Results tagged “Counselling” from Sunday Sun Blog
I've spent most of the past two weeks in and out of hospital with the Son and Heir, who managed to break and dislocate his wrist when playing rugby. The first operation to repair the damage was unsuccessful, and several x-rays, manipulations, plaster casts of varying hues and operations later, it appears to be finally on the mend. When you're sat on a ward waiting for your son to wake up, there's not a huge amount to do, so I watched television.
Although some grasping corporate monster known as Patientline is happy to relieve its "customers" of exhorbitant sums of money so they may be allowed to watch television, on the Paediatrics Ward such a treat is free, so naturally I made full use of it as it offered not only terrestrial channels but also a variety of the, well, extra-terrestrial variety. Now you may already know this, but to me this was a revelation. Daytime television is AWFUL.
For a kick-off, those denizens of the advertising world appear to believe that the only people watching are simultaneously planning their funerals whilst worrying about how to consolidate their multitudinous loans into one easy monthly payment, something one might have imagined was mutually exclusive. These horrors, however, were as nothing to the programmes themselves. Far be it from me to blunder into the territory of my esteemed colleague Ian Robson, but I was absolutely astonished at the plethora of programmes on offer that puported to bring together warring couples and discuss their complex relationships. These programmes were more hypnotic than Harry the Hypnotist who has just won a prize at the Hypnotist College for Hypnotising. (Sorry, I think I must have inhaled a whiff of the general anaesthetic.)
Now we are all familiar, I think, with the habitues of Trisha, Jerry Springer and Jeremy Kyle but some of the couples on the American programmes were astonishing for their complete lack of inhibitions. They will say ANYTHING. A remarkable number of phrases occurred with depressing regularity, such as "he never listens to me," "she doesn't understand me" and "taking it up the butt". DNA results shows were a staple part of this kind of show, the host (or referee, take your pick) of the programme employing the same pause techniques as the judges of the X Factor.
Why don't these couples want to keep their private lives private? Is the lure of total humiliation on television too good an opportunity to miss? Surely not. Yet on they trot, sitting themselves down on a variety of uncomfortable looking chairs, ready to hurl abuse at one another as members of the audience applauds or jeer as the mood takes them. Has the concept of counselling passed these people by? Mind you, I tried relationship counselling once (I went on my own - says it all really) and it was rubbish. The counsellor clearly thought a session wasn't working unless at some point I burst into tears and seemed to believe that my being the middle daughter of three girls was somehow responsible for the breakdown of said relationship. When I ventured the possibility that an affair might have had some contribution to make, she loftily waved it away murmuring something about "not getting bogged down in the details". Pah.
When push comes to shove (I use the phrase advisedly) relationships break down for any number of reasons, top of which is usually either (a) one or both have lost interest in sex with the other, (b) one or both are in the throws of a mid-life crisis, manifesting itself in either wearing leather trousers or the purchase of a red sports car, (c) he won't empty the bin or (d), all of the above. However, much as I hate to say it, on the whole it was the men who didn't make much effort and the women who kept trying to keep things going, often in the face of sometimes insurmountable obstacles.
As my son came round from yet another general anaesthetic and I switched the TV off, I thought of Gloria Allred. I will remind you of her infinite wisdom. "The more I know about men, the more I like dogs."