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A Story-Dialogue, Essay Example

Pages: 3

Words: 885

Essay

For the fifth day in a row, Jason came home from school at the end of the day without attending any of his extracurricular activities. His mother simply heard him come in, drop his books on the table, open the refrigerator, rustle around, and run upstairs into his room preceding the inevitable door slam. When she gently knocked on his door, for the fifth day in a row, he answered, “Leave me alone, please.” She persisted, opening the door slightly until she was able to see him stretched out on the bed, face down, looking as if he was trying to disappear. She sat down on the edge of the bed.

“Did you see her?” Mrs. Brady asked.

“What do you think? She’s in almost every one of my classes.”

“Is she in all of your activities too?” (No response)

It was so hard to watch him suffer. Mrs. Brady remembered all too well how her high school boyfriend dumped her for her best friend, how painful it was to set foot in the building where they all spent their weekdays, and now she was seeing her own beloved boy experience the same feeling of rejection. Too, Jason’s mother was acutely aware that her family did not manage disappointment or betrayal well; she must have been 13 or 14 years old the first time her mother literally dragged her to see a therapist because she discovered her daughter had been cutting herself on the arms. Eventually, she had worn her parents down and refused to go to counseling, and because they were anxious to maintain the peace, she succeeded in dropping out of treatment. The results had been nearly catastrophic for most of her teenage years; drugs, running away, truancy, she would not risk Jason sliding down that path.

“Jason, you have to let me help you. If you don’t want to talk to me about what’s going on in your head, you can talk to someone completely separate from your school, someone who will know how to help you get yourself out of this black hole you’ve been in.” Mrs. Brady put her hand on her son’s, patting him until he jerked his hand away angrily.

“I’m not going to see a shrink!” he yelled.

“Don’t think of it as a shrink. Just think of it as someone who might be able to be helpful, since obviously you’re not going to let any of us help you.” She continued, “All I ask is that you come with me. Once we get there, you don’t have to say a word, if you don’t want to.”

“No!”

“I’m not asking. I am not going to sit by and watch you sleep your days away, avoiding everyone, feeling sorry for yourself, and driving us all crazy because we can’t stand to see you like this.”

“So it’s all about you guys, YOU don’t want to feel bad, YOU are being driven crazy. Maybe I should just do you all a favor and disappear.”

“That’s it. If you don’t come along with me now, I’m going to call the crisis hotline, tell them you’re threatening to kill yourself and they’ll just take you in an ambulance. Take your pick.”

Jason got up and inched down the steps, out the front door, and waited by the car, muttering under his breath: “bitch.” It took all of Mrs. Brady’s strength not to respond by reaching out and smacking him. Mother and son took their places in the car, Mrs. Brady behind the wheel, and for a few minutes there was complete silence. She prays, please just let us get there without a disaster, since the last time she tried to take Jason for help, he jumped out of the car en route. This counselor has told her, “you just get him here, it’s my job to take over from that point.”

“I’m telling you right now, this is a bunch of bullshit,” Jason said. “If you think these quacks care about anything but making money you’re the one that needs to go on antidepressants and get therapy. This is just one big racket. They don’t care what happens to us, they just want to get that check. Nobody cares about anybody else. I’ve learned that over and over. It’s time you woke up from your dream state and got it too.”

“What on earth has made you so cynical about people?” asked Mrs. Brady, genuinely puzzled.

“What do you think? It’s easy when every single person you ever cared about takes advantage of you and treats you like garbage. I’d have to be a moron if I didn’t learn that lesson.”

“Who are you talking about? Your girlfriends? Your father and me? Your brothers? You have all these people who love you and you just don’t see it. You need help.”

“Right. And you’re just the person to point that out, aren’t you? With all your years of therapy. I’m getting out. We’re here. Park the car. And please don’t talk to me in the waiting room.”

Almost as soon as they entered the room, a tall young man with glasses and a goatee approached them, extending his hand. “Jason? Mrs. Brady? Pleasure. Please come into my office,” he said pleasantly, leading them down the long hallway. Jason rolled his eyes and stomped after him, leaving his mother to trail behind the two men, shoulders hunched, defeated.

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