Psych Ward

Psych Ward: Beast

Faced with his own mortality, the X-Man and Avenger seeks help!

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By Tim Stevens

Henry “Hank” McCoy is an adult male who self identifies as a mutant. He presents as humanoid in form with feline features, unusually large hands and feet, and a total body covering of blue fur, resulting from both genetic mutation and self experimentation. McCoy is well known within the scientific community for his work in genetic science but is arguably most identified as the sometimes Avenger and founding member of the mutant rights group the X-Men known as Beast. Currently, he both teaches at the Jean Grey School and serves with the X-Men.

The client was inspired to seek therapy by his current belief that he is dying, although he says he has been considering it for some time. While he asserts that he has no fear of his own mortality, he does feel pressure to make his final days as meaningful as possible and believes that a healthy psyche will make that more likely to occur.

In fact, what frightens him more than death is that this newest mutation, evidently his third, will rob him of his intellect and, more importantly, his humanity. The client says an encounter with a psychic named Cassandra Nova forced him to confront this fear once prior, shortly after his secondary mutation, and he was able to overcome it. However, with further changes to his body and mind ahead, those fears have been reignited.

Further complicating things is how unhappy he admits his current state of mind is at the moment. While McCoy has long been associated with an upbeat and verbose disposition, the recent events that saw his friend and longtime teammate Scott Summers—Cyclops—painted as a zealot, villain, and now escaped convict have left him disappointed and sad with the state of things. He has stated in session that the situation has been difficult on him from the start and he has often felt pulled in several directions at once. With the death of Professor Charles Xavier, McCoy says he is also increasingly cynical about whether or not he’ll see equality for mutants in his lifetime, even if his prediction of advancing demise does not prove to be true. In general, the client endorses feelings of pronounced depression and disconnect, admitting he often feels the need to “play the role of Hank McCoy” while not at all feeling like himself.

He asserts that he is not just worried about this for himself either. He feels responsibilities to the students at the Jean Grey School and believes that he is not serving them as well as he could in his current emotional state. If he can’t be there for them, he asserted, they may very well end up experiencing the same kind of pain he currently is dealing with, something he is very dedicated to preventing as best as he can.

Given the client’s dedication to therapy, he has requested and been granted permission to see multiple clinicians in different disciplines here at the clinic. His next appointment, December 5, is with Doctors Brian Michael Bendis and Stuart Immonen. Please see file ALL-NEW X-MEN #3 for session notes.

This will be followed by a session with Doctors Jason Aaron and Nick Bradshaw on December 19 with details recorded in file WOLVERINE AND THE X-MEN #22.

Finally, on January 2, Henry McCoy will meet with Doctors Jonathan Hickman and Steve Epting. Please see file NEW AVENGERS #1 for their notes.

Psy D. Candidate Tim Stevens, MA is a Dialectical Behavior Therapy Consultant and Practicum Trainee who currently provides therapy and outreach at a state university.

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