Dejected to Connected

“I’m here because my wife sent me. She says I’m irritable.” Slumped in his chair, and dejected, Bill admits, “She’s sick, and demanding. I’m exhausted.” Recounting details of his wife going to the hospital with heart problems, and his picking up the responsibilities of the household chores, he admits he has become grumpy and withdrawn. He says he rarely leave the house, except to run errands for his wife. We discuss the goal of improving his mood, by increasing his activity level. He says he is willing to do out-of-session work. We review the rationale for his homework assignments. I pull an activity monitoring form from my office drawer. I hand him the therapy form to complete. While at home, Bill records his activities and rates his enjoyment from each activity. Next session, Bill smiles as he hands me his completed form: “I shared this form with my wife. She planned a train trip, a picnic, and family vacation for us.” Affectionately encouraged by his wife, he begins to plan to get out of house on his own. Four sessions later, I was pleased to hear Bill say, “I no longer need to see you. I have my life back.”

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