The Doctor's In!

Dr. Greg tries to separate people from their actions.

on Mar 18, 2013

In this episode, as a part of my storyline, things are starting to bend in a "good people vs. bad people" direction. I encounter a man who is in therapy because he hates "fat people." I also have dinner with my sisters where I tell them I am getting married and that I have invited my father. In reaction, we hear my sister call my father a derogatory name and you also hear me tell a story where my father called some men he assumed were gay a derogatory name and the family joined in with laughter. 

The viewer is lead to start to believe some people on the show are "good" and some are "bad."

This concept of "good people vs. bad people" makes good TV (think cops and robbers) and is something most embrace without question. If you see some people as "bad," you will feel either threatened or better than the other person and choose to stay away from them. If you see other people as "good," you will feel safe and usually group yourself together with them. 

Nearly everyone I have ever met in therapy or on the street sees himself or herself as a "good person." For them, the "bad people" are the other guy. Even Jessica Rabbit in the animated classic, Who Framed Roger Rabbit? famously proclaimed, "I'm not bad. I'm just drawn that way."

This "good people vs. bad people" sorting probably goes back to ancient times when one tribe threatened another. And today, you the viewer may be seduced into thinking of my client and my father as bad people (or even me for inviting my father to the wedding!). But it's a trap.