Sunday, April 05, 2009

In Treatment: Season 2, Episode 2


April enters and we're struggling to figure out what she's doing here. She asks a lot of questions, and she offers information, but what's she doing here? Paul reassures April she can't offend him. "I can't?" "Well, of course you can, but I can take it." Oh, can I try? It was a funny thing to say.

April tells us about her last imperfect therapist who told her the same insignificant story twice. April left the treatment without calling and "the woman was borderline stalking me...second of all she was an idiot." April tells us right off that she can't take being pushed. She tells us she wants to be listened to, and Paul's wasting her time asking about her last shrink. Finally, they come to a calmer place and she has to write down her chief complaint, it's just too hard to say. April has cancer, she doesn't want to talk about it, she just wanted to tell someone. Lymphoma.

April is angry at the medical care she's gotten, she feels like a specimen. She hasn't told her parents. Or anyone else. April is angry with the treatment world. She's not sure she wants treatment and she wants to think about alternative therapies. And then Paul says something nice, he puts April's difficult demeanor in to a nice perspective: "You seem to be a very independent person."

He gives her a list of what she should do: talk to her oncologist, tell her parents. She leaves in a huff without scheduling another appointment. "I'll call you." And we think she might not.

There's not that much to say about the session. Paul has a history of pushing patients a little too hard (if you ask me). This is a difficult patient and we don't know if her anger is part of her, or an acute response to a horrible stress. We do know that, at least for now, she's quick to judge and feeling terribly vulnerable. She pushed Paul by asking about his decorating, why he's moved...and this time he crosses no boundaries.