By Tim Stevens
Namor is a human-Atlantean hybrid whose appearance reflects his parentage. He appears to resemble an adult male Caucasian, but also possesses pointed ears and gills more consistent with his Atlantean side. Additionally, Namor has wings on his ankles that enable him to fly.
He arrived to each session dressed in an open vest without shirt, pants or shoes. The writer attempted to redirect the client on his attire, pointing out its inappropriateness for a clinical setting, but the Sub-Mariner either ignored such requests or countered that "what is appropriate in Atlantis is appropriate everywhere" and "I will not be lectured on clothing but someone of such obviously inferior stock."
This attitude was carried throughout each session. The client spoke in a haughty
tone, typically using overly bombastic or formal language when speaking, as if reciting lines from a play. Additionally, Namor constantly questioned the writer's credentials, claiming that the degrees he had received were from institutions that failed to provide "half the education an Atlantean schoolchild might receive by their sixth year." Consistent with this, he was often dismissive of the writer's responses and would, at times, wholly refuse to answer the questions posed.
Despite this, the writer was able to develop a decent profile of the client. While he is undoubtedly arrogant to an excessive degree, he does not appear to have Narcissistic Personality Disorder as he is capable of great empathy and is able to understand how and why others might react to certain situations. He is interpersonally savvy when he wants to be, as demonstrated in both conversation and his business acumen, and has quite a head for philosophy, possibly a product of his oft-mentioned education.
Despite two separate occasions of amnesia in the past, Namor displays no signs of any brain defects, through either physical exam (via fMRI) or reaction and cognition tests.
Thus the writer can conclude with a fair level of certainty that those incidents were isolated and unlikely to present ongoing problems for the client.
What will prove problematic, however, is the Sub-Mariner's anger. He is quick to reach explosive levels of rage and slow to return to baseline. In these rages, he will often lose control and declare war on surface dwellers, seemingly unable to differentiate the actions of few from the actions of all. Additionally, he tends to become sloppy and make poor decisions in these states, as evidenced by the number of temporary, ill-fitting, disastrous alliances he has made in the past. While some of this appears to just be his temperament, there is also evidence to suggest that, given his unique physiology, he has a chemical imbalance in his blood that can spark these tirades. As such, others have compared his mental state to Bipolar Disorder. It would be the opinion of this writer that this would be a mistake. His changes in emotional state occur far too quickly to be compared to Bipolar and attempts to treat him as a Bipolar sufferer would likely prove inadequate and/or dangerous. Instead, the writer urges others to view it as akin to
Borderline Personality Disorder wherein emotions can appear quickly with little warning, change on a dime, and the individual remains quite sensitive to stimuli for long periods of time following an explosion.
The client's connection to the Fantastic Four should also be taken into consideration. Given his link to the Invisible Woman, the nature of which is not entirely clear, Namor often comes to their aid. This may cause problems with his current ally, Doctor Victor Von Doom who has repeatedly expressed an avowed hatred of the costumed adventurers.
For further information on Namor, please refer to report AVENGERS/INVADERS #8 as prepared by Doctors Alex Ross, Jim Krueger and Steve Sadowski and report CAPTAIN AMERICA #46 compiled by Doctors Ed Brubaker and Steve Epting. Both are available for review on January 28.
Tim Stevens is a Mental Health Supervisor currently pursuing his Psy D who has worked with individuals with Bipolar Disorder and Borderline Personality Disorder.
For more on Namor, visit Marvel Digital Comics Unlimited!
Check out the official Marvel Shop for your favorite Marvel Heroes!