What About Bob Diagnosis Essay

1202 Words Mar 6th, 2012 5 Pages
PSYC 3350
Abnormal Psychology On-Line
What About Bob "Multi-phobic personality characterized by acute separation anxiety . . ." This is Dr. Leo Marvin's diagnosis of Bob Wiley in the movie What About Bob. But exactly what does this mean? We all seem to have a vague understanding of what a phobia is, whether is be from watching movies or our own personal experiences. But what exactly constitutes a phobia, and how does acute separation anxiety fit in to the diagnosis of this character? The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fourth Edition (DSM-IV) was designed to provide a classification system and means of diagnosis for over 400 mental disorders. By evaluating a client based upon the five separate axes of
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We see other examples of these phobias throughout the movie in Bob's constant use of Kleenex to touch things and spraying disinfectant on telephones and other public areas. We do see highlights of some other possible phobias: the fear of elevators as evidenced by Bob climbing 44 flights of stairs to avoid riding the elevator, acrophobia or fear of heights we see when Bob looks out the 44th floor window, fear of buses evident in Bob's difficulty getting on a bus, as well as possible hydrophobia - fear of water, achluophobia - fear of darkness, and tonitrophobia - fear of thunderstorms. Axis II of the DSM-IV talks about Bob's personality disorder. Bob has a dependant personality disorder and it seems to be characterized by acute separation anxiety. We see evidence of the dependant personality when we are led to believe that Bob's dependence on his previous therapist drove that man out of practice. When Bob makes up stories, impersonates Dr. Marvin's sister, and fakes his own suicide to find out where Dr. Marvin is vacationing, these are all signs of Bob's increasing dependence on the doctor. These actions follow the criteria of DSM-IV of deviation in normal impulse control and interpersonal functioning. We even see Bob lying in bed in a state of panic when he first begins looking for Dr. Marvin, which evidences his acute separation anxiety, brought

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