Three Sessions with Dr. Denial
You: Hey Doc, I’ve got issues. I mean, I’m suffering emotionally and I need some help.
Dr. Denial: Ah yes, emotional issues, of course. I’ve got just the thing, a time-tested remedy called denial. It’s wonderful.
You: How is this denial prescription going to help me with my issues?
Dr. Denial: What issues? You don’t have issues.
You: But….I do.
Dr. Denial: Nah, it’s all other people. They are the problem, not you. Think about it. Did you ask for these issues?
You: Well, no…but…
Dr. Denial: Do you deserve them?
You: No way. Nobody deserves to suffer like this.
Dr. Denial: Then it has to be someone else! Don’t you get it? Why would you do all this to yourself?
You: I wouldn’t!
Dr. Denial: Right!
You: Strangely, I feel better.
Dr. Denial: You can pay the receptionist on the way out. Call me if you start to take responsibility again.
You: Doc, I don’t know how to say this, but I am really pissed off!
Dr. Denial: And you have a right to be.
You: It’s just all these people – my parents, wife, coworkers, neighbors, even my kids. I resent them so much for causing me so many problems and…
Dr. Denial: You can stop right there. I get it, believe me. This is actually a good sign. Congratulations! You’ve entered the next level of development along your personal growth path. It’s officially time to embrace blame, another wonderful little device that saves you a ton of hassle.
Dr. Denial: You see, once you realize that these people are the source of your problems, resentment is the natural result. It means you are finally seeing the truth.
You: The truth is pretty ugly!
Dr. Denial: Now you’re really getting it, my boy! Yes, it’s ugly, but we need to buck up and deal with it. It takes a mature person to handle the truth. Here’s a little trick that helps me: Whenever you feel resentful or burdened by other people, just realize that you are better than they are.
You: I’m better than others? Really?
Dr. Denial: Yes! You would never heap such misery upon yourself or anyone else, for that matter. We already know that. And here they are, spewing ugliness and causing you to be upset. Sometimes we have to tolerate stupidity, unfortunately.
You: Honestly, doc, I get upset and yell at people and cause them to be unhappy, too.
Dr. Denial: Of course! Who wouldn’t occasionally falter when dealing with idiots?
You: I almost hate to admit it, but you’re right. I don’t want to be a jerk. However, with these people, I can’t help it.
Dr. Denial: Yes, yes. Welcome to the club.
You: Alrighty then, I guess I just need to give myself a break and focus on my self-esteem as you suggest, given everything I am dealing with.
Dr. Denial: Feel better? Give me a jingle if things get overwhelming.
You: Doing better overall, Dr. D – really appreciate your advice. It’s opened a whole new world for me. I just have one final concern.
My friends and family appreciate me less and less, but it also bothers me less and less, honestly. I’m not even sure my marriage is going to work out. She just won’t listen to logic! Anyway, that’s neither here nor there. If she doesn’t get it, her loss!
The thing is, I feel like I am out of options. You know, stuck. How do I move my life forward with these people holding me back?
Dr. Denial: I am impressed. Most people don’t get this far, son. You’re ready for the ultimate insight.
You: Oh, good! I knew you’d have the answer.
Dr. Denial: Here it is: Blame God.
You: Blame God…
Dr Denial: Or the Universe, or whatever you want to call it. You can even get more concrete and blame society or the system or any outside circumstance, really. The point is, you need to shrug off the responsibility onto some force that is larger than you. Here’s the really exciting part: God won’t argue with you or try to put it in your face. It’s fool proof!
Dr. Denial: Yep, let that one soak in and you’re all set! You are a true victim, boy! That’s life.
You: Yeah, but what options does that leave me? I mean…
Dr. Denial: None! That’s the beauty of it. You’re a leaf blowing in the wind. So, enjoy the ride as much as possible. The key is to get as much temporary pleasure as you can. If it feels good, do it! Life is short, kid. Don’t let these idiots or even the Universe keep you from indulging yourself in a little pleasure along the way. It’s time to get yours!
You: Yes! I’m sick of all the crap! If I want something, I’m gonna take it! Who cares!
Dr. Denial: Bravo…!
You: My whole life I’ve been trying to live according to a stupid little value system and pleasing people all the time. All the pointless effort trying to do the right thing and think of others!
Dr. Denial: Screw ‘em! What about you?
You: With all I’ve had to put up with on this stupid little planet…I’d say it’s about time to indulge myself a little, yes. And when things go bad, at least I can take some small comfort in knowing it’s not my fault!
Dr. Denial: That’s the most you can hope for, really. So, don’t deny yourself any longer. What are you waiting for, anyway?
You: I really feel like I have come a long way. Thanks, Doc.
Dr. Denial: I’m always here when you need me.
Bundrant, M. (2013). Three Sessions with Dr. Denial. Psych Central. Retrieved on April 19, 2015, from http://blogs.psychcentral.com/nlp/2013/09/three-sessions-with-dr-denial/