"Aimee, don't shut down on us. This is the path to a better life."
Two men and one woman were sitting around a coffee table. James wore loose fitting Khakis and a tropical short sleeve shirt with tropical plant silhouettes. His elbows rested wide on his knees like a sportive man ready for a game of golf.
Victor's short hair stuck close to his head. His rimless glasses and office clothes looked work man like. His face was intently looking forward. The fingers were crossed in a fist with the index finger pointing forward in intellectual agitation.
Aimee had her arms wrapped around her knees leaning forward. She wore a knee length plus a few inches Jewish jeans skirt -- thick and chaste fabric. Her head was dropped to her chest. She was hiding from the two men and pulled into her own world. Trepidation and hesitation played out in the expressions of her face. A plain black fold over handbag lay next to her. The hand bag had creases from age.
A drawing of an abstract woman looking at herself in the mirror hung above them. It was drawn with big colorful brushstrokes. A box of handkerchief rested on the coffee table. A microwave hid behind the couch for Victor's rushed lunch breaks. A large bookshelf with aged book back's stood at the wall. Large books had clinical sounding names. Smaller more colorful books had names like 'the wounded child' and 'paint the rainbow pink.' The curious eye quickly picked out the telltale mammoth book: DSM-IV-TR. That means Diagnostic and Statistical Manual 4 -- Text Revision. The older three editions were right next to it.
"Aimee, you have been coming for a year now with your challenges to initiate romantic relationships. You have a successful career at a book publisher. You are in good health. Your parents love you. The piece that is missing in your life is an intimate relationship. We have come as far as we could by talking. As a therapist, I cannot touch you without losing my license. However, to see any progress, we have to move into the practical realm."
"James has been a partner of my practice for many years. We have successfully helped many women to open up their erotic and sexual side. It is very wonderful to discover once erotic dimension. The world becomes alive. A good sex life affects your whole outlook and life, as well as how you approach work. There is a zest and extra vibrancy in the work of sexually alive people that sexually closed people struggle to gain in vain. Having a companion in your life will have many other positive aspects."
"I-I understand. I am a very hopeless case. Nobody at work ever asks me to go to lunch. I can't-can't control becoming tense, when men talk to me. I get this fear of falling. I fear that my muscles will fail. I may trip and fall, when they talk to me. Or, maybe that I will pee myself. And, then I get so focused on not falling and not peeing that I can't think of what to say. And, when I try to say 'hello,' my voice kind of disappears. I try to clear my throat. I try to blow air from my belly, but the voice stays weak. And, then I just walk away."
"Why don't you tell James about your recent success? You did manage to meet up with a man recently."
"Yes, Victor taught me this technique. When I get nervous, I imagine that my hands are warm. I am holding a warm cup of chocolate. My bones are hurting a bit from the heat. The heat spreads up my arms and through my whole body. And, I don't have to say anything. I just smile and project that warm feeling of holding a hot cup of chocolate."
"I did that technique last weekend at an Irish bar. A man approached me. He had curly, sweaty hair. He hovered a bit of a belly in front of him. He wore a suit that somehow looked sleazy like a homeless person. But, I didn't shut down with all the objections in my head. I kept smiling and projecting hot chocolate into his face. I imagined the hot chocolate warming him. He was a bit unsure for the first five minutes. However, he got over it and just kept talking without asking me questions or forcing me to speak."
"He walked me to his apartment. When I walked up the stairs, my thoughts revolted. I did not want him as a boy friend. However, Victor keeps saying that I find a fault with everyone. We did this exercise, where we browsed okcupid.com together. After I rejected the hundredth profile, I kind of realized that Victor had a point. So, I tried to stay open, as I walked up the stairs with this odd mustard yellow wall paint that I did not like at all."
"In his apartment, he pulled on my clothes and pushed his lips on me, I couldn't help but struggle against his advances. " You first," blurted over my lips. It was the first thing that I had said to the man. He quickly took off his clothes. I saw him naked. I saw all the hair, the belly, and the shriveled heap of skin that was his penis. All I could think about was that he probably missed a few spots during his shower in the morning. I felt disgusted looking at his penis. I ran. I might have forgotten to close the door after me."
"Aimee, that was very courageous of you. You got right up there to the edge of the diving board. Especially for someone suffering from such physical symptoms of anxiety, it is excellent to get this far. Victor is right that we can take it from here."
"With me, you get to push open the door of what you have gotten a glimpse off. In a safe and therapeutic environment, you can experience all the emotions and dynamics that hide behind that door. After the session, you can take all the experience that you gained and have a wonderful love life."
"James, what would a session with you be like."
"Most people expect from a sexual surrogate steamy sex. Actually, a lot of times, we simply cuddle. A lot of issues turn out to be really simple. There might be a hygiene issue, a really bad odor that blocks man. There might be some anatomy lessons. A lot of women are not familiar their own body. And, in a few cases, I actually have sex with the patient. These patients simply need the physical experience."
Victor looked at the alarm clock behind Aimee's head with the roman numerals: "Aimee, I am afraid that the time is up. So, I will only see you after you finished your sessions with James. I wish you the best of luck. You are in good hands. He has many years of experience and is very sensitive to individual needs."
Aimee stood up on her plain brown semi-high high heels with the big toe cover. She stepped toward the door with her gait wobbly from the commotion in her head. Her hand automatically flipped the light switch on the way out. The light switch signaled the next patient a green light to enter the therapy room.
Two days later at 2:55 PM. Aimee stood with her feet squared next to each other on the brown coated wooden patio. Her body was hefty, focused, and business like, as she is ready to go into a client office to present the paper choices at her publisher. She reached out her index finger. Her first joint of the fleshy finger buckled back almost ninety degrees. The door bell sounded a baritone dong. Behind her were the neat grassy front lawns of a residential neighborhood with low manicured bushes and young ornamental trees.
James welcomed her in with a warm smile. He was wearing loose drawstring pants and a white cotton shirt that had the top and bottom buttons undone to show a bit of skin. His hair was styled with product. Aimee followed him in awe. Her foot stepped wide over the door step. The heel hit at a very perpendicular angle.
The therapy room was adjacent to the backyard. The backyard was almost inside of the room. The floor to ceiling window and sliding door gave that illusion. A futon bed was the central focus of the room. James casually sent a fresh sheet flying across the bed. The soft brushed cotton invited snuggling into it.
"Had a messy session?" she said awkwardly trying to break her own tension. He was evidently very comfortable arranging the room for her.
"Oh, yes, she was a real squirter," answered James looking at her standing in the doorway before he focused back on the pillow that he Karate chopped to fluff up the feathers.
While Aimee waited without daring to step into the room, she looked around. The wall was painted in a soft designer green. Aboriginal fertility drawings filled the wall: big round circles for pregnant women and standing phallus symbols that towered three times higher than the people sketched with simple lines. A commode with peasant-style drawings of flowers had many little drawers. Tiny vials of scent therapy and incense sticks lay on top of the commode.
James slapped his hands together: "Why don't we dive right in. Let's see how you feel like in your underwear. When you take off your clothes, let's verbalize any thoughts that come to your mind." James sat down on the futon bed. His knees were high because of the low bed. His legs were spread wide. And, he rested back on his hands.
"I feel nervous. I feel very, very nervous."
Pressed exhales were punching through her tight lips.
"Okay, that's perfect. Let all the anxiety come up. Here in therapy, you have the perfect opportunity that nothing will happen. As you can experience more anxiety here, we can make you more comfortable about having anxiety out there."
"None of the therapy will take the anxiety away. It will always be with you. The difference is that you become okay with experiencing the pins and needles and can still act."
Aimee nodded with the intense agreement of a little girl daring to jump into the deep pool to make her daddy happy.
"Whatever you feel happening, let it happen. If you feel like screaming, scream. If you feel like hiding, hide. Try to almost overact your anxiety."
"I am falling. I am falling," stammered Aimee. All her muscles were tense. Her knees pointed in one direction and she looked like she was about to do an emergency crash during downhill skiing. James swiftly got to his feed, "I'll be there to catch you."
Redness crawled over her neck to form a red blotch. Her mouth remained closed, yet drew an exasperated expression. Her eyes turned darker.
"I didn't fall. I really thought, I'd fall. But, I didn't fall."
"Well, there you go, champ," said James with a big smile.
Her clam fingers squeezed the top bottom of her blouse to pop through the slit. The beige blouse had a square look to it. Her hefty body filled the fabric completely to the point, where the fabric was tight in places of extra fat.
"This blouse, I got at Banana Republic. It is very business focused, so that the male publishers respect me. It has a completely formal look."
Her hand continued to loosen her jeans skirt with very standard indigo and without any style elements. She kicked off her shoes.
"This skirt came from a closing sale at a mall department store. Many other women at the synagogue wear jeans skirts like this. They are very fun skirts without seeming promiscuous."
Aimee stood barefoot in her underwear in the room with James looking at her with focused eyes gliding from section to section on her body. Then, his eyes scanned her face. Her panties were skin toned briefs that covered the whole triangular area all the way over her hips. The bra was brown triangular. The shape was a plain round with much excess fabric to cover her whole upper torso.
"The underwear is a specially fabricated material that supports the body and is guaranteed to last extra long. The price was very good on these. They came through a mail order catalog. The box was completely nondescript. So, I didn't have to worry about the mail men."
"Very good, Aimee. We are in an intimate space now and you are still talking."
"Oh, I always like to talk about the bargain deal that I snap," laughed Aimee.
"We are here in therapy. Would it be okay to take things a notch up? There may be intense or unpleasant feelings that surface."
"Of course, I pay a lot of money and want to get my money's worth. Should I take off all my clothes?"
"No, I have something perhaps more emotional intense on my mind. Come here."
James walked her to the peasant drawer. His hands glided lovingly over the wood to admire the wood patterns and the blackened metal ornaments on the box. After taking a thought or two, he opened one of the drawers. The drawer was a five by five inch drawer. The contents were many thongs and bras. By the maze of strings and skinny material poking up to the surface, it was evident that they were all very skimpy.
His fingers pulled out a g-string with black lace and red ribbons running through it. The bra matched perfectly to create a forbidden Parisian ambiance. The lace texture of the combo was nearly complete opaque, yet the tiny little holes exposed what was beneath it at very close and focused look.
"Try these on and see how you feel. All of them are freshly laundered. This is where the clients get to experiment becoming different women. Perhaps, they always dreamed of a certain raciness or sophistication that they didn't dare claiming on their own."
"Oh, I can't take on those black and red pieces. They are too slutty."
"That's very interesting that you call them slutty. Has perhaps someone called you slutty? Or, perhaps somebody has been chastised in your presence as slutty?"
"Well... well," her mind scanned images of her work place. Everyone was very proper there. Then, an image of her school yard poked up. She was in a circle of girls intently listening to the leader girl. "In school, the other girls talked about slutty girls."
"Okay, that is pretty common. At an adolescent age, people try out different opinions. They sometimes carelessly throw an opinion out to experience the reaction of other people. Calling someone slutty is really an expression of someone being uncomfortable about intimacy and fun. By listening to those people, we can take on their blocks."
"Yes, that's right. Before my girl friends called girls slutty, I never found anything bad about dancing or laughing or playing dress up. After they started calling half the girls slutty, I felt very afraid of doing something wrong to fall out of the circle. I always felt watched. Even little unexpected noises startled me. And, emotionally I felt like someone was always grabbing me harshly by my upper arms ready to shake me."
"So, we have a block here. To overcome the block, let's re-phrase it. Your school yard girl friend would have called this a slutty thong. Let's take a closer look at it. It is also very playful with the ribbon interspersing through the lace. There is also a big hint of fantasy. Doesn't it remind you of Paris, the city of love and glamorous burlesque shows?"
"Yeah, I can see a pretty girl stepped down the stairs with elbow high satin gloves and a green glass of absinthe. A room of wealthy dressed man in suits and twirled mustaches awaits her."
"Wonderful, isn't it. Also, this bra is cut in a way to push the breasts into a sexual shape. Wouldn't it be wonderful to stop being a genderless person and become a beautiful woman? Those boobs are more than the pain of an annual doctor exam. They are meant to be sexy, beautiful, and stimulating."
"Okay, I will try it on."
She stepped into the attached bathroom and returned. Her body looked very sad in the sexy thong and bra, because her body posture rejected the vibe of the sexy lingerie. Instead, her body stood there like an unattractive mass. She stood there as she stood in front of a Power Point presentation about price points of paper, when everyone had dozed off already.
"Excellent, Aimee. You are very open minded. Take a look at yourself in the mirror."
Aimee stepped forward. She recognized the difference between her hefty body and models on magazine covers.
"I look bad. I look terrible. I look fat. I look like a wannabe."
Her cheeks were quivering. Her eyes turned glassy. James put his hand reassuringly on her shoulders.
"Aimee, what you see may be painful. However, it is important to not stop here. This is like opening the door to your sexuality a tiny gap. You can see inside. You can see how wonderful it would feel like to be a sexy woman. You have a strong longing to be fully inside, yet you realize that you are looking in from the outside. Many people stop at this point and get scared off for life. Let's take a step together inside of your sacred room of sexy."
"What you notice is that your body isn't in shape. We can't change that today. Only gym and regular workouts will do this. However, I will show you how the mere fact of working out makes you feel physical. Have a seat on the floor and do some sit-ups."
Aimee got on the floor. Her ample bare butt skin of the thong stuck to the freshly waxed bamboo floor. James sat on her feet. Then, she rolled over to do girl push-ups. They did jumping jacks. James encouraged her to swing her arms really playful and wide to avoid treating it as a robotic exercise. Her boobs jostled wildly. Her hair flew however each curl wanted to fly.
With a sheen of sweat, she stood again in front of the mirror. This time, her stance was active. Her muscles were slightly pumped. Her abdominal muscle even shimmered beneath her fat layer. She may have been a hefty woman. However, she looked sporty and accepting of the sexy, skimpy black and red Parisian lingerie on her body. She smiled satisfied at herself.
"Oh, I feel like some of the girls in high school that always smiled and played little games and brought exciting dresses to class."
"Isn't it nice? You are allowing yourself to be part of the in crowd."
"Let's take this can-do spirit and do a little game. Here in my hands are four dice. They have a wonderful red see-through to themselves. They should remind you of casinos, Las Vegas, and partying. Let's come up with some poses with those dice and I take photos with your iPhone."
"Okay, I don't know what kind of pose to do."
Aimee walked over to her purse on the floor. She bent over to reach down. The g-string disappeared almost completely in her big butt.
"Have a seat on the bed. Throw the dice and pretend that you just won at a really high stakes game, like you can buy yourself a Jaguar or house in Hawaii."
She crawled onto the bed. Sitting on her knees, she threw the dice on the mattress and opened her mouth wide, her eyes lit up, and her body jumped up like a sister that had been surprised by her little brother. James snapped a photo.
"Let's put a dice on your palm. Put the palm in front of your face and blow a kiss of luck on the dice. Try to be really seductively and sexy."
She did as she was told. The pretend play animated her whole being. Her puckered lips protruded. The color in her eyes showed. James snapped the next photo.
"James, let me put the dice between my boobs."
Her boobs very pressed together by the bra to create a deep long cleft. The four dice easily fit in a line between her breasts. James snapped a photo. Then, she rolled over and balanced them on a three dice high pile and one solitary pile on her butt. James snapped a photo as well.
"Okay, Aimee, we got some good glamour shots here. It's time to try out sexting. Sexting is sending sexy text messages. It's a totally safe way to get sexual, because you don't even have to be in the same room. Can you think of any man, whom you could send one of the photos right now?"
"Oh, boy. That is really dangerous!"
"Yes, life is dangerous. Let's embrace the danger as the exhilarating feeling that makes us feel alive. Pick a man."
"Okay," Aimee set up giddy on her knees rubbing her palms against her thighs, "George, the Mexican cleaning man in the office, he wouldn't mind. He barely speaks English, yet he always welcomes me warmly. He is a bit older. His face is scruffy, yet he is very friendly. He wouldn't mind."
"Done, he got the last two shots. I signed with hugs and kisses for you."