Friday, 15 June 2012

So many words, so little real connection..

There's quite a big local cafe society here in leafy northwest london.  There's nothing better than having a latte whilst watching the world go by.  And that's what I like, just sitting with my latte, watching the world go by.  Time to think.  The problem arises when the "members" of our local cafe society engage in gossip.  And as I've discovered some not only engage in gossip, but love to create "insiders" and "outsiders".  Bitching among friends is one thing, when people can keep confidences. But when "gossip" becomes "currency" that's something else.

Take one person -X-, whom I became friendly with over a period of time.  Just as I was getting "comfortable", they begin to snipe at some of the other locals.  Telling me things that I didn't want to know about other people; and me being me, I told him so.  And then one day, as gossip does, - what comes around, goes around - from another I hear a bit of gossip about myself.  And there is only one place it could have come from.

You see, there's three cafes on my high street, and I don't always go to the same one; and the bit of gossip that got back to me, was that I had ceased going to the cafe that X goes to, "because my husband was jealous of our friendship".

Indeed, I was surprised on one occasion when I stopped at X's favoured cafe for a latte, that I was greeted by X, with a string of silly zappy comments, fit only for the playground.  I greeted all of these, with humour, thinking that X would "come to their senses", "grow up", and stop sulking, because that basically is what it is, grown-up passive aggressive sulking......  gosh did you see that pink pig fly by....

So I enquired of a mutual acquaintance why X was behaving in this way?  "Well", she said, "he thought you were "his" friend, and when he saw you at one of the other cafes, he felt you had deserted him".    How disappointed I feel in X whom I trusted and thought of as a friend, to discover that beneath his shell he was hiding a very controlling and territorial streak.

Ah..... but now I wonder if there isn't another element to this that mutual acquaintance is not aware of....  X had gossiped to me about so many people, that now he probably thinks that I have passed that on... no wonder I'm on the receiving end of a massive Arctic Sulk, little does he know me.  Which makes me wonder if he actually ever listened to a word I said, especially the one where I said that I didn't want to engage in gossip about people!!

Friday, 25 May 2012

The Talking Cure.............

The title of this blog is "a woman who wants to got to bed for a year: even a month will do", inspired by Sue Townsend's book which I am reading.  There is much of what she writes I identify with, and reading it makes me laugh at myself.  Not an easy thing to do. It's not easy to laugh at the self when the self is down, depressed and lonely, feeling as though there is a big hole in the self's life.  There, now I'm talking about myself in the third person.

The Doc prescribed counselling.  "We have an in-house Counsellor", she beamed.  "Not many practices are so lucky".  I thought so too at the time.  So she put in a request for counselling and then I got a letter and a date was set.  Oh, I really shouldn't have felt so optimistic.

Counsellor seemed empathetic, listened and we set up six future dates. All was tickety-boo, wasn't it? Someone to listen.....  On the second of those future dates, she cancelled and asked me to come in the following day.  Ok, no probs.  And in that session she reset the next date. So far so good.

Then a day before my next session she rang to say that there were two dates booked in my name.  Really? So we agreed on one of the dates.  So now used to my usual slot I got mixed up, there were two dates on the calendar and in my anxiety, I turned up late for my session.  Wrote her a note to explain and left it in reception.  The following Monday I get a letter from her saying that I have failed to attend two!!!  appointments and she is cancelling all further appointments and I will have to reapply!!!

When you are feeling depressed and fed-up, being dumped by your Counsellor is not a supportive experience.  So I went to see my Doctor again and explained and she did the necessary paperwork and I went back to see the Counsellor.  Five weeks later!!!  I should have known.

Told Counsellor that I felt that I had been dumped. She knew I was in need of support and there had been not a word from her, I had to chase her up and I was pissed off.  I also pointed out that the cock-up was probably her doing, (of course I didn't use that phrase) as she had made appointments, then reset them and probably not cancelled the double appointments, she had booked.  Well, talk about looking like you are sucking lemons.

So much for Counselling being a safe place to talk, and be honest.  Not much hope if the Counsellor cannot admit to having made a major error and wants to pass the buck to the client.  Not much hope when I have to challenge her on her mistakes which cost me time.

Wednesday, 25 April 2012

Once upon a time.......

The worst thing that can happen to anyone, but to a woman in particular, is to lose her best bitching buddy.

did I say lose? how I hate that euphemism.... like I mislaid her the way I do my keys....  no, she died.  That's right, died.  And with her died the one person I could bitch endlessly with and there was no fear of comeback; we kept each other's confidences.... we were the Cosa Nostra of bitching, we had our own code of silence. Omerta. 

And now all that's gone, in the wind.....  I talk to her... and have to imagine what she might say, but theres no substitute for the sound of the human voice.  We both came from dysfunctional families, her's I think a lot more dysfunk than mine, she wouldn't mind me saying that.  We both felt like outsiders, cuckoos' in the nest, different DNA, something not quite right.

So I thought....  well a blog can be a place to bitch, everybody's doing it....  so why not me?   And so it begins....