Dear Mik and Mike: I have a problem that doesn’t seem to ever get resolved. When I go into large grocery stores by myself, and shop for many items, I begin to weep. I can’t help it! I feel it coming on and try to muscle through it, but by the time my cart is full, I’m sobbing. It doesn’t seem to happen when I run in and out for only an item or two. I went to a therapist for counseling but she cannot figure it out. Any ideas? I need help!
You’re sure it’s not about the prices? Whole Foods destroys me every time. Did your mother lose you in a grocery store when you were little? Did you witness something awful? Did you do something shameful? I’m sure your therapist covered those. Have you thought that perhaps seeing mothers buy groceries for their families, wives stocking up for their husbands, families doing the Saturday food run might be triggering you because you’re shopping alone, and therefore alone and lonely in life? My advice: have your groceries delivered, go to the store with someone, change therapists, or just weep your way through it and you might find clarity.
Who are you shopping for? Yourself? Are you a lonely guy or lonely woman? Is it bringing up your aloneness issues? My mother always said, and still does, “Isn’t there a group for that”? Join a group with an interest similar to yours, a club for socializing, a dance class – something where you interact with others. Please bathe first and brush your teeth!