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Spinning Out | A Glimpse Inside Human Psychology

Is the series only about Bipolar patients?

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Netflix dropped a few new shows this month, welcoming 2020 in a glorious way. While Messiah revolved around a mystery, Spinning Out made you question your own personality. What seemed to be focusing on the family and sports drama, actually portrayed psychological aspects as well as mental illnesses. How these illnesses can alter a sportsperson’s capability to perform, as well as how it can affect the decisions as well. Here’s a look inside the human psychology presented in Spinning Out.

Spinning Out Season 1 | Bipolar Patients

The manic depression, now termed as bipolar, is one of the mental health conditions that cause mood swings, of extreme level. The patients suffer from both the highs and lows of emotions, jumping from mania to depression.

The lead character of Spinning Out Season 1, Kat Baker (Kaya Scodelario) is secretly struggling with bipolar disorder. And only her family is aware of it. Her mother Carol Baker (January Jones) also suffers from bipolar disorder. However, her half-sister Serena Baker (Willow Shields) does not inherit it.

Kat Baker is a high-level single skater who is planning to give up skating after a deadly fall. She is out of practice, recovering from the head injury and when she is back to skating, the fall keeps haunting her, forcing her to use easier moves and prevent herself from falling again. The fall soon becomes a phobia for her and she almost loses her chance to skate again. However, she is paired up with a pairs skater from a wealthy family, Justin Davis (Evan Roderick). But, she faces the risk of exposing her bipolar disorder.

Before pairing up with Justin, Kat Baker is shown as a sweet person who religiously follows her medications. She does not want to be like her mother, Carol Baker, and affect her skating as well as personal life.

Representation of mental health issues

While the show explores the competition level and life of skaters, it also explores the mental health issues. The bipolar patients have psychosis episodes, suffering from hallucinations, and delusions. They cannot differentiate between the delusions and reality, and it makes them take incorrect decisions or steps that they repent later.

For example, in Spinning Out Season 1, we see Carol Baker having psychotic episodes multiple times. She forces her younger daughter, Serena, to do an unrealistic set of pushups in coldest weather and she hurts herself. Carol is also shown scrubbing a clean floor and chanting to herself that Kat will not come home if it’s not clean.

Similarly, Kat Baker goes through psychosis when she starts skipping her medicines. She is hyper-energetic, frenzied and ends up having a party in Justin’s hotel room, with strangers and drugs.

The bipolar patients get relief in the form of therapy sessions, correct dosage of medicines and regular use, in-patient care and will-power. That’s what the end of Spinning Out proves as well. However, the same is not true for every bipolar patient.

Diagnosing Bipolar Patients

The bipolar patients often face Psychomotor Agitation. Though Spinning Out Season 1 touches this issue subtly, it is a known problem with the patients. The series shows Kat Baker biting her arm multiple times in order to control herself. Similarly, her mother Carol Baker picks at her finger and bleeds, to calm herself.

Throughout the show, it is not clear whether Kat Baker inherited her bipolar disorder from her mother since her birth or if it was an issue caused by her head injury.

Bipolar Patients have Lithium prescriptions, which helps them to prevent mania. However, as the show proves, Lithium acts as a controlling agent. It does not cure Bipolar Disorder.

Apart from bipolar disorder patients, we see jealousy as a prominent issue in Spinning Out.

Spinning Out is a must-watch show. Treat yourself this weekend and watch it without wasting more time.

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