Rachel Bloom Reveals Her Character Will Get a Diagnosis in Season 3 of 'Crazy Ex-Girlfriend'
Like many shows, “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend” addresses mental health without giving its main character, Rebecca Bunch, an “official” diagnosis.
Although the word “crazy” in its title is supposed to be tongue and cheek, much of the storyline revolves around how Rebecca’s mental health affects her life — like when she dumps out all her prescribed medication after moving to West Covina, California to start her new life, frustrates her therapist by only hearing what she wants to hear and self-destructs whenever something goes her way. We watch Rebecca swing from anxious to depressed, but it was never clear if the show was going to address her implied undiagnosed mental illness.
Rachel Bloom, the show’s star and creator, told TV Guide that in order to diagnose Rebecca, she sought the guidance of a therapist, adding:
We went through the steps [with the therapist] and the more we thought about it, there was one particular diagnosis [that felt right]. And not to say that everything’s cut and dry. Almost every diagnosis has shades of other diagnoses… But we realized that we, in writing a character based on the most extreme versions of ourselves and also based on other people we just met, we inadvertently fell into this certain diagnosis. So that was very interesting.
We were fixated on the diagnosis, but what the therapist said is, you know, therapists care about diagnosis, but what they really care about is treatment. What’s going to help this person feel good, whether it’s the kind of technique that we’re going to use in therapy; if they need to go on medication, what kind? So it’s not as cut and dry as ‘you are your diagnosis. You are the thing.’ And I think Rebecca is someone who has defined herself by outside labels her entire life, so I think that giving her a diagnosis is very interesting because that’s going to give her an identity, but also mess with her identity.
The topic of mental illness is a personal one for Bloom. She’s written an essay in Glamour about her anxiety and recently participated in the Child Mind Institute’s My Younger Self campaign, giving advice to her younger self about living with anxiety and depression. In comedy routines, she’s joked about her obsessive compulsive disorder, using humor to talk about what she called the darkest time of her life — proving she’s no stranger to mental illness or its treatments.
“Crazy Ex-Girlfriend” returns Friday, October 13 at 8:00 PM ET on The CW.
Do you think it’s important for Rebecca to get an official diagnosis? Share your thoughts in the comments below.