I see a therapist once a week. Hey, no one's perfect. We all have our issues.
Normally, there's one major topic I like to focus on: girls.
You see, I'm not the most social or outgoing person on the planet. There's a reason I'm in therapy.
I've never had a girlfriend, and I've been on this Earth twenty-four years now. For a long time, I lacked the suave and the confidence to ask a girl out in person. In the past, it didn't bother me, as I would escape through video games or some other obsession to avoid thinking about it.
One day last year, though, I decided to face my demons. I knew I was lonely. And I wasn't just after sex. I desired true companionship, not quite love, but at the same time something beyond merely friendship.
So I ventured into the entirely new world of online dating. I figured it would be easier for me, because I don't normally approach women in real life.
Now, I'd made similar attempts at online dating before but hadn't followed up on it. But this time was different. I was determined to make headway in my search. Now that I had a steady new job that paid decently, I even started using pay sites.
I searched and searched and searched, but with little success. Oh, it wasn't for a lack of attractive girls. There was no shortage of that.
I was constantly getting rejected. I posted the best pictures I could find. I filled in my profile religiously, while still leaving some detail to the imagination.
But almost no one was interested. They would read my message, view my profile and move on, without a word said.
I was sick of this. When I started seeing a new therapist a few months ago, I told him out how frustrated I was. I never considered myself a bad looking guy, but why else were most (not all) of these pretty girls ignoring me?
I would show him pictures of the girls I was interested in. I guess it was only a matter of time before he decided to be truly honest and say what was on his mind.
Last week, he did just that. "These girls you like look like models," he told me. I can't recall word for word what he said next; it's all a blur. But he got his point across: these girls were out of my league.
I countered by telling him I didn't think so, and that besides, every person deserves to be with someone he or she is attracted to. Why should I settle for someone I don't find attractive? It made no sense to me.
Still, he suggested I lower my sights and aim for plain or slightly overweight girls instead. The girls I liked, he told me, were simply out of my league physically.
A few more minutes of this kind of talk flew by and I was no longer annoyed. I was incensed. "I'm just being honest," he said.
"Don't you realize that looks are almost completely subjective?" I asked fiercely. "Plenty of people have called me handsome. Heck, I know I'm no "ten", but I'm certainly not ugly! I don't have the muscular frame, but I have broad shoulders, good height, and at least a decent looking face to go along with it." I paused. " I'm not looking for a model, but I deserve someone I'm at least mildly attracted to, right?"
My therapist just sat there, smirking. "You told me your old therapist found you handsome? Was this therapist male or female?"
I stared at him. What did that have to do with anything? And why was he smiling like an idiot?
There was no angry, noisy departure from his office. We simply switched subjects and moved on.
But this entire weekend, I haven't been able to get this out of my head. I can't stop thinking about what he said. And what he told me only added to one of my longest standing insecurities: my looks.
Maybe he was right, I thought with a shudder. Maybe I'm aiming too high for someone who is apparently just average looking, or at worst "ugly".
I decided to sleep on it.
And sleep on it I did. By Monday morning, I'd decided that I was going to switch therapists.
I need someone who can tell me the sky is the limit. What I don't need is someone telling me all the things I CAN'T do, or that I'm not talented/good-looking/skilled enough for something.
Now, I'm not saying I want my therapist to lie to me. Far from it. But what my therapist said wasn't him being "honest". What he said was rude and unprofessional. I'm not paying him to treat me like that.
After all, looks are very subjective. Personally, I've been called everything from ugly to "hot" or even "sexy". Why should I listen to one man's opinion of where I stand in the looks department? It's ridiculous.
So to all those who have been called ugly or stupid or inept in their lives, but went on to prove their doubters wrong, I salute you. I appreciate you now more than ever.