Published February 21, 2017

Psych Ward: Jean Grey

The heart of the X-Men enters crisis!

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Jean Grey presents as a woman in her late adolescence/early adulthood in better than average physical fitness. The writer, having previously seen some of her compatriots, was surprised to see her looking as young as she did. However, the client explained that she was most likely not the Jean Grey he had heard about over the years prior but rather an earlier version moved forward to the future. Although this therapist finds this all very perplexing, the client’s self-reporting on the matter does seem accurate.

Since arriving in the future, Grey has found herself bombarded by information from a life yet to come, including struggles controlling the Phoenix Force—and the consequences of the times she has been unable to do so—her relationship to Scott Summers—Cyclops—including their eventual marriage, and the general increasing volatility of mutant relations.

Understandably, this knowledge has proved very distressing to the client. While she has not done any of these things yet—and is unlikely to, given her time displacement—she still feels a certain connection to these, to us, past events. Making things more complicated is that many of the other individuals she has encountered since her arrival all seem to look at her and treat her as the adult Jean Grey they’ve known for years. When she does something that “their” Jean wouldn’t she can feel them judging her. Similarly, when she doesn’t do something that they would’ve expected the adult Jean to do, she is aware of their disappointment. She feels trapped by a past and reputation that are not hers and expressed to this writer several times that it feels as though she often cannot make the right choice. If she does what they want, she betrays her own instincts; if she does what she thinks she should, many people will be confused or disappointed.Jean_grey_all_new_x-men

This has been especially on her mind as of late because of the state of mutantkind. Everything, she has explained, feels very precarious to her and she knows that mutants, especially her teammates in the X-Men, need stability. She knows that, in the past, Jean Grey was often a source of that stability. She can feel within herself the potential to be the same but knows that whatever she does to help her teammates and fellow mutants it will be different than the other Jean would’ve done and worries if that, in and of itself, will create more fear and uncertainty than if she did nothing at all or, as she has tried previously, just went off and lived her life as someone else, concealing her mutant abilities and disconnecting herself from the mutant rights movement.

Despite the enormity of the situation and how confusing it must be, this writer estimates the client’s prognosis to be good. She is thoughtful and intelligent, has a natural charisma, and is clearly a very empathetic individual. Additionally, even if they might have high expectations for her, she has a wealth of people ready and willing to support her and the X-Men are known for having a significant level of resources within their reach.

To gain a better understanding of how time travel and long term displacement might affect a person’s mental health, this writer has referred the client for an appointment with Doctors Jeff Lemire and Eric Koda on Match 22. They will make their findings available to this writer in file EXTRAORDINARY X-MEN #20 so that they can be addressed and incorporated into Jean Grey’s therapeutic sessions.

Psy D. Candidate Tim Stevens is a Staff Therapist who knows if Jean Grey read his mind, she’d find that he is a huge fan of party mix. And he is not ashamed.