The Psychology in Mythology: Apollo and Daphne

On a whim last week I picked up a copy of (Thomas) Bulfinch’s Mythology from Costco. Purely for the inspiration it might give me for my writing. However, after reading out a story to a friend it occurred to me it might be amusing to share my analysis of the characters from a therapist’s perspective. This is at the risk of coming across as one of those people who can never detach themselves from their work and just relax! Anyway, because this post relates to both my writing and the therapy work I have decided to post to both of my sites.

My professional website:

My writing blog:

Apollo and Daphne

The first line of a story is important. It sets the entire scene. In fact, the first line of a story should be the last line the author writes in my opinion. The first line of this fable tells us this: “Daphne was Apollo’s first love.” Here we have the word ‘love’ used and it is important to keep in mind that ‘love’ is a weasel word. It can mean almost anything to anyone. It might mean, “like” in the context of “I love ice cream”, it might mean sexual lust, “I love that babe in the swimsuit over there,” and it might mean a willingness to self-sacrifice, “the soldiers died for the love of their nation.” In fact love can mean just about anything a person wants it to mean: “if you loved me you would say ‘yes’ to me” versus “it’s because I love you that I say ‘no’ to you.” What does it mean that Daphne was Apollo’s first love? The reader should keep this question in mind all the way through this fable. Continue reading

Book Review: The Sociopath Next Door by Martha Stout

Apparently, I’m not a sociopath.5106v842oal-_sx321_bo1204203200_

See, this morning I was placed in a situation of moral hazard.  I was at the hospital having a blood test taken.  This was for a clinical trial that I am participating in.  The nurse just assumed that I had come at the correct time, but I was half an hour early.  The study guidelines stated that the blood had to be taken no earlier than 9.30am, not the current time of 9am.  However, it would convenience me to finish up at the hospital at 9am instead of 9.30am.  I was almost elated; the nurse hadn’t noticed the guidelines.  All I had to do was keep quiet and I would get my way and be happy.  Except, I’ve worked in research in the past, I know how serious following protocols are: this nurse would certainly get in trouble with his supervisor.  *sigh* I really, really wanted to leave the hospital earlier.  But I didn’t want this guy to be in trouble for this.  So I told him.  He checked the guidelines and realised the mistake he was about to make, and told me I had to wait for 30 minutes longer before I could leave. Continue reading