This weekend had an odd experience for me, trusting myself, doubting myself, repeating in fun circles. Normally when I do tarot or astrology sessions with someone I’m not there to be a psychic. I’m not Madame Gazonga who tells you many mysteries. No, I’m there to help you out and I can’t help you if I’m playing a guessing game with you while you are amazed (or not) by my psychic powers, I prefer to be practical and useful. If you want insight to a relationship, tell me that, tell me a bit about it as I ask, don’t expect me to deal the cards and manage to pull everything out of the aether for you. It’s not that it is impossible, but if I’m spending all my time getting information from ‘out there’ I don’t have the time to help you here.
That said, sometimes you have to put a little psychic in your reading. I met up with a repeat client this weekend, and she knows my policy, yet when I sat down with her I had this strange urge and told her “I don’t want to know what the problem is, just give me feedback when I ask for it.” I then proceeded to do the type of reading I hate where I’m there just going by the cards, getting next to nothing back from her. I’m not watching her, not having her talk, it’s just me, the cards, and whatever lies between us. It was a relationship issue (in this case that actually was surprising, it’s always been career advice), so I talked about the nature of the relationship and the breakup, before even getting confirmation and once I covered the basics I got her to confirm and correct the reading, as a few interpretations were a touch off.
I continued and after a few cards of “I’m not sure what this means” I had a light bulb go off, and I looked at her. I decided to ask and say something I’d never consider bringing up in a tarot reading. I had a moment of ethical hesitation wondering if I was crossing a line. After that disclaimer I asked her “Do you think he’s sociopathic?” Now, I have some background in social work, and she has a psychology degree, so we both have a grounding in what sociopathy is in a technical sense, not media portrayals. Also, knowing what I do of her and her background, I knew she’d be able to work with the question, regardless of if I was right or not, I can’t think of another client I’d bring up such an impression so clearly with. I felt so incredibly awkward asking such a question, but she nodded and said not only did she suspect it, but the ex’s mother and friend had suspected that if not sociopathic, he lacked empathy, boundaries, and social mores.
The entire thing was surreal; here I was playing the psychic and giving out what seemed to be very sketchy and dangerous information. After we were done our session I mulled over what possessed me to act this way. It dawned on me: despite knowing the situation she was still attached, or charmed, by this guy, trying to paint him in the best light even after saying the hell he put her and his family through. Despite what she suspected, his family and friend suspected and having me psychically pull it from the cards, she still wanted to make him a good guy, or a tragic hero. If she had told me any of that before I brought it up, she could have easily discounted it later, used my foreknowledge to rationalize herself back to “It can’t be true, he really is a good guy.” What she needed to hear, was a completely cold and upfront assessment with no room for her to think I was feeding off of what she told me. She needed that out of left field confirmation about the danger she could be in, and she wouldn’t have had that same sense of truth and urgency without me pulling the story and information from nowhere. If I had not flat-out said it, without prompting, she wouldn’t have taken the seriousness of the issue to heart.
I’m just letting this serve to remind me to trust my instinct, and understand that sometimes people actually do need me to be more psychic and less consultant.
(Note: I’m not trying to attack sociopaths here, they’re not all “bad” people, but this situation and her state did not make her a good pairing with him.)