From Nuala O’Faolain’s ‘Are You Somebody?’
“When I was in my early thirties, and entering a bad period of my life, … I asked the doctor to send me to a psychiatrist.
The psychiatrist was in an office in a hospital. ‘Well, now, let’s get your name right to begin with,’ he said cheerfully. ‘What is your name?’
‘My name is … my name is …’ I could not say my name. I cried, as from an ocean of tears, for the rest of the hour. My self was too sorrowful to speak. And I was in the wrong place, in England. My name was a burden to me.
Not that the psychiatrist saw it like that. I only went to him once more, but I did manage to get out a bit about my background and about the way I was living.
Eventually he said something that lifted a corner of the fog of unconsciousness. ‘You are going to great trouble,’ he said, ‘and flying in the face of the facts of your life, to recreate your mother’s life.’ Once he said this, I could see it was true.”