I’m not ashamed to say I have a therapist. I lived in New York. They assign you one when you get your drivers license. Seriously. Okay, but they should. New Yorkers have issues. I have issues. And I have a therapist. I found him shortly after I met H. I had broken up with my prior shrink just before I met my future Fancy Husband, mostly because he kept pestering me about fixing him up with one of my friends. Anyway, I’m a big believer in therapy and I’m quite attached to this extremely Fancy, extremely Expensive therapist. When we moved to London, he referred me to an English colleague. The guy was nice enough, but I needed that New York sharpness. I want a shrink who says, “What the Fuck is wrong with you? Are you listening to yourself?!” Not the guy who says, “Oh, and how did that make you feel.” I need direction and applicable advice, not Freudian reflection. Anyway, I digress.
Back to my New York therapist. The deal we finally settled on was video chat. It usually works great, even with BT at the controls, and allows me to see him when he stands up and starts shouting at me. We usually meet monthly but have doubled our sessions the last couple of months because “he’s concerned” for me. (Or he needs a new sailboat and I’m paying for it. One of the two) I’ve been going through a bit of a rough patch since the girls were born. It turns out that when you marry a Fancy Husband, you make “a deal” that his Fancy Job comes first and your new job is to manage his Fancy Home, Fancy Children and your Fancy Self.
Now, if I’d grown up Amish, this wouldn’t be difficult to swallow. However, it seems like I went to sleep in the 21st century, with letters and degrees behind my name, and woke up in an actual episode of Mad Men. All I need is a martini at breakfast and some very pointy bras. My therapist has been working hard to help me merge my feminist self with my new 1950’s housewife role. And I have to say, it’s good that we’ve upped our sessions. Take, for example, what happened last weekend, when all FIVE of my nannies and babysitters were sick/out of town/busy.
The conversation went like this:
“Do you think maybe Sunday I could sleep in?” I asked, half joking.
“I have calls! I have work! What do you think pays for this house?”
“Um, could I go to the gym for 45 minutes maybe?”
“And when, I ask you,” H replied in annoyed tone, “am I supposed to read the 150 pages I need to get through before my calls? I have work to do.”
And here is where I bit my tongue. And I held my teeth firmly there the next day when my darling Fancy Man slept until half past twelve. I didn’t shower. I didn’t get to the gym. But I also didn’t scream, shout or stab anyone with a fork.
And this is why I have a Fancy Therapist. We reflect on where I went wrong in my approach and how to better get what I want and need (a shower! An hour alone!) the next time this happens. He helps me see the world from H’s perspective. I do love my husband and he does work awfully hard. But it’s also hard work learning to be an effective Fancy Wife. And $800 for 45 minutes seems like nothing compared to the alternative, don’t you think?