The Man in the Moon

. . . so, I don’t know why, I thought I’d give a mental health professional a try. Thank Christ the lunatic was as heavy-handed and blatant as he was, and I remain free and with a chance of being happy and healthy again. It wasn’t close, like by inches, but when you and a predator see one another and you live to tell the tale, that is as close as you ever want. Funny story, though.

His manipulation was immediate.

He showed me into his office and I paused, admiring his Scandinavian teak furniture and his chair, just looking around, right, checking out my surroundings, and before fifteen seconds had passed, this asshole had ordered me to sit on the couch twice, I guess he thought I wanted his chair or something.

It never changed, his attitude only got more imperious after everything I said. He didn’t let me finish a sentence and then told me everything about me based on what he never let me say in the first place. I got up to leave after ten minutes of this shit and he ordered me back to my chair, lectured me for fifteen more minutes and then he told me I should leave – his idea, right? Control freak, apparently a psychopath. The guy was so burnt out, it’s clear that he didn’t want any patients, or at least any that didn’t pass his litmus test of total dominance and abuse.

I am so regretting keeping it civil and shaking his fucking hand at the end, I wanted so bad to write him or something and retract it, but of course, fuck that and fuck him. I’ll just spend the rest of my life telling people about him and people like him. This really was a fork in the road sort of moment. I really did know that the world of normals had no chance of helping me, and now I’ve seen it firsthand, the abusive hand of therapy. I’m with the crazies now, call us what you will. That is what becomes of a good, but mutated idea like psychiatry in the warrior society, crazy-making specialists.

I think the point for folks in this group, is losing one’s mind is a problem, going crazy is a problem, but becoming a mental patient is a much worse problem. I keep looking for help and then backing away terrified, and this last year there have been close calls a few times, I’m lucky I haven’t managed to get myself an official diagnosis and a mittful of prescriptions. I haven’t gotten any help – but I’m not in the control of a bunch of folks crazier and more externalizing than I am, either. Net good, I think. I’m not feeling that much better, still nothing to look forward to, still the crying jags, and what about that? I kind of thought if I just let myself bawl for a year or two that would help, but the relief doesn’t seem to be forthcoming. I’ve intellectualized all my life, and now I’m feeling, a lot.

Please don’t tell me I have to do it all together.

Wait, that’s not funny!

The thing is, I started trying to find some help among the normals a year and a half ago. It took some doing, with help from a GP and a counsellor to make it happen, but all they wanted to do was have me stop smoking dope and take an antidepressant instead – the GPs didn’t want to think about interactions between their pill and marijuana. I could have told them I didn’t toke, but I had just had an adverse drug reaction, that for all I know was an interaction with marijuana, and I didn’t want to risk another either. That was why I was in trouble to a large degree in the first place. So, my weed, my honesty, my own gun-shyness about new drugs, blocked me being medicated, and also from being referred to a psychiatrist during the year and a half that I lost my family and I finally managed to negotiate this introduction to this therapist.

If you’re an addict, they don’t want to waste their time with you – so the offer was: tell us you’re clean, and then we’ll start the process – the year-long wait list for a therapist. I managed, with the help of a drug counsellor to convince my GP that if they could arrange for an evaluation, give me a date, I could plan to show up clean for the date – you know, when something else was going to happen, when I was going to have someone to talk to, then I’d pony up and live sober for a while, since it was a reasonable condition for therapy – just not for the frigging wait period, was my attitude. I was getting high when I couldn’t avoid suicidal thoughts, and I have been amazed myself that weed works for that in the very short term, but it has been working, even during times when I was sure nothing would. I think I am a rat in an electrified cage with a lever to push when the shocks come and I see the entire world of addiction therapy and rehab as offering only to take away the lever. So, my counsellor, the GP and I set it up, and I got a referral to a therapist (I don’t know his creds).

I thought they’d want me to clean up for some period, a month, but they called and set up an appointment a week away, and frankly – I just realized this in telling it – I forgot to clean up! I mean, they didn’t respond like I wanted, like I thought they wanted, call, tell me how long, negotiate a date, but when they didn’t, I admit now, I forgot the plan too. LOL.

Doesn’t matter, not to me. If it had been within the first few weeks of smoking withdrawal (weed’s the same as tobacco, two cranky weeks), as that date would have, I might have picked a fight with the bastard, it was probably a good thing I went in mellow, kept me outta jail. But that was the joke – cock-blocked for weed for a year and a half, lose everything – and then some authoritarian manipulative mandarin I would never spend a full hour with if he paid me, and I’m walking out ten minutes in! I was pissed for a day or two, then I thought of Man in the Moon, Andy Kaufman taking that trip to the psychic surgeon and realizing what a practical joke that was, and laughing at it, despite what it meant for his prognosis. This was very much like that, in his attitude, in mine – and in the chances of success.

And I’m almost at Andy’s level of perspective too, I can take the long view. I’m gonna try to enjoy the joke.

 

 

Jeff

September 15th., 2017

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11 thoughts on “The Man in the Moon

  1. Pamela Spiro Wagner September 15, 2017 / 11:19 pm

    Dear Jeff,

    Just listened to your amazing talk with Cortland then read this post…so much to say, and feeling helpless too because as an inveterate “helper” myself, i want to change things or help you to change things…but i can only change myself in the end. Right? Anyhow, one thing came up for me time again which was weed.

    You know, i dunno whether one can be addicted to a substance that helps you or not, but i have taken Ritalin for 40+ years, ostensibly and literally for narcolepsy but the last thing i would say is that it “just keeps me alert”. Hah! The ” side effects” have been life-changing, at times disturbingly so, but nevertheless i would never choose to go without, even though i do and have cut my dose way down from what i am prescribed. Then, there is my nominal psychiatrist whom i see via facetime so she can collect her bucks from me and i can collect my drugs to function better from her…a bit of manipukation i guess on both sides, since she does not NEED To see me monthly but refuses not to, and i acquiesce as i know how difficult it has been to find ant Vermont psychiatrist willing to prescribe Ritalin!!! Well, she warned me not to smoke dope as i had a bad reaction to it as a young person and ” might become psychotic again…” Luckily i paid her no mind ( but also dont tell her everything!) and after discussing it with people decided that i could both handle it and any very normal paranoia that arose. What a blessing! It helps me sleep, relax, even helps me feel creative and see the world in new ways! I think it is an amazing medication — the possibilities for weed have nit even begun to be explored by the socalled medical establishment largely because except for sales taxes they really cannot get rich from it. So i do not worry about your “dope habit” so much as any felt outside pressure to stop taking somethung that clearly helps you!!! ( when i was catatonic for a week they gave me iv ativan, but how much better a little weed early on might have been? !

    Anyhow, anyhow, it is so late that i cannot even remember all the things your talk with Cortland made me think of. I just want you to know that i am here for you and if you ever need someone to talk with in real time, i woukd send you my phone number… meanwhile i cannot email you as the only email address i have for you says “mcguire family”!

    Take care and stay in touch?

    Yours in the struggle,

    Pam Wagner

    Ps you are well shed of the asshole described in this post….but i totally get the recriminations that urge you to write him an explanatory note..i have done such things myself!

    Like

  2. Pamela Spiro Wagner September 15, 2017 / 11:22 pm

    You might want to look into marshall rosenbergs NVC or nonviolent communication as it is all about ,universal feelings and Unmet needs…which i could hear screaming out in your TTMO interview.

    Yours,

    Pam

    Like

  3. Jeff/neighsayer September 16, 2017 / 8:36 am

    Thanks for all of that, Pam, you are a friend. Uh, yeah, lost the email address along with everything else! Sometime when we’re both actually online at once I’ll give you the new one. I see it was fairly late last night, Tijuana time, I’ll have to get on around then tonight? 8 or 9:00 for you, 11 – 12:00 for me?

    And yes, I mean to look that NVC thing up. Weird thing, in this place I’m renting, my upstairs neighbors are a pair of girls, a couple, I don’t know, thirty-somethings, I guess, and one’s learning the harp while the other is a dope smoking, guitar playing type, with punk leanings, I guess, from the stickers on her guitar. So I was happy, exactly what I would have chosen from the neighbor catalogue, perfect! My sisters are gay also, feminist, I’m used to it, I like it, and my experience with a real girl’s girl in this marriage was horrible!

    Of course, I’m a dude and the demo I want my friends to come from are stressed out by dudes, straight dudes, so I feel like just talking to them is violent, sort of. I find myself trying to remember to stay a certain distance away, and stay passively seated, all of that . . . but I need some help with that, for sure.

    Like

  4. Jeff/neighsayer September 16, 2017 / 8:38 am

    LOL – I make no bones about my unmet needs, ya got that right.

    Like

  5. Pamela Spiro Wagner September 16, 2017 / 11:44 am

    Hey Jeff

    I think the thing is that you had unmet needs but no way to state what you needed in such a
    way that your needs were met– it is true that maybe your wife could never have met your needs at that time or before then — but thst does not mean those needs cannot be met. The beauty of NVC is that we all have the same needs and universal feelings and all unmet needs can and must be met to thrive in life…just cannot say how or who can help us meet any given need at any given time.

    It sounds like you recognized that your wife could not meet your needs to be heard and understood and held with empathy and this recognition has led you to a place of despair. But it could so easily have led to somewhere different. You see, just because one person cannot meet needs does not mean no one can.. it just meant that you needed to look beyond her for your assistance and needs being met. That could widen your world immensely not constrict it st all!

    No one is wrong about how they live. Their strategies chosen to fulfill their unmet needs are simply more or less effective and well-timed than others (or worse!) your wife and kids strategies differ from yours but not their needs and feelings — they just
    have learned to cope differently…

    Well theme today’s iPhones 2 cents but I dunno how much I l intended to say and how much has been edited and changed by yhe redirent genius spell check

    Liked by 1 person

    • Jeff/neighsayer September 19, 2017 / 6:10 pm

      first five minutes of NVC basics #1 and I see he’s come to the same large conclusions I have, wow. I shall continue watching this

      Like

    • Jeff/neighsayer September 19, 2017 / 6:35 pm

      wish Marshall would talk a little fuckin’ faster though, I’m losing attention between his words, he’s worse than Obama, fa crissake, LOL

      Like

    • Jeff/neighsayer September 20, 2017 / 2:29 pm

      Marshall and I are two of the blind men trying to describe the elephant. I mean it as a compliment to him (and myself, I guess) when I say, I think both he and I are at least standing at the correct elephant. Maybe I could go on with it – you know the story, right, blind men at an elephant describing it differently because they’re feeling different parts, tail as a rope, side as a wall, leg as a tree – and say Marshall is describing the sound, the language, while I am talking about the point of a tusk or something. Hey?

      Like

    • Jeff/neighsayer September 20, 2017 / 2:55 pm

      and he likes Alfie Kohn, he’s at the right elephant too!

      Like

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