Subject: Robert Steven "Bobby" Singer
DOB: August 12, 1950
I. Case History: Bobby is a white male widower in his late 60’s, has a mild case of sciatica, a long history of abuse, neglect and alcoholism. Morns the unique double death of his wife Karen. Based on family history he is at risk to suffer from alcoholism and it’s derivative (i.e. liver problems), depression and spurs of violence. Bobby has zero healthy coping skills and resorts to alcohol to mask his problems. Bobby does not display obvious sign of drug abuse, but could be labeled as a functioning alcoholic (5.15).
Bobby presented signs and symptoms of major depression, becoming hostile when confronted about it (5.15- his sudden interest in personal hygiene after years of indifference). His interest in personal care was only linked to Karen’s return so after her second death he returned to old habits. His lack of interest in taking care of himself is worrisome he is classified as being in a low- mid functioning state, medical intervention and psychiatric attention is required. Causes of the depression can be linked to both childhood trauma and survivors guilt. He expresses regret and guilt for the painful circumstance he created pre- Karen’s first death. The regret is aggravated when his life was spared and not Karen’s. Bobby’s inability to deal with childhood trauma let to those previously stated circumstances and possibly was an expression of insecurity in his deeper hidden desire to be a parent. Prove A
He has expressed latent hostility an example being his unwillingness to see himself as Karen saw him, which lead to the fight prior Karen’s death. He has a tendency to become hostel when he is unable or unwilling to express inner conflict.
He is also suffering from inner turmoil from his part in inadvertently causing the death of Rufus Turner’s loved one. Bobby’s unwillingness to see fault post Turner’s loved one death could be derived from his unwillingness to be what his father believed he was and to not deal with another emotional trauma.
Bobby’s involvement with the Winchesters helped ease his insecurities about parenthood and his deep sense of self-loathe. During Bobby’s early involvement with the Winchesters, he was the “cool uncle.” He took the eldest Winchester boy Dean to play baseball in the park instead of what his father John Winchester had previously order him to do. John Winchester was concern about his son’s well being in this ever-growing dangerous world and wanted him trained and prepared. Bobby being the cool uncle showed disregard to the boy’s father and disregard to Dean and presumably Sam’s personal wellbeing, as both boys usually stayed together and Sam was left behind, leaving him vulnerable to the many monsters and demons that surrounded him and his family. Bobby’s intentions were noble to Dean as he was trying to give him the sense of normality he so yearned, in a world where it didn’t exist. Bobby’s lack of disregard for anything other than giving him a normal childhood memory although coming from a good place was dangerous as one could speculate that Sam was in the hands of a demon and Dean was surrounded by one. His need to disregard John’s order was also influence by displacement of anger towards his own father. One could also speculate that Bobby was trying live through Dean, as that would presumably be the normality he too yearned as a child. Prove B
In the Winchesters later years Bobby got into an argument with John that lead to him pulling out a gun on John. Bobby’s intensions are unknown, but from a law enforcement and medical perspective, it was with the intent to kill. Bobby was raised around guns and thus it can be speculated that he was taught that you don’t pull out a gun unless you plant to use it (7.10) Bobby demonstrates serious lack of impulse control. This lead to a period of estrangement from the Winchester. Prove C
The estrangement ended when Bobby selflessly help the Winchester boys find their father. John’s sudden death would push Bobby to father mode as he started to move away from the cool uncle mentality. Bobby provided housing for the brother as they morn the lost of their father. Later that year he tried to help Dean morn over the first loss of his brother Sam.
After Sam is brought back to life Bobby and the boys work diligently to take care of the demon problem, this put a halt in Bobby’s progress as most of his actions were driven by trying to save the world and himself putting faith on the boys that seem like the only game in town. It is believed so because on an interview (previously stated quotes from characters 2.05) with Ellen Harvelle that stated that once things get serious it becomes everyone’s problem. Harvelle is well acquainted with all hunters and thus has a quite general grasp of “hunter’s code” and morality. Prove D
During that time period, he was still very much suffering from impulse control and spurs of anger (3.03). Which can be seen when he lashed out at Sam for getting curse with a rabbit foot. Beside the little spurs of anger he truly showed potential when he tried to keep Dean from being taken to hell (3.16) by putting himself in unnecessary danger and later when he tries to guide Sam during that though transition to life without Dean. At that point, Bobby is not ready to see himself as something other than his father’s son. Prove E
When Bobby says to the boys that “there is more to family that blood”, we see him allowing himself to be part of a family again as he start to see himself in different eyes. However, the road to recovery is long and it is unlikely that he at this point was ready to deal with his unresolved problems. Although it can be stated, that he was making more improvements towards his mental health. We can see clear improvement when he reasons with Dean to not “push away” his demon-blood-addicted brother and instead bring him back; he allowed himself to think like a father (4.21) and give Dean good advice. Prove F
He at that point had not yet conquer his anger issues or impulse control issue as he throws Dean what can only be assume as an empty threat “don’t make me get my gun boy” and spurts into rage when Dean refuses to listen by violently empting his desk (4.22). Throwing things around like that is a juvenile behavior that comes from a lack of maturity and lack of ability to express emotions without using violence. Again, Bobby was well-intentioned trying to unite the brothers, but he was rash much to rash specially when he proceeded to talk badly of his father. You don’t verbally degrade a child’s parent to try to make your point. Even if what you believe is true, demoralizing a child’s parent is always frown upon morally and legally. Bobby shows that he has yet to deal with his displaced anger. Prove G
His inability to have healthy outlets to cope with stress would land him further into depression. When Bobby stabs himself to fight of the demon possessing him, he did so believing that Castiel would heal him. When Cass was unable to heal him his problems got worst. He would have been full blown suicidal if it wasn’t for the Winchesters. His personal growth is shown when a worried and scare Dean calls for help once Jo Harvelle is badly injured (5.10) Bobby’s emotional growth was shown when he talked Dean for the most part calmly and reasonably, as Bobby and company tried to solve the apocalypse problem while also dealing with Dean’s pessimist input (5.18).
The apocalypse causes significant and reasonable distress that Bobby hastily decides to sell his soul to Crowley. This event would bring about the next personal growth in the end. Bobby found himself reasonably preoccupied to gain control of his soul not reaching out to people for help and pretending to be okay. Holding back emotions is never healthy and that lead to an outburst later with Sam and Dean. Bobby had been making serious improvement but he wasn’t quite there in the whole father front that he so desired. He crushed under pressure about his doomed soul and demanded help. Parents are supposed to be their child’s rock and never have outburst in front of their children even their adult children, as it’s detrimental. Prove H
When a soulless Sam tries to kill Bobby, he can’t hide a feeling of unwillingness to be around a newly rehabilitated Sam. Bobby’s self-preservation leads him away from father figure, but towards deeper self-awareness, which is crucial for personal growth.
Trouble with Mother leaves Bobby’s progress at a standstill once again; as he along with the Winchester boys look for a way to defeat the next big threat. However, Bobby was more self aware of his validity as a good person and his possibility of being a good father unlike his own. Bobby needed to understand that his father’s errors didn’t have to be his. He had ran away from his fears and created a self-fulfilling prophecy turning him into a drunk angry person with violent spurs. Bobby’s early involvement with the Winchester boys ended up saving him from himself as physical abuse was something he never did, but was prone to because of his previous history with abuse. Bobby realized that he was really capable of being a different than his father. It was then that he “adopted the boys that became heroes” as we see him put the boys interest before his own self preservation and stays as a ghost to help them with the Leviathans (7.10) and to asked them to salt and burn his body when he became unable to control himself(7.23). It was from that day on he became an adoptive father to the boys dealing with his repressed trauma and fighting for the boys even after he was in heaven (10.17). Prove I
Prove A: Bobby’s childhood trauma of being abused, having killed his father and the loss of a relationship with his mother can be caused of depression as Freud hypothesis that depression is caused not only by biological factors, but by some loss of relationship. Bobby lost the possibility of a good relationship with his father (that every child years) forever as his father is now dead. Bobby lost his innocence when he killed. Bobby also lost his mother perhaps the most significant lost, as it’s the one that was always a constant source of love. Bobby lost his mother that day figuratively because of her reaction to him saying her.
Hostility is created by fear: Bobby was scared of losing Karen again so he lashed out in fear in a defensive manner.
Bobby like the majority of the people in his social time are expected to reproduce so his was also, what he became to expect. As a healthy psyche is ruled by (Ego) social norms but influenced by Id and Superego.
Prove B: Freud believed that displacement was an unconscious defense mechanism where the mind substitutes a feeling for one target to another target because the target is either not permitted or not available. Bobby’s father was dead so he was unable to tell his father off; he instead took his aggressions and displaced them on John. John was a father to boys and was demanding of them because he was interested on their safety. Therefore it was only to easy to displace his feelings and resort to anger as well.
Prove C: Bobby’s argument with John although unknown impacted Bobby as we can assume that John was a friend of him at one point, his sense of belonging was not meet as Bobby lived alone and had no friend where he lived. This created hostility as a defense mechanism.
Prove D: according to Maslow’s motivational theory, humans have five main needs that needed to be met. The needs are arranged in a pyramid the ones at the bottom being the ones that needed to be met first. At the very bottom are the basic needs physiological and safety needs. The deficiency of those needs are what motivates people to achieve them specially if the needs are unmet for a long time.
Prove E: Bobby refers to himself as a “paranoid bastard” (episode 21 of season 6) which told me a lot about his personality. Bobby displays the personality of a someone with a neurotic psyche. People with neurotic psyche display a lot of anxiety and guilt. Since Bobby suffers from massive amounts of anxiety, that he probably masks with alcohol, he struggles with the fear that he will end up like his father thus it is hard for him to see himself as anything other than his father’s son.
Prove F: Bobby at the time still in pre-apocalyptic scenario unable to solve his problems to fulfill his needs and suffering from high amounts of fears caused by his neurotic psyche allows himself a moment of clarity to help the boys.
Prove G: Bobby’s displacement of anger is caused by a conflict between his needs and his morals. A person’s mind cannot deal with conflicting thoughts (Bobby hates his father, but respects him too because he was taught to do so). Bobby wants to avoid the conflicting thoughts (Id) and just hate his father, but his morals (super ego) instilled by his mother won’t allow it. It is from this conflict that Bobby unconsciously decides to displace his anger on someone acceptable to his morals.
Prove H: Here again, Bobby’s needs are not met so he needs to meet them above all things. With his neurotic psyche, this causes him to lash out.
Prove I: Bobby was able to be angry at his father and that would bring about an end to his issues with displacement. His ability to tell of his father allowed him to see himself differently. This brought about a closure to his psychological needs in Maslow’s hierarchy because he achieved his greatest accomplishment to not be like his father. The realized that he wasn’t like his father he allowed himself to parent Sam and Dean and give himself the title of adoptive father. Bobby was dying so his basic needs did not need to be met. Allowing him to be able to a fulfill his other needs. Since Bobby always wanted to feel good about himself and he was dying he turn that his greatest accomplishment and he felt, he reached his full potential thus achieving all of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs.
II. Intervention: Encourage Bobby to seek further Psychoanalysis to bring about healthy coping mechanisms that are still lacking and to bring about more inner growth. The depression is still present and need to be dealt with if he is resuscitated. Prove J
Prove J: if Bobby is resuscitated, he will need to accomplish the needs that he skipped because he was dying. He would also need to learn good coping mechanisms, that affected his depression. Bobby would still be depressed once he is resuscitated because he still had to deal with the loss of Karen and his neurotic psyche.