The Blindfold Test: A lesson in trust

Published 11:29 am Tuesday, December 11, 2018

There is a doctor in the New York area whose practice consists of marriage counseling.

She has a new and creative approach to test what she considers the most important ingredient for a successful marriage — trust.

Without trust between the two, marriage can never work.

On a Saturday morning, she places a solid mask over the eyes of one of the couple. The mask cannot be removed until Sunday afternoon.

This means the other partner must do everything for the masked partner during that time, including dressing, bathing, eating, bathroom duties and errands.

At the end of this test, they go back to the doctor who removes the mask and then a long session follows about feelings and trust.

The following weekend, the other person does the same thing, wearing the mask and seeing how trust must be there 100 percent.

It is a creative and honest way to test the extent to which the couple can function in many different ways.

When I heard about this, I did not quite buy it. I have never been without any sight in my life and had no idea to the extent we depend on our eyes as we live every day.

But then came the day someone here at Brookdale asked me what was wrong with my right eye, “It looks funny.” 

After a look in the bathroom mirror, I realized my right eyelid was closing, blocking out light necessary to see.

I already had Macular Degeneration in both eyes, but my right eye was the better of the two.

Therefore, within a short time, the left eye was essentially blind and the good right eye couldn’t help much because of the shade closing rapidly.

Surgery was the only answer. By raising the eyelid surgically, making an incision all the way across the top of the lid and raising the muscle no longer working, hopefully, I will be able to bring enough light back into my right eye and then use a strong magnifier. 

Meanwhile, I’m a mess.

The surgery is done and I can’t bend or exert.

I use ice packs to reduce the swelling and add antibiotics to the eyelid and rest.

No walking laps or exercising.

I’ve been just sitting in my little apartment, and I can’t see to do one thing.

I drop everything I reach for; I lose stuff because I can’t see where I put them.

When they bring my room tray for meals, I spill something on that tray every time.

I can’t read my computer, my mail or answer incoming mail.

My two cats are sticking to me like duct tape and tussling with each other for my attention.

Worst of all, I ask for help for almost everything from raising and closing my windows to putting my clothes on right side out.

The doctors said in another week I’ll be able to see better and the fuzziness will clear. I sure do pray so.

I never knew how necessary eyesight was for the rest of my body to function.

I actually feel sort of nuts, off the path, unable to follow my normal routine and you should see what this written column looks like on this paper. The lines go up and down with no regard to being straight. I can’t even tell when I’m at the end of a line.

It goes on and on and I’m an emotional wreck.

This column, my friends, is a pure act of love from me to you. I hope next week to be back to myself with one eye that gets enough light for me to put pen to paper and write to you in a normal way.

Now, I understand the importance of trust in a relationship. First of all, one must trust yourself to follow your life routine and recall where everything is. Trust truly is the answer.

The view from the mountain is wondrous.

Jean Brody is a passionate animal lover and mother. She previously lived in Winchester, but now resides in Littleton, Colorado. Her column has appeared in the Sun for more than 25 years.