Why my tarot card reader is more like a therapist

I was sitting on a bench outside my university library, explaining to a friend that I knew I needed to end something with a guy I’d been sleeping with. It was all very cliche; I liked him more than he liked me and I knew I couldn’t feasibly keep sleeping with him whilst knowing that information without inflicting serious emotional trauma on myself. My friend was sympathetic and told me that if I wanted to feel “more emotionally grounded” going into the chat with him, that she recommended I see her tarot card reader.

Her tarot card reader, she told me, had accurately predicted the trajectory of her current relationship and was incredibly good at providing advice during times of crisis. I didn’t need much convincing because I’d always wanted to go to one and having a reader that came recommended directly removed the potential threat of wasting money on one that wasn’t very good.

I made an appointment to see her three days after the chat with my friend and the day before I was meant to see the guy I’d been sleeping with to end things. Since our first appointment, which was two years ago, I’ve seen my tarot card reader once every six months.

Our first session was interesting, to say the least. Not only did she tell me I should spend the next month “fucking him over” like he did me (I did not want to do this, so I didn’t), but also that I would meet my partner in the following year. This partner, she told me, would be quite incredible, probably be from overseas and people would try to break us up because they’re jealous. So, basically, she told me I’d fall in love and date Harry Styles, which suited me just fine. The most frustrating aspect was what I mentioned about her advising I not completely end things with the guy and that I draw it out a little bit. I knew I didn’t want to do that, so I was annoyed she would suggest it.

But this proved to be one of the best things about seeing a tarot card reader: when you’ve been too-ing and froo-ing over something and they advise you to take a certain route, but you hate the idea of taking the route they suggest, it makes clear what you know you actually want to do. It leaves little doubt in your head about whether or not you should take the other option, because you were given a perfectly reasonable excuse to do it (your tarot card reader suggested it) but you didn’t want to. So you don’t.

One of the best things about seeing a tarot reader is that, even if they aren’t necessarily revelatory, they give a voice to problems that you’re already aware of and provide an outlet through which you can think about and work through them. Most tarot card readers won’t be able to predict your future; they’ll be able to tell you if they sense that certain paths seem like dead-ends or if they might lead to fruitful opportunities.

Not only this but as someone who is perpetually single, having someone (even if it might not be entirely based in fact or truth) tell me that there will be someone in my future feels affirming in a way that a mere friend telling me the same info isn’t. And on this, it highlights a further benefit of having a tarot card reader: even if the things they say don’t come true, or they aren’t able to predict your future: they allow you to vocalize the things you’ve been thinking about, set your priorities and give you space to recalibrate in a way that is patient and grounding. It’s a person to say “you’re doing okay” or help you admit that maybe you aren’t.

Sometimes, it all being in your head is a good thing, because at least you can get a handle of what is actually going on up there.

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