Part 28 Dr. Styles

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"IT'S BEEN SOME TIME, MAYBE FIVE MONTHS?" Dr. Styles asks while digging through a pile of paper on his desk. "What brings you back?"

"My aunt's concern for me—things getting out of control again. Thank you for seeing me on such short notice."

Dr. Styles peruses his notes. His thick short wavy brown hair reminds me of my father's. "Sure. Okay, give me a minute Brenda... Okay, the last time we sat down together the dreams of your father were subsiding and you were happy where everything was in your life."

"I was. Yes, I was. But then I had an opportunity for a higher position with the company I work for, OC, and I didn't get the support from Freddy that I thought I would get."

"Freddy is the man you've been seeing at the company, correct?"

"Yes, my boss—well one of my bosses."

"Yes, and from what I remember we discussed how that wasn't a good idea, but you weren't concerned because your boss's arrangement was alright with you. So, something changed?"

Oh God. Hearing him repeat my words makes me feel foolish. I cannot believe I actually consented to be used. "Yes. As I mentioned, an opportunity came about for me and I presented it to Freddy and he dismissed the idea and sent me on my way."

"And that made you angry?"

"It spurred all this conflict inside of me and made me want so much more."

"What did you get instead?" He asks.

"Resistance. Heavy resistance. And then everything came crashing down."

"How so?"

"Dreams of my father and the night with Freddy in the bathroom came back. The whole sorted mess came crashing back in."

"The night in the bathroom you're referring to with Freddy is your suicide attempt, correct?"

My blood boils. "I don't recall it being a suicide attempt. We discussed this."

"Oh, yes, I'm sorry. You're right. This wasn't a suicide, you actually..." Dr. Styles flips through a few more pages. "You did this to release the pain you were feeling."

I grab a piece of hair and begin to twist it wildly.

"Why are you getting anxious?"

"Because I don't like that you referred to that night in the bathroom as a suicide attempt. I think the reason I'm so angry at my aunt and Freddy is that they worry I'm going to do it again; as if I was trying to kill myself or something. I wasn't trying to kill myself. I wasn't."

"I made a mistake and I'm sorry. There is plenty of research on this and I agree you were not trying to kill yourself."

I look away out the window of Dr. Style's modest office in the Valley. His words are not in the least calming me. "Anyway, all the concern is annoying. This is my life and the tragedy of my father's death is something none of them can understand."

"What do you mean?"

"I mean neither Freddy or Stacy understand what a huge blow it was to deal with—my father leaving me. He was my everything. He loved me very much. Something must have happened that he or my mother made up the story that he died. Because obviously, he didn't die. He was alive, living in the Valley the entire time I was growing up without him, and then he was murdered. All I keep thinking is that he died alone, without me. I can't get around that, I probably never will, and no one understands what that feels like. Everyone just wants me to skip through the tulips and be happy."

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