I called a therapist who had been recommended by my friend, Balance. She told me that Dr. Cass was excellent and specialized in relationship issues. I was hoping she could help me resolve my situation with my former chum, so I decided it was worth a shot. After enough planning to stage a military coup, we finally settled on a time that worked for all three of us for the appointment. Here, you can listen in on our session:
Dr. Cass: MOV, pleasure to meet you. And it is a pleasure to meet you as well, Excuses.
MOV: Thank you, Dr. Cass.
Dr. Cass: Now, MOV, I know we talked briefly on the phone and at our initial private consultation, but why don’t you fill us in on why Excuses is part of this meeting?
MOV: Well, honestly, she and I have had encounters in the past, and whenever I see her, she just complicates things.
Dr. Cass: And you, Excuses? How do you respond to that?
Excuses: MOV, I thought we were friends. I’m not really sure why you wanted this meeting, what I’m doing here, what the problem is.
MOV: I want you to be more responsible. I want you to be nicer to people, and treat them the way you would want to be treated. Because right now, the way you act towards others……… it’s just not acceptable.
Excuses: Well, I try to be nice to everyone, but lately it’s like, no one seems to want me around.
MOV: Yeah, duh. What do you expect? Frankly, Excuses, I’m surprised you even made it here today. What, is this like the 8th time we’ve had to reschedule?
Excuses: That’s not really fair. My car was broken, and then my dog was sick….
MOV: That’s exactly what I mean: you give your word on something, and then you try out wriggle out of it. What’s up with that? Do you know that people don’t even trust you anymore?
Excuses: What do you mean, they don’t trust me?
Dr. Cass: Yes, MOV, can you elaborate on that a bit?
MOV: Well, it’s to the point where people avoid you. They see you coming, and they cross the street to get out of your path. Teachers, especially, hate you. Back in school, any time homework was due, you conveniently “lost” it or “forgot” it…….. there was always something.
Excuses: I’m just really really busy. Like right now. Maybe I should just go. I’ve been swamped at work, so I have a lot of papers I should get caught up on.
MOV: Why don’t you consider this as sort of an “intervention” to put you back on the right track in your life. How many people do you alienate on a daily basis?!
Excuses: You know, I forgot to put money in my parking meter, I should run.
MOV: The office is on a residential street! There are no meters! Another example of your kooky behavior. Don’t you think people see right through you? Even my six-year-old wants nothing to do with you.
Excuses: Dr. Cass, do you have any Tylenol? I don’t feel good. I think I am coming down with something.
Dr. Cass: (gets up to find Tylenol) Here. Here you go. Have a sip of water too.
Excuses: Thank you.
Dr. Cass: Sure.
MOV: (mocking) Oh, poor me, I think I’m coming down with something.
Dr. Cass: I’m really sensing some hostility here. Excuses, would you care to respond?
Excuses: You know, traffic will be bad this time of day, and I have to be somewhere at 2:30, so I’d better get going.
Dr. Cass: What is going on with you two? What is really at the base of all this?
MOV: Here’s the deal, Dr. Cass: Excuses just seems to pop up right when I might have my hopes up about something, or if I am supposed to meet someone, or if I have something really important planned or if I’m relying on someone. I don’t know how to explain it. It’s just, whenever she’s around, things fall apart.
Excuses: You’re mean. Maybe people just don’t want to be around YOU.
MOV: Wow, I can’t believe you just said that. I’m “mean” just because I’m telling the truth? At least if I can’t do something, I just say “no” instead of leading people on with “sure, yeah, I’ll do it” and then later change my mind and leave them in a lurch.
Excuses: I just remembered that I need to pick up my dry cleaning and they close early on Tuesdays. I really have to get going.
MOV: That’s fine. I can’t say I’m surprised. Oh, and one more thing: you will NOT be invited to any more of my parties. You are the worst at parties, RSVP-ing yes and then at the last second not showing up. You really inconvenience a lot of people, and I’m sick of it!
Dr. Cass: Well, this was a very short session. Shall we reschedule?
MOV: I can do any day next week, after 1 PM.
Excuses: Oh, I’m taking a yoga class, and it is every day right at 1 PM. Sorry, that won’t work for me.
So there you have it. Another day ruined by my old archenemy, Excuses.
(“Ministry Of Vengeance”)