Transcript of 3rd Session between Charles Balis, M.D. and Mr. Jesse Trent, Monday, November 10, 1997 at 2:00 pm.

Dr. Balis: Hello, Jesse. How are you?
Mr. Trent: Hi, Doctor Balis. Same old, same old.
Dr. Balis: Have a seat. I take it things are not improving at home, Jesse?
Mr. Trent: I see why we pay you the big bucks, Doc! Just a joke. I don't get to do much joking lately, and since I get to bend your ear for an hour a week, I figure I can torture you with my humor.
Dr. Balis: Well, Jesse, that's all the time we have for today.
Mr. Trent: Doctor! Shame on you!
Dr. Balis: How are things, Jesse?
Mr. Trent: Okay. I guess I can't sit here and joke the whole hour, hmm? Maddie is still shutting me out. It's getting more difficult to deal with. The more time she spends with her support group, the more she seems to hate me.
Dr. Balis: How much time is she spending with her rape support group?
Mr. Trent: A couple of hours almost every other day. If she isn't at therapy or working late, she's with people from her support group. I just...I don't know. I'm glad Maddie is seeking help dealing with what's she is going through, but I...damn...I just can't understand why she won't lean on me for some support!
Dr. Balis: Rape is a very difficult trauma to get over, Jesse. Some find talking to others that have lived through it helpful. However, I do agree that she should also view you as a source of support. Why do you feel that the group is contributing to her negative attitude towards you?
Mr. Trent: Well, one day I went up to the Center to see if I could find Maddie. I wanted to try to talk to her and see what the Center was all about, you know? I thought I might even sit in on a session if they would let me. I don't know what made me think that!
Dr. Balis: What happened when you went to the Center?
Mr. Trent: Doctor Balis, the looks I got made me feel like I was a rapist! If looks could kill, I'm sure I would have been six feet under right now. And please, don't think I'm belittling the Center. I know they do great work and help plenty of women who need it. And I don't really think it's the counselors there either. The one I did talk to was very nice and helpful. The looks I got were from the women who were there for the group session. Maddie saw me and about had a cow right there on the spot! She was furious, accused me of following her. What crap! I tried to tell her that I just wanted to see her, but one of her support buddies came and dragged her off to the bathroom. Another one came up and told me I should just stay out of things that don't concern me! Can you believe that shit? Maddie is my concern!
Dr. Balis: Yes, Maddie is your concern. But many of these women are in terrible pain and find trusting anyone difficult. Plus, if Maddie has been venting her feelings about you in the group, that could have led to a bias against you. Did Maddie have anything to say to you about this incident later ?
Mr. Trent: She was pissed. She got home pretty late that night, but I waited up for her. She ignored me at first, slamming things around in the kitchen, being pissed off. I went in to try to talk to her, but all we did was argue. She said I had no business going to the Center to check up on her. I said that I was worried about her and that I was trying to help. She said she didn't need or want my help. That hurt me so badly. I just don't understand how we even got this bad, Doc. I finally just said that whatever she wanted was fine with me--trying to be the ever sensitive and understanding husband. Then I went to bed.
Dr. Balis: So you feel it's not the Center or the counselors but the other women in the group that are encouraging Maddie to shut you out?
Mr. Trent: Yeah, that's it exactly. I think that some of the women may have formed their own little group. After Maddie accused me of following her, I decided that maybe I should follow her. So the next night, I borrowed a friend's car and waited for her to go out. She ended up at some house. I sat outside for a little while, and then another car with three more women showed up, including the one that told me that Maddie was none of my concern.
Dr. Balis: And you feel they were having a private meeting of their own?
Mr. Trent: Well, I'm pretty sure they weren't there for a quilting bee, Doc!
Dr. Balis: What did you do?
Mr. Trent: I went back home and called the counselor I talked to the night before at the Center. I asked her if it was typical for the women in the groups to have outside meetings. She kind of dodged around that question, but eventually told me that it does sometimes happen, but the Center doesn't encourage it because there's no mediator present.
Dr. Balis: I would have to agree with that. It's good that the women have found a source of support in each other, but there's a lot of anger and feelings of powerlessness after a rape. Without mediation, there's a temptation for the women to feed off of each other's anger. Mediation is needed to help everyone keep their feelings in perspective. The energy from the anger can feel very powerful, but often ends up being more destructive in the end. Did you confront Maddie about the meeting?
Mr. Trent: No, I'm not totally stupid, Doctor. That would surely have been a suicide for my marriage. I just kept quiet. I wanted to get some perspective on the situation. I miss her so much, I can't even begin to tell you what it's like to watch her going through this. I love her with everything that I am, and I am not just saying that. I mean it. She is my whole life. I wish they would hurry up and catch this bastard.
Dr. Balis: Have the police made any progress?
Mr. Trent: Sort of. There was another rape in our apartment building. It happened last Monday night. Maddie freaked really bad when she heard about it. The police are beginning to think it's someone that lives in the building. It's a secured building, so no one can get in without a key. They are currently checking out everyone who has lived there in the last year. Hopefully, they'll catch this asshole soon before he can destroy more lives.
Dr. Balis: I hope their search turns up something. I think that Maddie will benefit greatly knowing that the man that raped her is behind bars. It may also turn her anger away from you and towards her rapist.
Mr. Trent: I hope you're right. I'm growing very tired of being the bad guy here. I'm worried about her though, Doc. She hasn't been eating very well. She's also getting sick a lot. I'm afraid she's picked up a few ulcers over this whole mess. I think she has a doctor's appointment tomorrow--there was a cryptic notation on the desk calendar. She's usually pretty good about taking care of herself.
Dr. Balis: She's under a lot of stress right now; I'm glad she's going to get a check up. Jesse, I'm curious about how you and Maddie had been getting along in the months prior to the rape. Were there any conflicts or problems that could also be contributing to Maddie's attitude towards you now?
Mr. Trent: Hmm. You know, I've been thinking about that a lot myself. We were doing fine for the most part. Adjusting to a new city can be exciting and frightening, as I'm sure you know. It was pretty cool, though. The night life here is great. Lots of great bands come here that never stopped in St. Louis. And Maddie loves the ocean, so that is great, too.
Dr. Balis: It sounds like you were having fun here. However, I sense that there was something going on with you and Maddie. Am I correct?
Mr. Trent: Right as rain again, Doc. You should get yourself a night job on the Psychic Friends Network!
Dr. Balis: I think I'll stick with my day job for now, but I'll keep it in mind. Now, tell me what was going on between you and Maddie.
Mr. Trent: Well, it was that old biological clock thing, Doc. Maddie will be twenty-six very soon. After we lost the first baby, we decided that Maddie should finish school and get her career going before we tried again. Now here we are--she finished school and has her career. And now she wants a baby.
Dr. Balis: And how did you feel about a baby?
Mr. Trent: I was all for the idea. I love kids! I sometimes act a lot like one, so I can relate on their level--just joking. I can't wait to be a father, but that doesn't change the fact that it just isn't that simple.
Dr. Balis: Were you having problems conceiving?
Mr. Trent: I don't know if "problem" is exactly the right word. We both went and had our physicals about eight months ago, just to make sure everything was in good working order, you know? We both got clean bills of health. But her eggs and my spermies just didn't seem to want to play with each other, though! We tried, and tried, and tried. Every month, another disappointing period showed up right on schedule. At first, it was kind of fun. I mean, what man is going to balk at sex every night? Then, Maddie heard that a lot of sex wasn't the way to go about it. So we tried having sex just around her ovulation time. Before I knew it, sex became almost like a chore or duty, and not just to me either. I'm pretty sure Maddie was feeling the same way. I even had some performance problems there towards the end. After five months of trying, Maddie was more frustrated than ever. And she was less than understanding about my problems. We finally decided to give up actively trying to have a baby. I figure if it's going to happen, it will. It happened once already, and we sure weren't trying then!
Dr. Balis: How did Maddie feel about giving up and letting nature take it course?
Mr. Trent: She wasn't thrilled, that's for sure. But there was nothing either of us could do really. Her mom is constantly bugging her for a grandchild. Like that old bat doesn't have three other grandchildren already.
Dr. Balis: Maddie is still really young and has plenty of childbearing years ahead of her. Trying to conceive can be very hard on a couple. What you and Maddie were going through is not rare at all. There are plenty of couples who are perfectly capable of conceiving and have problems doing so--and five months isn't even really long enough to call a problem yet. Do you remember the last time you and Maddie had a sexual encounter?
Mr. Trent: Doctor! I don't kiss and tell.
Dr. Balis: Jesse, if you do not want to tell me, that's perfectly fine.
Mr. Trent: Gee, Doc, I'm just teasing you! I know exactly when it was. It's etched in my mind, because I'm now afraid it was the very last time we will every make love! It was the morning that I left, the day before the rape. Maddie was trying to entice me to stay home with her. She said we could practice making babies. The thought of that did make it hard for me to leave! If only I had stayed home and practiced, I wouldn't be here right now!
Dr. Balis: You cannot beat yourself up over your decision, Jesse.
Mr. Trent: I know.
Dr. Balis: Jesse, our time is up. Same time next week?
Mr. Trent: Sounds good! I guess I'll scoot on over to the bookstore now. See you, Doc!
Dr. Balis: Goodbye, Jesse.
Arrow, Straight, Left, Earlier Arrow, Straight, Right, Later

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

Button to Jesse Trent's Transcripts Transcripts of Jesse Trent's Communications
Button to Madeline Trent's Patient File Madeline Trent's Patient File
Button to Jesse Trent's Patient File Jesse Trent's Patient File

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