By Eli Osei:
Red Flags with Mags:
An excerpt from Mags’ blog ‘Red Flags with Mags’, written by Mags of ‘Red Flags with Mags’.
A couple of weeks ago, I figured out how to use the Wordpress statistics feature, and it was incredibly revealing. It turns out that, on average, 0.5 people read each of my blog posts. So, in light of this shocking news, hey mother! Or should I say mot...? Don’t worry, ma, I’m not expecting a response, I know you read the last post.
There’s a lot to be said about therapy. Not much to say at therapy, but a lot to say about it. When I was twelve years old, none of my friends-- being twelve years old and all-- could afford therapy, so they came to me with their problems. Whilst I’m entirely sure this is why I now struggle with crippling depression, it also gives me unique insight into the minds of therapists everywhere (the Upper-East side). Wondering what your therapist had for lunch today? Trick question, they didn’t eat. Wondering what your therapist does in their free time? Ever heard of The Notebook? Wondering why you’re still reading this blog post? Consider therapy. I can’t think of a segue that screams ‘hey’ but that’s okay because no one reads these anyway! So without further ado, here are four therapy red flags that I've learned from personal experience.
1: Got a John?:
I used to date a therapist. Let’s call him “Johnny.” “Johnny” because that’s what his parents named him, but also because he just comes across like a “Johnny.” Now, Johnny and I had been going steady for about three months when, out of nowhere, he said “Mags, I think it’s time we stop seeing each other and start seeing each other.” Johnny thought I had ‘serious issues’ but promised that he could fix me. So we traded in love in the bed for love in the bed (but this time, it was actually the couch Johnny's patients lay on) instead and I only ever saw Johnny for our appointments on Thursdays at 2pm (Eastern Time, for all my international readers out there). Anyway, here’s where it gets bad. It was my third session with Johnny, and I was feeling pretty good because I was finally starting to get over my ex, Johnny. And then:
Johnny: What about your past lovers?
Me: Are any of them addicted to Temple Run as well?
Johnny: No, we’re moving on to an entirely new topic now, Mags.
Me: Oh, then what about them?
Johnny: Have you forgiven them all?
Me: Well, all except the one.
Johnny: And if Johnny was here, what would you say to him?
Me: I’d tell him that he was an arrogant little prick and a huge bratty di-
Johnny: Maggie, is Johnny in the room right now?
Johnny: We’re going to need a few more sessions
If your therapist is your ex-boyfriend who suggested you go to therapy, therapy being sit-down conversations in the same living room you used to watch ‘Lost’ reruns, red flag, red flag, red flag!
2: Therapy Txts:
After Johnny, I started seeing a woman named Johnnie. Johnnie was not a therapist, however, she too suggested I see one. So after Johnny (therapeutically-speaking) I began to see Fernando. Fernando was everything one looks for in a therapist. Ugly enough to not fall in love with, but aesthetically pleasing enough to not make me ill; the orphaned son of millionaires; not Batman; not Johnny; not Ben Affleck, who coincidentally is Batman; and a good listener. Things between Fernando and I were looking good until we began to WhatsApp:
Fernando: Hey, Mags! What’s up! Get it? What is up. WhatsApp. I think they call this a homophobe!
Fernando: Damn, autocorrect! Srry, Mags! Homophones, amirite?
Fernando: Get it?
Me: Hello Fernando.
Fernando: Mags! Soz about not emailing! I hear the kids are using Whatsapp these days.
Me: I am 31.
Fernando: No need to brag.
Fernando: N-E-Way how r u?
Fernando: Why u ghosted?
Fernando: Nm n u?
Fernando: U never ask about my life.
Fernando: Every time we meet it’s always Mags, Mags, Mags. Feel like I’m in a waiting room or a gun store. Is this South Carolina?
Fernando: U just use me.
Fernando: Who do I think I am?
Fernando: U* ^^
Fernando: Ugh* ^^^
Fernando: You have made this relationship far too personal.
Fernando: I am a professional.
Fernando: I have to block you.
Fernando: Plz still come to your session on Wednesday tho.
I did not go to my session that Wednesday. If your therapist can’t spell ‘sorry,’ then I am sorry… that’s a red flag.
3: Capturing the Details:
When I told Johnnie that I left Fernando, she left me. Life got pretty tough. Not even the silly little people on reality TV made me laugh anymore. Love Island? More like a burning hatred for absolutely everyone and everything Island, ha-ha. That’s when I decided it was time I stopped looking for happiness in other people and started finding it in more sustainable ways. So I turned to gambling. When that didn’t work out for me, I ended up on Lilly, a new therapist's, couch talking about my earliest memory. Lilly seemed to really care. The hour we spent together each week was wonderful. But at the end of every session something really strange would happen. I’d be like, “thanks for the sesh, Lilly.” And she’d be like, “I love your youth lingo, Mags.” And I’d be like, “thanks Lils, I’m just kicking it.” And she’d be like, “oh, kinda like the 2011-debuting, 4 season, American sitcom Kickin’ It?” And I’d be like, “sure, Lilly.” And she’d be like, “Mags.” And I’d be like, “Lilly?” And she’d be like, “Have you ever been stuck at home wondering why you have no friends? Well, boy do I have news for you! For just the small price of $14.99 you can join the regional capture crew today. Unlike most capturing crews we focus on flags and not people! Capture the Flag has never looked cooler. Phone your local flagger and get captured today.”
This happened five times before Lilly and I called it quits. Capture the flag? Major red flag.
4: Freudian Flags:
Look away, mom.
After Lilly, I felt pretty lost. Things that once made sense now brought in zero intellectual income. I bounced around between therapists for a while, but none of them truly tickled my emotional g-spot. Then one warm winter’s day I met Sig. Sig was the best parts of all my previous shrinks wrapped up into one hairy man roll with no man bun. And then one day, as I lay staring at his ceiling, Sig quietly said, “Mags, I’m calling the police.” So I sat up and was like, “???” And Sig said, “!!!” So I responded, “!?” And he retorted with, “?!?...” Fuck, I knew I had been bested. “I have to save your father,” said Sig, “You’re a bad man, Oedipus! A bad man,” he screamed. “You can’t keep getting away with this.” And then Sig ran out the door chanting, “Freud, Freud, Freud, Freud!”
I don’t want to kill my father or marry my mom, but if I ever see Sig again I would want a refund.
Men who dress like it’s 1928? The reddest flag of them all.
Time to Wrap it Up:
I’ve seen a lot of people. My optometrist says that my eyesight is outstanding. Frankly, I don’t see it. But I sure appreciate the sentiment. I’ve seen a lot of people, and if there’s one thing I can tell you it’s this: it simply is not worth it. Love and therapy are silly silly things. Who needs love when there are hot singles in my neighbourhood and therapy when we have Bojack. But fear not. Fear not, mom. We’ll get you those grandkids.