It's the second time someone has asked me if I've considered going to a shrink.
by Jane D.
A close friend, who I've been emailing and leaning on for advice on jobs, men, etc., finally emailed back and asked if I've considered psychotherapy.
I think she wanted to suggest it for a while, but one is always afraid of offending friends. In the past, I would have cut her off, like a loose string on a sweater – but, at the age of 32, I can't afford to live in limbo, fear, and uncertainty. I already walk around worried and fearful most of the time.
This is the second time someone has asked me if I've considered going to a shrink in the past two years, not counting the time the emotionally unavailable swimmer guy asked if I might be hypoglycemic. How fast my mood shifted when I didn't get what I wanted immediately, or eat something right away. And the anger rises when someone is nice to me, very nice, too nice; I turn away from it as if I were looking into the sun.
The pattern with men parallels the checkerboard of jobs. I am dating any and every man who asks me, without any thought, without any sense of self. I also crave the CIA covert-type men who seem ambivalent to intimacy. I think I can change them with kindness. Silly and stupid. Now I have another four dates this week.
I wrote a "thank you and yes please suggest the shrink" email to the friend this time around, but what I really wanted to tell her is that I also have ADD.
I'm not sure it matters, and I'm not sure why I'm so scared to tell others. No one knows. I hide it as if it were some ugly scar. What I really fear is that they will laugh, or moreover that the line between my problems and issues won't or ultimately cannot be defined as either fear, anxiety, or ADD.
In a moment of sadness, I walked to the church this morning on the way to work, stepped into the chapel—savoring the silence and the color of the stained glass windows—and prayed that some day my Facebook page will reflect, on the surface at least, the normalcy that others my age seem to have: husband, baby, a mortgage, and a stable job.
I've also been a lapse Catholic since being confirmed, but I wanted to prove, perhaps to myself, that I hadn't given up. After a good cry, I walked out into the bustling city, switched into the flip flops and sunglasses and walked to work, head high, chin up. It's a wonderful facade.