..a bit of fun
A make-believe therapy session that explores one possible framework for the understanding of the nature of co incidence as it applies to
the disorder of paranoia or paranoid delusion.
It is written based on the idea of what I, if I was employed to be a psycologist would be obliged based on what has been conveyed to me, to say to a client, about
the nature of reality and co incidence:
This following conversation never occured, and is theoretical. It has never taken place and no inferences that it has, are valid:
A make believe conversation between a therapist and client:
I walk down the street and think back to something that happenned that I don't want anyone to know, a person drops a folder on the footpath in front of me.
is this normal?
Therapist: yes it is.
(Therapist thinks, or says: I am legally obliged due to tell you, as a client, that according to the understanding and
theoretical acceptance of the level of co incidence in the country I live in, as has been conveyed to myself, that this is considered to be normal.
If I said anything else, it would be to imply that those
who decide such things have in certain ways misled me, and violated professional ethics in doing so.)
Therapist: your mind is picking out things. You are just focusing on events and fitting them to your preconceived
client: I see.
Therapist: do you accept this?
client: well that's up to me to decide.
Therapist: Yes it is. But I am obliged to tell you that this is the understanding of the psychology profession as regards the nature of co incidence, as far as I understand it.
(Therapist thinks or says: I
can say from personal experience that to disagree with this assessment results in very harsh judgements. I must now, as a therapist obeying what I understand to be the ethics code of the psychology profession: apply them to you. If I said anything else,
I would be fired or lose my job or accused of mental illness myself.)
(note: this would probably not be said to any client, but it is the true situation, as I have observed it in the country I live in,
Therapist: Do you understand now what is the cause of your assessment - about the folder?
Client: Yes, my brain is picking out things from the
environment to support its own beliefs.
Therapist: that's right.
Client: So the folder was just dropped, it has no relation to what I thought.
Therapist: how could it?
Therapist: So you must learn to apply this logic.
Your understanding of the
nature of co-incidence is wrong. It really is just co-incidence and coupled with a paranoid belief structure then naturally you are encouraged by your own preconceptions to interpret an event that had nothing to do with you, in a personal way. Your statment
also implies that you believe people can know what you think...
Client: I did not say that.
Therapist: you asked is it normal.
yes, that's all I asked.
therapist: yes it is normal.
Client: what if it happens frequently, is that still normal?
By the ethics and understandings that the profession of psychology has applied to me, I am bound to say that yes it is normal.
Client: So I must change my understandiing of the level at which co-incidence operates?
Therapist: I think it is one thing that the psycology profession would imply that you do by it's implied understandings of how co-incidence operates. (Therapist thinks or says: Implied being that if you were to say this
to any counsellor or person in the psychology field, it would be said that you were probably suffering from some sort of delusional disorder. In that sense, the understanding could be said to be implied.)
What if I don't believe it.
Therapist: you must change that belief.
Your belief is a result of your hidden view that people are really doing things in a way that cannot
Client: So you are saying I am nuts.
Therapist: Maybe you have a delusional disorder where you believe that others can know what you think. Why else would you
ask me is it normal.
Client: I don't think people can read my mind.
Therapist: Then why did you ask is it normal?
It just seems unnaturally co incidental.
Therapist: Co-incidences happen.
Client: They happen a lot.
Therapist: They do.
This is where you are making the mistake. You think they don't, but I am obliged to tell you that according to what I, as a therapist, practicing with all seriousness what has been conveyed to me about the beliefs of the profession of psychology, these things
are in fact normal:
You are walking down the street and you think back to something you do not want others to know and a person walking in front of you drops a folder. This is normal. The two events have no relationship.
It is your own thinking that is making the connection.
The reason you made the connection is that you have a paranoid delusional disorder.
Client: I don't agree.
Therapist: well, you 're not a psychologist.
Client: When I sit in a cafe and think back to something I don't want other people to know, someone drops their purse or breaks a tray
of glasses and they fall on the floor or coughs loudly or something like that happens.
Therapist: Your mind picks it out.
Client: Every time it is co-incidence?
Therapst: Yes, becuse you have an underlying belief that is paranoid delusion and because of this -
Client: What is paranoid delusion?
It's where you think people can read your mind.
Client; But I don't.
Therapist: I think you do, or why ask the question?
So I need to change my belief. This is causing me to pick out things from the environment that make me think that there is a connection between someone dropping a folder in front of me when I think back to something I don't want other people to know, and it
does not matter if this happens many many times, it is still to be understood as co- incidence.
Therapist: Yes, if you can do that, you will then not see the connection and will not interpret it that way. First
you must get rid of the idea that others are knowing what you think -
Client: But I don't think that.
Therapist: I think you are lying about that.
Client: That is quite hostile.
Therapist: It is good to be direct.
Client.. and anyway, to continue: you believe - I mean, you say that,
I must change my understanding of the nature of co-incidence also?
Therapist: Yes, because you appear reluctant to accept that co-incidences occur at the level that the psychology profession says it does.
Client: I never said that. I just asked you if it was normal.
Therapist: Yes it is normal. If you walk down the street and someone drops a folder when you think 'Oh golly I wish
the neighbour had not seen me walk along with that new hat that I bought to make a fool of him - ' and then someone in front of you drops a folder .... is this the sort of thing you mean...?
Therapist: .. and if this sort of thing happens a lot, when you think back to things you do not want others to know and people drop folders, glasses, their purses, or knock spoons or knives off the table in
Client: you seem remarkably well informed of my concerns...
Therapist: this is about you not me.
Therapist: ... then no matter how many times it happens, I am obliged, to tell you that according to what appears to be the understanding of such things in the psychological profession as I understand
them that: yes, what you are experiencing is to be understood by yourself as co-incidence.
Client: Thankyou, I will apply your procedures to my life.
Therapist: I hope
you find it makes a difference.
End of session.
Written by Katrina Wood