Tia was abruptly ordered to sit when she entered the shrink’s office. Dr. Kismet didn’t stand up or even greet her; she just looked at her over the top of her glasses and said “Sit down,” no “please”, not even a welcoming smile. Kismet read the case notes, with the air of someone who did not want to be disturbed. Not even daring to speak, Tia felt like a schoolgirl who had been sent to the headmistress for six full strokes of the cane.
Eventually, Kismet looked up. A petite but confident brunette, elegantly dressed in a gray business suit with a knee-length skirt, she presented a stark, harsh image to Tia. Nevertheless, there was something mesmeric and beautiful about her.
“You were referred to me by Dr. Everett,” the doctor said at last. “She says here that you are a sex addict. Is that correct?”
“Yes,” Tia confirmed.
Kismet stared at her for a long, uncomfortable time. Tia’s cheeks burned. It wasn’t simply that she was ashamed of her condition; it was the doctor’s icy, impassive stare. It seemed rude and invasive, as if she were undressing every aspect of her mind and body and looking at her darkest secrets with a magnifying glass.
“And yet you’re only seventeen?” the doctor asked, as if suggesting she were somehow dirty and repugnant.
“Yes,” said Tia, lowering her head, both as a gesture of passivity and also with the intention of covering her blushes.
The doctor read on.
“According to this, you have never actually had sexual congress,” said the doctor “You’re a virgin?”
The question felt more like an insult. Tia nodded shyly.
“I see,” said Kismet, continuing to read on “you masturbate. On average seven times a day, according to what you told Dr. Everett.”
The doctor put her file down neatly on the desk and walked around behind Tia’s seat.
“Do you feel dirty and shameful?” she asked.
Tia turned around and opened her mouth to retort. Doctor Kismet told her firmly to face the front and answer yes or no. She answered in the affirmative.
“Yes?” chided the doctor. “Yes what?”
“Excuse me?” Tia queried anxiously, turning in her chair.
“Don’t turn around. Yes, I feel . . .” Dr. Kismet prompted.
“Yes, I feel . . . dirty and – and shameful.” Tia managed.
The doctor congratulated her:
“Good!” She said simply. Not “Good! I know how hard that was for you”, just an economical (though ambiguous) “Good!”
Tia felt Kismet’s hair on her neck, leaning over her from behind.
“Would you like to tell me what you fantasize about?” she asked.
Tia blushed even deeper and lowered her head.
“It’s all in Dr. Ev—”
The doctor interrupted her coldly.
“Tell me what you fantasize about, during these seven-a-day masturbation sessions of yours,” she commanded.
Tia breathed in deeply to calm herself. The hairs on the back of her neck were standing on end and she was beginning to realize that coming here had been a bad idea. The relationship with her counselor was evidently not going to work.
“I’m sorry, Doctor, I have to go,” she said politely, placing her hands on the arms of the chair to raise herself out of it.
“You’re not going anywhere,” observed Kismet, confidently. “Sit down and answer my question, please.”
Tia sat involuntarily. She was taken aback by the word “please”. Steadying her nerves, she braced herself to answer the question.
“Face sitting,” she answered. She tried to let the word slip out matter-of-factly, as though it were as humdrum as the word “knitting”.
She sat facing forward, not daring to turn around. The shrink was silent. Was she even in the room?
Tia’s heart raced, but she calmed a little when at last she heard the doctor’s footsteps pacing the floor behind her.
“Face sitting?” Kismet mused. “Is that actually a word?”
“On the web search, it is,” Tia offered, meekly.
A hand came over her shoulder, holding a copy of the Webster’s dictionary.
“And what about in here?”
Tia flicked through.
“No,” she muttered at last.
“And what about you, are you a face sittee?” the doctor pressed.
Tia shook her head.
“What is the website called?” Kismet demanded.
“There’s a few of them: uh – butt munchers, ass . . .”
“So you’re a butt muncher?”
Tia bristled angrily at the intrusive and insulting nature of the question, but her will was already broken and she felt she had to nod anyway. The doctor was close now; she could smell her perfume strongly and hear the scratch of her pen on her notepad.
Dr. Kismet returned to her seat and sat daintily upon it. She leaned on her hands upon the desk, staring deep into Tia’s eyes. Tia became lost in the deep brown eyes that fixated her so icily. The doctor’s expression remained calm, commanding and unchanging until at last she raised an eyebrow.
“When did you first discover that you were a lesbian?” Kismet asked.