Session 103: The Conspiracist (Part I)

"So you believe in aliens?" I asked. I wanted to make sure that I was getting this right.

The teenage boy looked up at me with confidence. "Totally. I know it sounds crazy, but I can only tell you what I have experienced. You have to believe me! I have no reason to make any of this up."

"No, no, I understand," I replied. I didn't believe him. He appeared to be genuine in his claims, but I just could not completely agree with everything he was saying. I wanted to help him though. 

"My parents told me I need to see a therapist," he said. "You know how some people freak out when they are told they need to talk to a shrink or something? Not me. I'm not worried about it. Yeah, I mean, I'm different. I like aliens shows, I know the government is covering something up, and I experienced some things first hand. That shouldn't disqualify what I have to say, right?

This kid certainly had a passion for what he believed in. His parents had contacted me a few days ago, asking me about what I do. They were interested in finding some professional help for their son. I never claim to have all the answers for people. I often find that people usually know what to do deep down inside, they just need someone to bring it out of them - bring some sort of confirmation to what they are wrestling with and what direction to take. I wasn't sure what this kid was looking for though. Did he want me to rubber stamp his strange experiences for his parents? Did he want assurance that he was right? Did he want to ultimately convince me as well? All I could do was let him talk about it.

I leaned forward in my chair and shrugged my shoulders. "No, it doesn't disqualify what you have to say, but you do realize that what you are saying may be difficult for anyone to believe?"

"I guess," he answered. "But it would be great if people at least acknowledged what I had to say, even if they don't believe it. Most of the time people just laugh and think I'm insane. I can't change the fact that what happened to me felt very real. You don't have to believe me, just don't think that I like making this stuff up, or that I'm trying to cause unnecessary problems."

There was something about this kid that was different from your run-of-the-mill alien conspiracist. I couldn't put my finger on it.

"It's going to take time for people to listen and understand where you are coming from," I said. "A lot of people are not going to invest the time in something when they don't feel there is any value to them in it."

"My parents should at least take the time to listen," he replied. "They parents, after all. Only one person took the time to listen to me. He doesn't think I'm crazy. I don't know if he actually believed me or not, but he told me that what I experienced was real."

"I can't speak for your parents," I replied, "but I do know that they love you and want the best for you. Give them time. As you listen to them and understand their concerns, I'm sure they will listen and understand yours. I am glad that you found someone that was able to take the time to listen to you. I'm always here to talk about these things as well."

"Yeah, yeah, but you're paid to listen to me. You could care less about what I have to say. As long as my parent's check clears, right? 

"Well, I-"

"Whatever, I don't care," he said, cutting me off. "My parents didn't seem to care too much about the research results of a top scientist, but I'm sure they will be more open to a shrink that tries to mellow me out."

I leaned back in my chair and glanced at my watch. Time was up for this session. "I'm not here to make any hasty judgments, Weston. I'm willing to listen to what you have to say. I'm looking forward to meeting with you again next week."

Jonathan P. Jehle
Author of The Allegiance Series

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