By Tim Stevens
The client, born Max Eisenhardt and also known as Erik Lehnsherr, prefers to be called by the moniker “Magneto,” denoting his self-identified status as a mutant. He presents as a middle aged adult of above average physical fitness. He was referred to this writer by Scott Summers, aka Cyclops of the mutant rights group the X-Men, for a full psychological evaluation. Although this writer made it clear to both the client and Summers that a therapist’s role is not to discern people’s true intentions, both insisted on the usefulness of the session. With this in mind, this writer is focusing the report around the possibility of the client’s potential for future dangerousness, something that may or may not include betraying the X-Men.
The client insisted throughout session that his recent reformation was no act. He presented as sincere and honest, able to both advocate for himself while admitting to past mistakes. While he found no need to renounce his past mutant separatist beliefs, he insisted that Summers’ actions had demonstrated to him that mutantkind could be protected without the necessity of proactively attacking humanity.
It should be noted that this is not the first time that the client has seemingly embraced the X-Men and their mission. Previously, he even acted as headmaster at the Xavier School for Gifted Youngsters, an institution that advocated for and taught about the peaceful co-existence of mutants and humans. However, he eventually became frustrated and disillusioned with the school and working with such mutant rights groups as the X-Men and the New Mutants. At this time, the client fled into seclusion only to return, yet again dedicated to the ideas of mutant superiority and separatism.
It is these aspects of his history that give this writer pause. While I do not doubt his current sincerity, he has proven in the past that he can be sincere about such perspectives for a period of time and still eventually give them up to return to his more radical views. There is nothing here, in this writer’s estimation that shows clearly that this will not be the case here if the client does not explore the elements of his past that have shaped his views and begin to confront those memories in a healthy and supportive setting.
Future dangerousness is always a difficult thing to estimate and this situation is no different. While this writer does not believe that the client poses any immediate threats to the X-Men, I cannot, in good conscience, say that it is unlikely that he ever would. Incidents of great sadness or frustration have caused him to regress in the past and there appears to be no substantial changes in the way he copes with disappointments or adverse emotional stimuli. Until the client addresses these underlying triggers, any changes in philosophy are unlikely to be stable or long-lasting.
Max Eisenhardt has agreed to return for a follow up session with Doctors Kieron Gillen and Carlos Pacheco on April 6. Please refer to the notes in file UNCANNY X-MEN #534.1.Psy D. Candidate Tim Stevens, MA is a Practicum Trainee at a Federal Correctional Institute and a Dialectical Behavior Therapy Consultant.