5 Times Television has Made us Confused About Therapy

Hello Royalty! Happy New Year! As many of you experienced yourselves, closing out 2017 took some patience, reevaluation and determination. Thankfully we all made it!

If you have subscribed to my monthly e-mails (and if you haven’t, let’s get you started now), you know that it’s #nogoalsjanuary! I like to take January to rest, truly give myself the time to just be, get back into the groove of things and set a concrete plan that I can accomplish in the new year. In doing such, I’ve been watching lots of television, catching up on my favorite shows and preparing for the winter premieres. While I watch many of these shows, I’m excited to see writers and creators incorporate mental health and at the same time I grit my teeth thinking “WHAT IS HE (or she) DOING?!?! So for you guys, I’ve created a list of 5 times I’ve had to clutch my pearls and say “I hope no one believes this is real!”

5. How to Get Away With Murder

Photo by ABC Televison

So if you didn’t already know, How to Get Away With Murder teaches all us all the DON’TS of therapy. Between letting Bonnie know about his therapeutic relationship with Annalise, not referring her to another therapist after he recognized how his similar loss of a child impacted his ability to provide her with the care she needs and did we mention that his ex-wife sifted through records, found Annalise’s information and reached out to warm her? Dr. Isaac Roa probably needs his license revoked!

4. 13 Reasons Why

Photo by Netflix

I think that all of us who watched that final episode cringed during the last meeting between Hannah and Mr. Porter. Mr. Porter missed the signs on the wall. As Hannah cried out for help, he was reluctant to take her concerns seriously and let her leave without following up with Hannah or her parents regarding her safety. Hopefully in Season 2, we’ll get to see how Mr. Porter attempts to justify his negligence.

3. Love and Hip Hop Atlanta

Photo via VH1

Let me take you all back a minute to 2012 when Stevie J thought it would be a good idea to have Joseline join in on his couples therapy session with Mimi. After he caught the beat down, I hope he recognized otherwise, however, when therapists are aware of triggers that could cause conflict, it is their responsibility to prevent crisis from occurring.

2. She’s Gotta Have It

Photo by Netflix

While many have something to say about Ms. Nola Darling, I’m hear to read Dr. Jameison. She broke too many boundaries. First off, whenever someone comes in for therapy, payment expectations are to be discussed during the first session. Dependent upon on Dr. Jameison’s credentialing board and  code of ethics, bartering may or may not be allowed, yet with her slip about being broke proved that she was not comfortable with the situation. And can we also talk about her showing up to Nola’s art exhibit? While often times clients like to have their therapist’s support in such situations, it’s important for the therapist to set healthy boundaries with clients and remind them of their role.

  1. Blackish
Photo by ABC Television

Blackish has to be one of my favorite shows! My favorite episode was when Bow shared of her challenges with Postpartum Depression and Black women finally saw someone who looked like them who they could relate to in regard to child rearing and its challenges. When Dre and Bow went to see a therapist, the therapist was little slick at the mouth. While funny, it definitely violated their right to seek treatment without feeling demeaned or disrespected.

So while it’s important to recognize that this is television and many of these situations are for entertainment, when it comes to your mental health, ensure that you are aware of your rights as a client, share your expectations with your therapist and when challenges arise, let your therapist know!

 

 

Author: Chalice

Chalice is the owner of The Conscious Queen and mental health professional with over 10 years experience in the social services field.

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