Transcript of 10th Session between Charles Balis, M.D. and Ms. Sylvia Bows, Tuesday, September 17th, 1996 at 4 pm.

Ms. Bows: Hello Doctor. How are you today?
Dr. Balis: Hello Sylvia. I'm fine. How are you? You're looking well. Have you begun to feel the effects of the medication I prescribed?
Ms. Bows: Yes Doctor, stop worrying. I'm feeling much better. The horrible feelings of anxiety and listlessness are going away. And I have begun to sleep at night again. Over all I'm feeling fine physically.
Dr. Balis: Good. And emotionally?
Ms. Bows: Well, as you can imagine there has been a lot of changes in my life since the stick turned blue. First of all, please understand that I'm extremely happy. I got more than I ever hoped for. And I'll do everything and anything to keep my babies happy, healthy, and to term. At least as much as is possible in this situation. The question of the day is how to break the news to my parents and Tom. I think I need to deal with Tom first. I think my mother will ultimately be happy for me even though she'll be totally freaked in the meantime. Maybe I should recommend you to her. What do you think?
Dr. Balis: I don't think that would be proper.
Ms. Bows: I guess not.
Dr. Balis: So you want to wait on telling your parents? And what's your plan with Tom?
Ms. Bows: That is what I want to talk to you about. Last weekend I moved back home. I was feeling stronger emotionally and thought that I could deal with him. And normally I think I could have. But Tom is really edgy. He looks like he lost a lot of weight. He is not speaking but barking out monosyllabically. He looks and acts like a caged animal.
Dr. Balis: Well, Tom's life hasn't been exactly uneventful or stressless. Are you surprised at his reaction?
Ms. Bows: I shouldn't be, but I was.
Dr. Balis: It seems like you're holding all the cards right now. If Tom is that controlling...
Ms. Bows: I know, I know.
Dr. Balis: Has he done something particularly that upset you?
Ms. Bows: I wasn't feeling well Sunday. I got a terrible case of morning sickness, which lasted all day. I even threw up a couple of times. Tom noticed and he just exploded at me. He told me that if I'm there just to give him my stomach virus he's going to throw me out of his house. That I only come home when I'm not feeling well and that I should have stayed with Rene and got her sick instead. He told me that I look awful. That I got fat and swollen. That the life of a prostitute is beginning to take hold of my appearance as well as my intellect. He said that he is ashamed of me. That he kept hoping that this will pass and that it's all just a drug induced nightmare. He said that he should have sued you a long time ago. Well, he just lost it. And I was feeling way too sick to cope with it. I started crying. I haven't done that in such a long time. I'm not even sure Tom has ever seen me cry. He was shocked. He got really quiet and then walked away. He didn't come home until Monday night.
Dr. Balis: Were you worried about him?
Ms. Bows: I'm not sure. It's the way he looked at me just before he left. It made me tremble.
Dr. Balis: Are you sure it's a good idea for you to still share a household?
Ms. Bows: I'm pretty sure that it's a bad idea. I went to my lawyer again. I didn't want to start anything until much later. Second trimester maybe. But with twins it will be too difficult to hide the fact of pregnancy for that long.
Dr. Balis: What are you planning to do?
Ms. Bows: I want to start the divorce machinery as soon as possible and I want Tom out of my house right away.
Dr. Balis: What was your lawyer's advice?
Ms. Bows: She suggested something that I just don't feel comfortable doing.
Dr. Balis: What?
Ms. Bows: She asked if I would be willing to get a restraining order for Tom.
Dr. Balis: He hasn't threatened you has he?
Ms. Bows: No. I don't think that Tom would ever resort to violence.
Dr. Balis: So why the restraining order?
Ms. Bows: Kelly's argument was that he has resorted to extreme measures to avoid having children. He has been actively hostile and extraordinary deceitful. Kelly said that she could make an argument that he might turn violent if confronted with what I have done. She said that my condition is delicate and that I should consider what would be best for me and my children.
Dr. Balis: What do you think that would be?
Ms. Bows: Oh, I know that it wouldn't be having Tom live under the same roof with me. But I don't think I can do the restraining order. I just don't think that physical violence is Tom's style. Oh, he would hurt me but it would all be mental anguish.
Dr. Balis: So what do you want to do?
Ms. Bows: I'm not sure yet. I guess I have several options. One is tell him right away and hope that he'll just move out. But I don't think he'll do that. Another option would be to serve him with divorce papers as a surprise. The problem is that he might demand to keep the house until the divorce is final. And since I moved out and rented another place with Rene already, I don't want to chance it.
Dr. Balis: Is there another option?
Ms. Bows: I can have all the legal papers ready and ask Tom to come with me to one of our sessions and then you could explain the situation to him. I'd give him the divorce papers at the end of our meeting.
Dr. Balis: I don't think so.
Ms. Bows: But I'm sure you could keep Tom rational and make him understand that all of this is just a logical result of his actions. He was the one to have a vasectomy. I would have been perfectly happy to have his children.
Dr. Balis: Sylvia, I'll do all that I can to help you through this ordeal. But I'm not a divorce mediator or a lawyer. And I don't think it would be thereupeutic for you to hide behind me instead of directly facing Tom. You really have to confront him yourself.
Ms. Bows: But I don't know if I can. I'm very tired and I don't want to fight him.
Dr. Balis: But you want to keep the house and get alimony and child support. The phrase you used, I believe, is "I will bleed him dry."
Ms. Bows: You have a good memory Doctor. Yes, I do want all of those things. I think I deserve it after what he put through. It wasn't my intention to have to sleep with every man in sight to get pregnant. He made me.
Dr. Balis: I'm sure it wasn't his intention either.
Ms. Bows: Okay, he drove me to it.
Dr. Balis: It was also my impression that you enjoyed it.
Ms. Bows: Well, just a little.
Dr. Balis: By the way what are your plans regarding the possible father of your twins? And have you thought that it might be more then one?
Ms. Bows: What do you mean?
Dr. Balis: It seems entirely possible that your twins might have two different fathers. After all, they were conceived about two weeks apart and you did have multiple partners during this period.
Ms. Bows: I've been too busy to think of it that way. I've just been concentrating on keeping the father's identity questionable. I don't want there to be any paternity issues. These children are mine exclusively. But having two different fathers...I guess it's possible. Even likely given my schedule. Well, it doesn't matter to me. I'm happy with the genetics of all of the candidates.
Dr. Balis: That's good. But what about all of your men? Do you think they might be interested in who the father was?
Ms. Bows: It's none of their business. I'm married and by law these children are Tom's.
Dr. Balis: I see.
Ms. Bows: Plus there is no way to tell, right?
Dr. Balis: What about DNA testing?
Ms. Bows: I have to agree to that and I won't. Doctor, most of the men I slept with were one night stands. They didn't count on me wanting to get pregnant and probably would rather I didn't raise the issue.
Dr. Balis: Is that true for Richard for example? He was more regular than that.
Ms. Bows: Yes. Richard might be a problem.
Dr. Balis: Did you ever have that talk with him?
Ms. Bows: About multiple partners?
Dr. Balis: Yes. And your relationship with him.
Ms. Bows: I thought it would be best to wait until I'd seen my obstetrician. And then it was just too crazy to have to deal with that.
Dr. Balis: I think you should talk to him. Tell him everything. As unpleasant as it might be right now, it might be worse later.
Ms. Bows: You're right, of course. But it's just too much right now. I want to deal with Tom first. Then my family. And after I know that my pregnancy is okay, after the twelve weeks are up, I'll deal with the rest.
Dr. Balis: That seems reasonable. Do you think you can hide the fact that you are pregnant at work?
Ms. Bows: I can try. Cassie, my secretary, knows apparently. She left me a message. But I talked to her and explained that I don't want anyone to know just yet. She seemed very understanding about keeping my secret. And as for people noticing, the winter is coming up and I can start wearing bulky clothing and sweaters. I think I can get away with it for a while. It's more difficult with Tom. He already noticed a little. It won't be too long before he puts two and two together. I really need to start dealing right away.
Dr. Balis: If you are afraid to confront him alone, why don't you ask Rene to be with you when you talk to him?
Ms. Bows: I might do that, although Rene is a very emotional and volatile person. She might not be the best choice for an arbitrator.
Dr. Balis: Are you looking for an arbitrator or for partner/protector?
Ms. Bows: I guess the later. But it'll be quite a scene. Are you sure you're not willing to participate Doctor?
Dr. Balis: I'm very sure.
Ms. Bows: Oh well, I had to try.
Dr. Balis: I'm sure you'll get what you want Sylvia. Or most of it anyway.
Ms. Bows: Yes Doctor. I guess our time is up? Same time next week?
Dr. Balis: Next Tuesday at 4 pm. Let's see, that's the 24th of September.
Ms. Bows: I might call you for moral support.
Dr. Balis: I'm always here for you, Sylvia. You know that.
Ms. Bows: Thank you Doctor. I'll see you next week. Goodbye.
Dr. Balis: Goodbye Sylvia. Take care of yourself and your babies.
Ms. Bows: I will Doctor.
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