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Mental Health on TV


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#211

SnarkySheep

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Posted May 2, 2012 @ 5:42 PM

cosmom, the only one I can think of with a definite diagnosis is Max Braverman from Parenthood.

As for the ones who behaved in a certain way but nothing's ever been officially said, there are Dr. Temperance Brennan and Zack Addy from Bones, and Adam Rove from Joan of Arcadia. There was also some speculation about Dr. Cal Lightman from Lie to Me when that show was on the air, that he was either on the autism spectrum or perhaps bipolar.

I did a quick Google, and there's a list of fictitious people on the autism spectrum on Wiki.
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#212

selkie

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Posted May 2, 2012 @ 11:58 PM

The alternate universe version of Astrid is essentially definitely diagnosed per Jaskia Nicole who plays her. In real life, Nicole has an autistic sister, and Nicole has said that she based a few of alt.Astrid's mannerisms on her. Interview here.
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#213

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Posted May 5, 2012 @ 12:48 AM

I believe Hart Hanson has pretty much confirmed that Zack Addy is mildly autistic, but that Temperence Brennan is not. Her issues are psychological.
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#214

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Posted May 5, 2012 @ 6:17 PM

Bruce, I've heard that too, but IMO it seems rather unlikely that her issues would be THAT severe. After all, she grew up in a perfectly normal (in front of her, anyways) family, with parents who loved her and a big brother who took care of her. Her first real trauma occurred when she was 15 and her parents disappeared, and she went through the various foster homes. IMO Brennan's overall personality and behaviors would have been pretty set by that time already.

But others have implied that she was a bit autistic as a child as well. For example, in the first episode we met her brother, Russ said that Brennan would often go days at a time without speaking, and that after their parents disappeared she didn't speak for months. That to me is a huge waving flag, but hey, if Hart Hanson says it ain't so...
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#215

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Posted May 12, 2012 @ 5:23 PM

Just fyi, some topics that come up here are discussed a lot in other threads as well. For example, discussion of a main character who is bipolar is a big focus on the Homeland thread. I love this show and it certainly treats mental health in a more interesting, on-going way than I remember seeing in a series. It helps that it's an excellent actor, Clair Danes, that the character is fully developed and the bipolar aspects are integrated into her personality or maybe I should say persona. I don't want to say more because it's part of the mystery of the show and I might ruin it for those who haven't watched.

On the flip side, a comedy I have only seen a couple times, Big Bang Theory, supposedly has at least one character who most viewers consider to have Asperger's. Probably Sheldon. In general, all the guys on the show are fairly geeky and I couldn't tell if the condition is being played for laughs or actually explored.
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#216

joanne3482

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Posted May 16, 2012 @ 11:50 AM

Having worked for a university around a number of crazy smart people, I've never thought of Brennan or Sheldon as on the spectrum. They reminded me of some of the professors I had worked with - super intelligent and basically uninterested in anything but their own stuff. I had a professor who would send me requests (this IS in the days of email) that were calligraphied by hand and he'd make his student employee bring it to me. I worked in HR and it was amazing how many could not fill out simple benefit forms. Even the professors who were generally pretty nice, if they were in the middle of something could become absent minded and sometimes rude about interruptions. This is especially true in publish or perish institutions (which I presume Cal Tech probably is). You've always got to be better than everyone else to keep your job. Now, could those with Aspergers and who have the necessary focus gravitate to academia with its rather clear rules and hierarchy, I don't know.

Her first real trauma occurred when she was 15 and her parents disappeared, and she went through the various foster homes. IMO Brennan's overall personality and behaviors would have been pretty set by that time already.


Don't forget, though, her first real trauma came the first time they went on the run when she was 2 - 3ish and they changed her name from Joy to Temperence and Russ's name got changed as well. She's clearly very smart and was probably speaking by that time and who knows what the parents could have said to her to keep her quiet and not using Russ's real name. (Kevin I think). Could have had an effect on her in the future with keeping her mouth shut.
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#217

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Posted May 30, 2012 @ 6:40 PM

Seriously, does anyone with schizophrenia ever take their medicine? It seems like people never want to take their meds, and go crazy as a result. The latest entry in this trope was Shadow Of Fear, in which a young man stalks a woman because his refusal to take his schizophrenia meds have made him go crazy.
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#218

camom

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Posted May 31, 2012 @ 5:27 PM

Having worked for a university around a number of crazy smart people,


I actually work at Caltech and, trust me, there are some crazy smart people. Not quite as bad as Sheldon, but some very quirky people. They are so focused that they are often unaware of their surroundings. They also may know next to nothing about current (unscientific) culture. I've met professors who have never heard of Lady Gaga, the Titanic movie, American Idol, etc.
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#219

OSM Mom

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Posted May 31, 2012 @ 5:34 PM

Seriously, does anyone with schizophrenia ever take their medicine? It seems like people never want to take their meds, and go crazy as a result.


It seems to happen quite a bit in real life...maybe art is imitating it.
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#220

BruceMO

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Posted Jun 2, 2012 @ 12:06 PM

Seriously, does anyone with schizophrenia ever take their medicine? It seems like people never want to take their meds, and go crazy as a result.


It seems to happen quite a bit in real life...maybe art is imitating it.


I have an aunt who is schizophrenic who has been off her meds several times. The side effects are often quite unpleasent, so they often quit when they've been leveled out for a while because they feel like they are cured. And some would rather be schizophrenic than be on their meds because of the side effects.
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#221

Bastet Esq

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Posted Jun 2, 2012 @ 1:01 PM

The side effects are often quite unpleasent, so they often quit when they've been leveled out for a while because they feel like they are cured. And some would rather be schizophrenic than be on their meds because of the side effects.


In the six or so years I watched it, Law & Order: SVU generally didn't have a particularly deft touch with mental health issues - Olivia, in particular, displayed gross ignorance and was only called out for it once that I can remember - but in two storylines they did a surprisingly good job exploring that very conundrum (and the related issue of forced medication).
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#222

cosmom

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Posted Jun 2, 2012 @ 3:43 PM

so they often quit when they've been leveled out for a while because they feel like they are cured.

I've heard this several times IRL. Don't know if it has been part of a storyline - I've never seen it, but there's lots of tv I don't watch.
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#223

emjay1116

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Posted Jun 2, 2012 @ 6:42 PM

It's definitely an issue for bipolar. During manic phases, you feel like you're freaking invincible, that everything is just so awesome, so who needs meds? Then you stop taking them. Then because of the nature of the disease, eventually the manic phase ends and you head in the other direction. Only without the meds, the depression part gets worse. It starts to make the cycle worse.
And then there are a lot of people with bipolar who self medicate, because they think illegal drugs level them out much better than the meds. That's why my sister got into that shit.


And I know a lot of people complain about how they feel on their meds. Sometimes the side effects are unpleasant or you can't really adjust to them or learn to deal. If it takes a while to find the right medication, the right combination, the right dose, it can become frustrating and make you just give up on it all together.


Also, I think for schizophrenia, hallucinations and paranoia play a part in it too. If that happens to be one of the symptoms you experience because of the disease, then yeah you'd stop taking the medicine thinking somebody or something was out to get you.
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#224

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Posted Aug 10, 2013 @ 8:59 PM

Rookie Blue has a new cop in the division, who's bipolar. She is taking meds and has it under control, but has not told anyone about her diagnosis. She and her partner get covered in heroin that's suspected of being contaminated with anthrax during a bust, so they have to empty their pockets and strip naked to be decontaminated. She is apparently carrying her medication with her, which is how her partner finds out about it.

 

Here's the thing: she could get into big trouble for not disclosing her diagnosis. But she hid it because she was afraid of being discriminated against if it was known. Her partner agrees to keep her secret. We still don't know if this is the end of it or if it will blow up in their faces later in the season.

 

Also: one day a pill gets dropped at the station, and seen by some of the other cops. They don't know who it belongs to, but one guy assumes it belongs to another new officer, who has a fun-loving and somewhat quirky personality. He happens to be dating her, also. So he confronts her about how she didn't tell him, and how can he trust her if she's keeping such an important secret blah blah blah. At first she has no idea what he's talking about, because the pill is not hers and she's not bipolar. When he tells her what he's referring to, she's furious that he assumed it was hers, and that he regards her personality as a symptom of an illness. He has a considerable amount of crow to eat before she forgives him.


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#225

Rae Spellman

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Posted Aug 13, 2013 @ 2:15 AM

 

When he tells her what he's referring to, she's furious that he assumed it was hers, and that he regards her personality as a symptom of an illness. He has a considerable amount of crow to eat before she forgives him.

 

 

On Rookie Blue, Chloe also tells the cop who unbeknown to her is actually bipolar that she's upset that Dov thought that she'd keep that information from someone she cared about.


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#226

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Posted Oct 2, 2013 @ 10:43 PM

 

Also: one day a pill gets dropped at the station, and seen by some of the other cops. They don't know who it belongs to, but one guy assumes it belongs to another new officer, who has a fun-loving and somewhat quirky personality. He happens to be dating her, also. So he confronts her about how she didn't tell him, and how can he trust her if she's keeping such an important secret blah blah blah. At first she has no idea what he's talking about, because the pill is not hers and she's not bipolar. When he tells her what he's referring to, she's furious that he assumed it was hers, and that he regards her personality as a symptom of an illness. He has a considerable amount of crow to eat before she forgives him.

 

As a bipolar person, unless the drug has a name on it"prozac" or something, how would they know it's a psych drug?  It could easily a blood pressure pill, migraine pill, non-narcotic pain pill (Neurontin). If it's generic, it won't even have the name on it.  


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#227

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Posted Oct 16, 2013 @ 12:10 PM

Most drugs have markings (letters and numbers) that identify them. You can then google something like "white oval m 357" and get the type of med it is. It still doesnt mean that they could guess the diagnosis, since most drugs have multiple applications.
Most drugs have markings (letters and numbers) that identify them. You can then google something like "white oval m 357" and get the type of med it is. It still doesnt mean that they could guess the diagnosis, since most drugs have multiple applications.
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