When Danny starts to have as many "aha" moments as their so-called therapist, I think he might have a chance.
The shrink is just too much. He seems soooo fascinated by all of their dysfunction I think he forgets that he's the one who is supposed to be guiding and helping them.
Danny / Gretchen are in typical abuser / abusee roles. I don't know what is so difficult for the therapist to see that and expose it as such.
And yes, as becoming much more obvious, Gretchen is abusing her abuser. That was just really pathetic that she kept laughing hysterically at the melancholy poem/song she wrote on the mirror when she saw clearly that it hurt Danny.
Not that the words weren't true. Not that Danny doesn't deserve to hear it, but to present it as a Father's Day gift...especially in front of the kids??? Not a way to help out a faltering marriage. And definitely not very humane.
But, then, I'm sure her reasoning was that it was not anything as severe as what he's done to her.
Cycle of abuse. Fun, fun. :sad
I guess that was the last show. Left me very sad.
I'm not sure what magic wand people expect a therapist to wave to get things to change. Calling Danny abusive is just blaming him and making him dig in and defend his behavior. He's already aware that he's a big part of their problem. Meanwhile, the therapy has enabled Gretchen to start expressing some of the anger that is causing her to be so withdrawn and cold toward Danny. They need to break down the walls they both have around them if they really want intimacy. Danny's wall is self abuse and dysfunction. If he destroys himself first, nobody else can hurt him the way his father has. Gretchen's wall is detachment, which is, frankly, about the only way to stay sane around someone who is crazy half the time. Danny is working to break down his walls, but some part of him desperately needs acceptance and positive strokes as he does it to feel safe. Gretchen can't give that yet - she still has a lot of pain and anger to work through. Expressing that to Danny may be necessary. Hopefully he can take it. If she can feel safe, finally, to say things and do things that he doesn't like without him going nuts, if she finally can be herself without worrying that it will send him back to a bottle or a suicide hold, then she might finally be able to open up emotionally and give him some of the affection he wants.
I think the counselor is pretty New Age and fuzzy spiritually (my guess is he referred them to the rehab center with its drum circles and chakras and smudge pots). But I also think he's on the job. Therapy is usually pretty messy before things start straightening out.
I can't believe he lost his job because of the show! They had him and Gretchen on Fox Reality TV's "Reality Remix" saying that for no amount of money would they do a second season.
Was it actually because of this show, or was it for other reasons? I doubt they'd actually say why.
The message at the end of the finale said Danny was fired from his job because of some of the same issues that were documented during taping of "Breaking Bonaduce"..another words..He was eventually fired because of his drug use, etc. That's how I understood it anyway.
Who knows? I kind of doubt it, though. They obviously knew he had a substance problem when they let him off for a month of rehab. Wonder what it was that caused them to release him.
Provide life/relationship coping skills....? Provide enough respectful input that his clients will respect him enough to try his strategies....? :shrug
Originally Posted by LKH
All I ever saw this therapist doing is shake his head and moan "Oh Danny..." while providing Gretchen justifications to not deal with her stuff. :mmm
At any rate, I'm glad the series is over. It was very stressful to me :laugh
I wish Danny / Gretchen / their kids the best. Hopefully they can get some real help now that the show is over
Do you really think that's all he said? Their sessions were a LOT longer than the 2-3 minutes we saw each week. And I do think he said many things even during those 2-3 minutes that were insightful and helpful.
Originally Posted by katkitty
Also, I'm not so sure he provided Gretchen justifications. He said he understood why she was closed off. I do too. You have to be if you want to survive around someone who is dangerously volatile. Gary said he started off thinking they needed to get her to open up, and then realized that they could not do that until they got Danny's problems under control. Makes sense to me. Causing her to open up when he was still in meltdown was going to only cause her more pain. Toward the end, after Danny was in rehab, you could see he was starting to pick at Gretchen's reserve. You could also see that she did not like it one bit. I found myself thinking that working through her problems was probably going to take more time than they had on this show. LOL.
But it's also true that Danny needed to develop more realistic expectations. He was looking to Gretchen to be the answer to all his problems. He was forever saying these incredibly dramatic things, like "I'd be dead without her." Nobody can take the pressure of being another person's whole reason for living. One small slip and you might be the reason they are dead, too. That's a horrible curse to live under. Danny needed to start viewing her as his partner rather than his crutch and his counselor and his whole reason for being. He needed to start getting real about how she fit into his life, and probably needed to find something in himself worth living for. Realistically, even if she opens up quite a bit, sex three times a week was probably a lot for her, and he was wanting sex three times a day. He needed to get real about that, too. She was never going to get where that was her idea of a good time, because she's not as focused on it as he is, and frankly, that level of focus is probably not healthy. So Dr. Gary telling him that is not necessarily excusing the way she is; it's simply saying that we can accomplish a lot and she's still not going to live up to your unrealistic expectations, which is true.
Interestingly, most of these kinds of conversations are probably standard stuff among people with these issues. I grew up in an AA family, and we certainly had a lot of these kinds of discussions.
I'm glad it's over too, but for their sake rather than my own. I can't see them really having successful therapy with the pressure of cameras on them all the time. But after getting "in on" this much, I have to say I hope they do a special down the line to tell us how it all came out, good or bad. I hate to see half a story.
What kind of crap do they play at that radio station if Danny has never even heard of the Foo Fighters?
While you're at the Gretchen, play him Kelly Clarkson, Because of You .
Do you remember what day this show was on? Maybe I can pick up a rerun with my Tivo... :)
Originally Posted by karna68
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