by P. Berman
I was a high performer this week. Why do I feel so sick?
Craig’s dad was very angry. He had heard about Craig’s performance at a meeting last week and had allowed himself a brief smile. He had called Craig up at the office to congratulate him but then he had gotten no answer; something was clearly wrong and needed to be straightened out. His son was not going to screw up yet another opportunity to show his superiority.
He felt a surge of anger when after calling his son’s home number, he heard his son say hello. “What are you doing at home on a Saturday! Three other men performed as well as you last week. How are you going to get ahead of them being this lazy!
Craig knew there was no point defending himself; no point saying all of them were going together to the ballgame. There was also no point mentioning how lonely he was and wanting to fit in with these other hard-working young men; it would just lead to a further stream of abusive comments. Craig couldn’t remember his dad having friends. His dad did play golf, and he did go to baseball games, and concerts but always with big clients, to solidify contracts, never to relax with them.
I feel so cold. Why am I sweating like this?
Craig just listened to his dad’s harsh words. His dad seemed to have an excellent memory for every time he had messed up some great opportunity by being lazy and not putting out the necessary effort. He felt so cold and clammy. Butch put his nose in his lap. He looked down and began to stroke his dog’s back. Butch began to lick his hands. Craig smiled, and rubbed Butch behind his ears. Craig’s dad was still yelling but now Craig was just tuning him out, focused completely on Butch. He heard a click. His dad was finally done.
I am feeling great now. What is it about this dog?
Craig looked down at Butch with a big smile. He didn’t feel clammy anymore. He had time to take him for a quick walk before he got ready for the game or….went to the office.
Craig is doing very well at work. Why should he hesitate to go out to a ballgame?
He is lonely and this game is an opportunity to make some male friends.
According to the Health Resources and Service Administration, “Two in five Americans report that they sometimes or always feel their social relationships are not meaningful, and one in five say they feel lonely or socially isolated.” Craig doesn’t need someone to just play golf with. He needs to feel emotionally connected to others. To read more about the problems of loneliness go to: