‘How are you feeling in general? ’ he asked.
by David Keig
‘Pretty good most of the time then I get these occasional black periods when nothing makes sense and I fear the worst’ I replied.
‘Hmm, any suicidal thoughts? ’ he asked thoughtfully as if embarrassed to ask the question.
I thought for a moment.
‘Well, not really. No, not really’ was all I could say.
He made some notes at this point.
‘And those times of feeling good’ he asked ‘what are they like? ’
‘Like the sun is shining and I feel on top of the world’.
‘But there’s no real reason for that? ’ he asked ‘you just feel good and that’s it? ’
‘Yeah’ I replied.
‘What about your libido? ’ he asked as if enquiring what brand of beer I liked.
‘Funnily that’s pretty good’ I said smiling.
‘Is there any guilt that you feel? ’ he probed.
‘Do you feel guilty when you feel good or see others around you far less well off than you are? ’
‘I guess I do. I feel bad that I can’t feel that good all the time and also sad for those worse than me’.
‘But not real guilt? ’
‘No. Not really’.
‘So you feel bad at times but not guilty? ’
‘Do you ever feel bad about not feeling guilty? ’
He knew I was lost at this point and changed tack.
‘When did you last masturbate? ’ he threw in.
‘Can’t remember’ I said startled.
He made some notes.
‘So, you feel guilty about masturbation? ’ he continued.
‘No, not at all’.
‘But you don’t remember when you last did it? ’ he said with a manner of distaste and disbelief.
At this point I did not know where all this was going.
‘Do you go to church? ’ he asked.
‘Why not? ’
‘Can’t see the point’
‘So why are you here? ’
At this point the confessional ended.
I had been diagnosed as not having enough guilt or grief or angst to be normal and no further help or counselling could be offered.
But, at long last, I felt truly guilty.
So, perhaps, I will find redemption one day.