Tuesday June 14th, Scott & I headed to Knoxville to continue with this next step of the deaconate program. A friend of ours who’s also applied had advised us to allow plenty of time. Three hours to be exact! Unfortunately, Scott & I couldn’t do it at the same time because they only had one computer allotted to this test.
I was going in first – the receptionist handed Scott a sheaf of documents to complete! Here’s the thing… Scott hates paperwork. As a matter of fact, any paperwork that he normally has to fill out he will bring to me to do it! He’ll fill out forms online all day if he has too but present him with paper & pen & his color changes!
At 10:10 I started. Approximately 175 statements that I had to reply to about me. My choice of answer was “definite yes, definite no & undecided”. Some questions were easy….
“The sight of blood makes me sick”. NO
“I often have thoughts of suicide”. NO
“Most of the time, I am happy”. YES
“It makes me sad when people are gossiping about me”… first of all, this is something I never think about and secondly I don’t care if people do. And YES it does make me sad – I feel sad for those people that don’t have anything better to do but this question doesn’t imply anything. So I replied “UNDECIDED”
Of course I want to be truthful but some of these statements didn’t leave choice for an honest answer. For example, “Would you do anything to prevent cruelty to an animal”? Yes but then again, define “Anything”. I wouldn’t throw myself in front of a truck. So if I do answer YES, will the shrink think I would go to extreme measures to save an animal? I love animals, but I wouldn’t put my life in danger for one.
At the end of this part I get an “error” message – “You have more than 40 UNDECIDED”. PLEASE GO BACK AND REVIEW YOUR ANSWERS. Hmm, maybe I’m just that type of person… kind of on the fence about things. Actually I’m not. I’m really a “Black or White” person. I have a problem with gray areas but these questions were really strange.
Then after this section I had to answer the same questions but this time about Scott!
Following this grueling hour or so (+ 350 questions), I get to the “True or False” segment. 576 questions!
“I hear voices” FALSE
“I see spirits” FALSE (I see dead people!
“I am afraid of sharp objects” TRUE
“Plants talk to me” WHAT?
Don’t laugh, these were actual questions! Do you really think I’m going to tell you if my English Ivy is chatting up a storm with me?
Finally I walk out to find Scott still completing the written questionnaire! I was about to make fun of his predicament when the receptionist handed me a replica of the same sheaf of papers! Ouch!
This was the part that I found a bit much…. “My” parents health, “my” parents profession, the atmosphere in “my” home growing up, “my” relationship with my siblings growing up… and the jackpot questions were the ones that questioned my sex life! When had I had sex for the first time? What did I think about sex growing up? Did your family openly talk about sex? Seriously, does someone need to know this to accept my husband’s application to the Deaconate program?
I have nothing to hide… my life is pretty much an open book but I think this psychologist should adapt her “quizzes” to the situation of the people getting these assessments. These questions were clearly for someone visiting a shrink for the first time for psychological or emotional reasons. Scott thought I was being overly sensitive…maybe I was!
Somehow, I expected the questions to be more of a religious/spiritual nature but I don’t remember answering anything even remotely religious. Don’t you just hate these kinds of tests where there are no wrong answers and the person analyzing your responses will know your deepest, innermost feelings?
For the record, Scott doesn’t share my opinion on this and I’m okay with that. He and I are different that way and that’s part of what makes our marriage work.
Our next step is meeting with this psychologist for the results of our assessment… stay tuned! This should be interesting!