I bumped into my therapist recently. (Several of you, who are under the entirely mistaken impression that I am pretty much stalking my therapist, will not be surprised, but I was). ‘Hello!’ I said delightedly. ‘How nice to see you.’
It was nice to see her. Or, it was at first. Talking to your therapist outside of a therapy session is a conversational minefield. I racked my brain for something interesting and innocuous to say.
‘So much rain,’ I began, inwardly cursing myself.
(My therapist is cool, and I want her to think I’m cool too. Not a socially inept idiot who is unable to hold a decent conversation. I want her to think that about her other clients). My therapist made some pleasant remark in return, but I wasn’t listening. I was running through potential talking topics:
1. How are you?
This was out. Far too prying and personal. She would hate that.
2. Have you had a good weekend?
What am I? Her acolyte? (I am, secretly, but I was trying to play it cool). Also, as with (1), this suggested a level of intrusive nosiness that she would not appreciate.
3. Of all the clients you might have bumped into, are you most pleased to have met me?
In the end I resorted to what I usually do, and endlessly monologued about my own life. But whereas in sessions, I occasionally touch on something actually worth discussing, I was keen that my therapist did not feel that she had been conned into giving me a free session. So I talked exclusively and extensively about the most frivolous of topics.
And now, instead of thinking I’m cool, my therapist thinks I’m a self-obsessed idiot who cares disproportionately about trainer socks and Benetton adverts.