. Raven: I'm just scared that one day my emotions will take over, and I will be suppressed--I would turn into the Emotional Bogey-Man.
Dr. Balis: We won't let that happen, Eliza. I'm here for you. And if at any time you feel like these thoughts and emotions are getting the best of you, just call me. I'll help you be strong and ride those feeling out until the danger's gone. You don't have to face it alone. I'm here. Your parents, your brother, your friends, Peter...we're all here for you, Eliza.
Ms. Raven: Oh, Doctor Balis...
Dr. Balis: Here's more homework for you--here are chapters three and four. I want you to study these for our next session, okay?
Ms. Raven: Okay. You know, I got a dozen roses from Christina this week. I'm going to call her back later today and thank her, but I'm afraid of how she is going to react. But you're right--I do have friends that care about me.
Dr. Balis: You do. A lot of people care about you, Eliza.
Ms. Raven: So next week, same time, same place?
Dr. Balis: Yes. And if you need me sooner than that, I would be happy to...
Ms. Raven: Oh, no. I'm fine, Doctor Balis. Really. It's just a momentary weakness. I'll be all right in a few minutes.
Dr. Balis: Hmm.
Ms. Raven: Goodbye, Doctor Balis. Thank you.
Dr. Balis: Goodbye, Eliza. Please call me anytime.
Ms. Raven: I will. Thank you. See you next week.
Arrow, Straight, Left, Earlier Arrow, Straight, Right, Later

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