Transcript of 5th Session between Charles Balis, M.D. and Mr. Jesse Trent, Monday, November 24, 1997 at 2:00 pm.

Dr. Balis: Hello, Jesse. Come in and have a seat.
Mr. Trent: I always do, Doc. So how are you feeling this week, Doctor Balis?
Dr. Balis: I'm doing well, Jesse. How are you?
Mr. Trent: I'm pretty good right now. However, ask me the same question some time tomorrow, and I might answer differently!
Dr. Balis: Oh, yes. Your in-laws are arriving tomorrow, aren't they?
Mr. Trent: Yup. In just twenty short hours, my torture for the holiday begins! Actually, I'm looking forward to seeing Max and Sammy. Maddie is a nervous wreck, though.
Dr. Balis: I see. She is also feeling anxiety over the visit then?
Mr. Trent: Oh, yeah. She's starting to put on a bit of weight, and she's afraid her mom will put two and two together. And, by the way, Maddie told me to thank you for the information you gave us. It was a big help!
Dr. Balis: I'm glad to hear that, Jesse. Have you scheduled an appointment with her OB doctor yet?
Mr. Trent: We already talked to him. After our last session, I went straight home. I called my boss and told him I couldn't make it in. He's really great about things like that--that's very rare in most businesses. So, I went home and looked at the Web page you gave me. When Maddie came home, I sat her down and talked to her about the paternity testing. She was amazed that they could do it with the baby still in the womb! She hugged me for a long time after she read the pages. It really put her mind at ease knowing she could find out before the baby is born.
Dr. Balis: I'm very glad, Jesse. This is a difficult decision for anyone to make, and it helps to have as much information as you can get. Now, you said you talked to her doctor?
Mr. Trent: Yeah. She called him the next day. Maddie didn't want to say too much to the nurse about her situation, so she just said it was critical that we talk to him as soon as possible. They told us we could come in Wednesday evening. She hadn't really told him about the rape, so that was a bit of a shock for him. We told him that we had concerns about the baby not being mine. He was so understanding--another great relief. We had printed out the Web pages you gave us and showed them to him. He was, of course, familiar with the procedures. He told us it would be best for Maddie--and possibly the baby--if we waited until her sixteenth week. But he could do the procedure as soon as possible if we want. He also told us about how very few rapes end in pregnancy.
Dr. Balis: That's very good, and having an understanding doctor will help quite a bit. What have you and Maddie decided? Are you going to do the procedure right away?
Mr. Trent: Well, since the odds of the baby being the rapist's are small, Maddie doesn't want to chance hurting the baby. However, her sixteenth week is around Christmas. So after talking about it some more with the her doctor, Maddie has decided to wait until the first week of January to have the Amnio done. They did an ultrasound to confirm how far along she was. Maddie got kind of emotional seeing the baby. She's very torn about what to do.
Dr. Balis: That's understandable. Seeing the fetus makes the situation much more real. For many women, real attachment to the baby begins with an ultrasound. How did you feel about seeing the fetus, Jesse?
Mr. Trent: It's awe inspiring, that's for sure. To see a little person inside of just can't help feeling excited. It pissed me off though to have that nagging fear in the back of my mind. You know, what if it's not mine? I'm just praying that it is. I'm so afraid that Maddie will pull away again if it's not.
Dr. Balis: That's a very valid fear, Jesse. Try to stay realistic, but be hopeful, too. Take this time before the Amnio to work on building a solid foundation for you and Maddie. That may help soften the blow if the child is not yours.
Mr. Trent: I'm working on that, believe me. Maddie and I have been getting closer over the last week. We have talked quite a bit about things. Oh, and I'm such a dork! I asked Maddie about her "meetings"--when I followed her to that one woman's house, remember? Oh my gosh, I can be so paranoid sometimes! Well, at first she was mad that I had followed her, but then she realized I was just worried. Remember when I made the crack that they "weren't there for a quilting bee?" I was wrong! The woman who's house they went to is a seamstress. She had been telling everyone in the support group how relaxing and therapeutic quilting and sewing was! She invited everyone who wanted to try it to come to her house for sewing lessons!
Dr. Balis: Oh my! Well, hobbies can really help take the mind off of things for awhile. Why didn't the counselor you talked to tell you about this?
Mr. Trent: Probably because I didn't tell her I'd followed Maddie. I just asked if it was normal for the women to form outside groups. I probably threw her for a loop with my phone call anyway. Maddie was never much interested in sewing or anything like that, but she showed me the quilt she's working on. It's very good. She laughed at me for a long time for overreacting. She didn't say anything about it, because she thought I would think she was silly! I think it's neat, though. I plan to buy her a sewing machine for Christmas to show her how much I do support her.
Dr. Balis: Wonderful. I'm glad that turned out to be nothing. Do you still feel that her support group was causing her to pull away from you?
Mr. Trent: Well, a little bit. But that's because Maddie said that there's a lot of man-hating going on. Maddie did say that the one that does the most spouting about men is a lesbian. Not that I have anything against lesbians, but most don't seem to have any use for men anyway. She was the one that got in my face about staying out of things that don't concern me.
Dr. Balis: Do you think that Maddie will be able to resist feeling resentment towards you now that you have bridged the gap?
Mr. Trent: I hope so. We talked a lot about what happened. Most of what she was feeling came from the fact that I couldn't be there for her right away. While I was catching a flight back to San Francisco, she had to be all alone with all those doctors and police. It was traumatic enough without being probed and prodded and questioned. To have to do it on her own...I guess I just didn't think about it that way. When I got back, she was sedated and sleeping. I can be really clueless sometimes!
Dr. Balis: I'm glad you're gaining perceptive on the situation, Jesse. It'll help a lot to keep your marriage on track. You said that things are going very well now. Are they?
Mr. Trent: For the most part they are. Maddie still kind of jumps when I touch her. She's fine if she initiates the touching--hugs, little kisses, shoulder rubs. But if I come up to her, she kind of freezes for a moment. But I guess that goes back to the trust and power thing. So I blow her a lot of kisses from across the room and make it known that whenever she needs a hug, I'm more than willing.
Dr. Balis: That's a good attitude, Jesse. It can be frustrating, but just remember not to take it personally. When she initiates the touching, it probably gives her more feeling of control in the situation. However, it does sound as if she's letting her guard down some. That's a good step towards healing. Has she initiated any sexual contact at all?
Mr. Trent: Hmm. Almost, but she stopped it. She was sitting on my lap Saturday evening, letting me stroke her hair. Then, she started kissing me, and it began to get a bit intense. We laid on the couch and kissed for a long time. Then, I guess I got caught up and my bad little hands started stroking her breast and moving to other unmentionable areas. She just stopped. She started crying and said she was sorry--she just couldn't do it yet. She took off to the bedroom. I let her be alone for a few minutes, and then I told her that it was okay. I let her know that I was in no hurry and was happy just to hold her in my arms. She said she felt bad getting me all excited and then cutting me off. I told her it was no big deal--I had two hands and could take care of myself. That made her laugh, though I think she still felt guilty.
Dr. Balis: It's important not to pressure her. However, her feelings of guilt are very normal. She loves you, but she's unable to give you what she thinks you want just yet. It may be best if you let her control the encounters. She will let you know when she's ready.
Mr. Trent: Like I said, I have two hands and am more than willing to give her the space and time she needs! I just wish she would understand that I don't want her to do anything she isn't comfortable with. I get the feeling she thinks I say things like that just to make her feel better. But I really do mean it. As long as I have her back as my friend, and as long as she knows I am her friend, that's all I need right now. I don't need her to show me her love through sex. And honestly, I think sex right now would just get in the way of us working on that foundation you were talking about.
Dr. Balis: Hmm.
Mr. Trent: Maddie is excellent at turning conversation, so I wrote her a letter explaining how I felt. A letter is something which she can't change--change the direction of the content, I mean. I have the letter with me, do you want to see it?
Dr. Balis: If that is what you really want.
Mr. Trent: Thanks, Doctor Balis. I'd like your feedback. With Maddie's feelings being so sensitive, and with us just now making progress, I would hate to do this just to find out I said something wrong in the letter!
Dr. Balis: Just wait while I read it. Your letter is written from the heart. I think Maddie will be able to see that.
Mr. Trent: Thanks, Doc.
Dr. Balis: No problem, Jesse. Our time is up for today. Good luck with your relatives and try to have a good Thanksgiving.
Mr. Trent: I will. I feel like I have a lot to be thankful for. And even more, if I don't kill anyone this week. Just joking!
Dr. Balis: See you next week, Jesse?
Mr. Trent: Same neurotic time, same neurotic channel, Doc! You have a good turkey day, too. Bye!

Draft of Mr. Jesse Trent's Letter to Ms. Madilyn Trent, Monday, November 24, 1997.

Dear Madilyn,

I am writing this letter to you because I want to make a few things clear, and you know better than anyone my propensity for sticking my foot in my mouth. First off I want you to know how very much I love you. But those are just words, and words could not describe the depth of the love I feel for you. You are my pride, my joy, my life, my soul mate and my best friend. The love I have for you is something that most go through their whole lives dreaming about, but never get close to. You are what makes my life whole, and nothing will ever change that. NOTHING.

I know the past few months have been very hard for you. And whereas it might be true that I can never fully understand what you went through, I am here for you. You are not alone. First and foremost, I want to be a friend to you. I want to be someone you feel you can count on, someone you can talk to and confide in. I want you to know that you never have to be afraid to talk to me. I will never belittle you, laugh at you, or betray you. You are my very best friend, Maddie, and I want to be the same to you. We have supported each other through so much, and I do not want to see that change now.

Lastly, I want you to know how good it feels to have you in my arms again. I feel so safe and content when I am holding you. And please believe me when I say that that is more than enough for me right now. You know I am not the kind of guy that expresses love through sex. The two go hand in hand nicely, but one does not necessarily mean the other. I am so sorry if I pressured you last Saturday. That was not my intention. I got caught up in the moment. I have missed you so much over the last few months. However, I am content to wait as long as you need. You have no need to feel any guilt because you are not ready. I do understand. YOU are what is important to me. Ten minutes of selfish pleasure means nothing compared to the hours I spend holding you in my arms, talking, laughing, dreaming, planning. All I want is for you to feel safe, and happy, and I will do anything in my power to see that you are. I love you more than words can convey, forever.


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