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Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Gender roles and psychoanalysis. Lowering the tone.

For some strange reason I will sit and watch a full episode of ‘Shopaholics’ on BBC3 when I channel surf upon it. For those of you who don’t know, Shopaholics is a reality tv show that attempts to reform people who overspend to the point that they are in thousands of pounds in debt.

Thrilling viewing pleasure, I can imagine you’re thinking, why on earth is she telling me about her viewing habits now? Well, there are two reasons, and they are completely unconnected

1) Gender role reversal

The two person team on Shopaholics is made up of one women and one man, already there is balance. In a shocking reversal of stereotypes and a swooping move to turn the viewers world upside down the woman is the financial advisor whiz and the man is the caring airy fairy emotion centred psychologist type (I am not sure if he’s a proper Psych-o though).

I like this.

2) Psychoanalysis bites

The caring airy fairy emotional psychologist man seems to be a lover of the psychoanalysis. I myself am rather a hater of the psychoanalysis.

We watch him try to pin every single Shopaholic’s untamed spending habits on depression, triggered by some kind of childhood trauma. When he cannot find a childhood trauma he does the psychoanalysts trick of making everything into a trauma thus confusing the poor Shopaholic into thinking they’ve had a terrible life and their childhood was full of sorrow and pain.

Being a psychoanalyst it appears he thinks every problem stems from childhood. Being a psych graduate who likes to short loud her opinions on all kind of topics and who thinks she knows something about some stuff, I think he is wrong. Yes, I do believe childhood and adulthood trauma can trigger psychological distress, but I don’t think that’s the root of all psychological distress, or the root of all the Shopaholics’ particular wild spending habits.

I believe that learned behaviour could play a large part in the development of a Shopaholic and their debt, as well as the development of other psychological problems. I also believe that addressing and challenging this learned behaviour, along with why it is carried out, can do more to help some people than creating childhood traumas. Don’t that fuck you up more?

I do no like this. I shout-a at the man on tv.

Yes, this was a half cocked discussion of gender roles and psychological approaches to treatment all combined to form an odd post that lacked any kind of conclusion. I should probably leave off the blogging for a while, at least until I can write a post based on something other than me and the tv, so I do not anger readers any further with this waffle.

1 comment:

Joel said...

For real fun, they should recruit some bipolars and deprive them of their meds for a couple of days. Then they will see some truly creative squanderings.

(P.S. Thanks for coming by my blog and leaving your comment. Hope we'll see you again.)