Monday, July 01, 2019

Reader's Diary #2054- ​Téa Mutonji: The Doctor's Visit

If you've ever gone to a mental health professional, there's a good chance you'll recognize the resistance of Kate, the roommate of the narrator in Téa Mutonji's short story "The Doctor's Visit" who recounts her first visit to a psychiatrist.The first time the doctor says anything close to a cliche, Kate balks. Dismisses her as an uncaring quack.

What I found most interesting is that the verdict is really still out on this doctor but the point seems more about recognizing how difficult it is to take that first step for help. I imagine, as is the case with Kate, it's even more so when that there's trauma as an underlying cause.

Finally, I also enjoyed comparing Kate's friend to the doctor. Though the narrator has given Kate lots of advice prior to the visit (even what beverages she should drink), when Kate begins to tell her story, the narrator simply listens. It would seem, at least from this early stage, that the friend may play a key role in Kate's healing as well.

Mutonji has done a remarkable job capturing complex human emotions.

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