Sundays and The Perfect Prostitute, Then and Now.

I used to spend my Sundays driving around in my 1991 SAAB, all over East Oakland and West Oakland, searching for prostitutes. I would listen to jazz music on my FM radio, drink cold beer and smoke cigarettes as I drove. I would drive around and around the ghetto, searching through various side streets and known hot spots, looking for that perfect prostitute. Often there would only be crack addicts and junkies standing there, waiting for someone to pick them up. But sometimes there would be a perfect prostitute standing there looking like she just walked right out of an amateur pornography film. These kinds of prostitutes would be gone in a second, picked up by the closest driver and highest bidder. You had to keep your eyes wide open as you drove because you never knew when one of these sexual fantasies made flesh would appear.

But they would often not appear and I would just drive around and around, in continual pursuit of satisfying my sexual yearnings. I would stop for lunch at a hole in the wall Mexican food spot in Fruitvale and eat a vegetarian burrito with lots of hot sauce and jalapeños. I would also eat a side of tortilla chips and quench my thirst with a tall Horchata. Then I would get back in my car, turn on the local jazz station, light a cigarette, open my sun roof and drive around and around.

Now, many years later and far away from Oakland, I spend my Sundays doing nothing. Sometimes I will spend the entire day slightly high, but not stoned. I will sit in my backyard and look at the plants and watch the various birds and bugs. I will draw, listen to music, take naps and not walk out the front door of my house. I prefer to spend my Sundays completely isolated from the outside world. Other than my dogs and my wife, I do not want to interact with anyone. I want to be free, I want to do what I want, I don’t want to be bothered. I have to spend my week interacting with other people, trapped by various obligations. On Sundays I want to be free. I want to stay home and forget about the outside world. I want to pretend that I live on my own planet far from any other humans. I want to spend the entire day sitting in my backyard garden surrounded by trees, ladybugs, flies, bees, uncut grass, plants and drink a few glasses of cold white wine while I watch the sun set. I want to remember those wonderful Sundays many years ago when I had no idea I would ever have my own house, backyard and a beautiful wife and would just drive around and around in search of a perfect prostitute.

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The PSYCHOtherapist. Conversation #44.

I feel psycho. Literally, like a madman.

Why?

I don’t know. I fell pissed off. I think some of it has to do with having everyone else’s crap dumped into me like some kind of recycling receptacle.

What are you recycling?

Other people’s misery, unhappiness, suffering, self-absorption. It is coming up in me now. This is a hazard of being a psychotherapist. It can turn a person into a PSYCHOtherapist.

So you think you are upset because everything that everyone paid a lot of money to dump into you all week is now coming out in you.

Yes! How could it not? To hell with this psychology profession. I am sorry. It is ultimately one big scam. It helps in the short rem but ultimately life is suffering and there is no getting out of that unless you want to destroy your ego and become a lobotomized Buddhist.

Lobotomized Buddhists are a lot happier than you.

Maybe. I don’t think so. I think they are just better at numbing themselves into some kind of satisfied submission. They just erase themselves in order to become happier. I’m not willing to do that. I want to fight the fight. I want to feel it all. I want to be human. Makes for a more interesting and well-rounded human being.

You really think you are interesting and well-rounded right now? Come on man. You are just a miserable bastard at the moment.

Maybe so. My job is making me psycho. Hour after hour. Day after day. Listening and engaging with others about their misery. Their problems. Their struggles. It is toxic just like bad air. They don’t teach you this in grad school. Being a psychotherapist exposes you to constant toxicity just like any other worker who is regularly exposed to toxic chemicals. A psychotherapist is just exposed to toxic negative energy. I am sick of it.

So why don’t you quit.

Because at this point I would probably be miserable no matter what I did.

Maybe. But it sounds like being a psychotherapist is really taking a toll on you.

It is. But just like a well paid whore, it is tough to get out of the business! I am my own boss. I make good money. I am able to buy myself things that I like to compensate for my misery. The American way! It would be hard to escape this business without a major lifestyle change.

Maybe you should try. This does not sound god for you.

I resent all these people who come to me with their problems. I resent that people even feel they need to see a therapist. These people who come to therapists are the ones who keep the profession going. Just like people who go to hookers keep the profession of prostitution going. It is these people who are willing to pay for services to deal with their messed up issues that enable the torment and suffering of therapists and hookers. And most therapists and hookers pretend like everything is fine because they want to get paid! Why can’t people figure out their own issues. Why can’t people just get it together. Everyone is so fucked up. I am going nuts. I feel like I am going PSYCHO. What shall I do? Maybe I will just pet my dogs. Talk to my dogs. I need to find a way out of this. Other people are sick and fucked up. They poison me with their sickness. I want out of this. This is a bad trip. But the money is so good and everyone respects me. Everyone looks to me for answers. Everyone sees me as such a wise human being. But what a price I pay. I am miserable. This is messed up. I feel poisoned. I need this negative energy out of me. I want to forget about ever being a psychotherapist. I need to just return to myself. Just let go. Just…..

Breathe man. Just breathe. Come on don’t lose it on me. Just calm down. I realize that you are in a tough situation but you took the day off. Just let that part of you go. That is what you have to do to earn a living but you don’t have to do it today. Just let it go for now. Come back to yourself. Do the things you like to do. Come back to you.

(Taking deep breaths. Many deep breaths). Yes ok. I feel crazy. I need to snap out of this. I’m going to draw for a while. The maid is here to clean my house. I need to go offer her some water or something. Thank her for cleaning my house and then pay her with the money that I have to sell my health and well being and peace of mind to be able…..

Hey. Hey. Hey. Come on man. Calm down. Knock it off. Everything is fine. Take a deep breath. Good. You are ok. Just coming down from a long and difficult week at work. Just let it go. Go for a walk. Listen to music. Meditate. Just chill out. You have the day off. Forget about being a psychotherapist for today.

Ok.

(To Be Continued)>