State of Mind

TV review by
Sierra Filucci, Common Sense Media
State of Mind TV Poster Image
Smart, juicy session of office drama for adults.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.

Positive Messages

Main characters are generally good, well-meaning people with normal flaws. Some clients struggle with mental or behavioral problems. Extramarital affairs occur without clear moral lessons or boundaries.


Discussion of physical and sexual abuse, including pedophilia. One character accidentally hits another with a car, without injury.


Adults engage in sexual relationships, sometimes extramaritally. Sex sounds are audible. Sexual situations are visible, including partial undress -- but no nudity. Discussions of sexual problems in relationships. In one scene, a woman walks in on her husband having sex with another woman.


Frequent mild to moderate profanity, such as "ass," "bitch," "bastard," and "dammit."

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Rare social drinking. Potential for the discussion of psychiatric medicines.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that since this adult-oriented drama centers on therapists, their personal relationships, and their clients, much of the material relates to relationship struggles, personal crises, and mental health problems. Scenes include emotional break-ups, reconciliations, and conflicts. Sex scenes include some enthusiastic sounds and images of characters partially undressed (but no nudity). Relationships between colleagues sometimes tread into sexual or romantic territory and are sometimes extramarital. There are discussions of pedophilia and sexual abuse, including rape. Adults curse frequently (though, since this is regular cable, the strongest words are generally along the lines of "bitch" and "ass") and occasionally drink socially.

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What's the story?

In STATE OF MIND, Lili Taylor stars as a psychiatrist working in a close-knit practice where personal and professional struggles intermingle. Airing on Lifetime -- which is known for its female-friendly fare, not to mention a knack for the melodramatic -- this funny, charming drama rises above its corny colleagues to provide a smart, quirky treat.

Is it any good?

Taylor's character, Dr. Ann Bellows, is whip-smart, insightful, and compassionate. She also undergoes a personal crisis when she discovers her husband cheating on her with their couples' counselor. As Ann processes the situation, leaning on friends and colleagues, she gains new insight into herself and relationships in general. Good writing and a stellar cast keep the subject matter from dipping into sappy waters.

While Ann is the show's anchor, her colleagues are equally rich characters who have to deal with their own big issues. In one episode, for example, fellow therapist Dr. James LeCroix (Derek Riddell) struggles to meet the needs of a young, abused Russian adoptee and his seemingly shallow parents. One scene includes a passionate speech lamenting our culture's pedophilia paranoia. With themes firmly planted in adult territory, State of Mind is best for adults, though older teens probably won't see anything new or shocking.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about how media depicts therapy. Based on TV shows and movies, what kind of person would you expect to go to therapy? To be a therapist? How accurate do you think that mental picture is? Does this show give you a different view of therapists? What are family members' opinions about therapy and its usefulness?

TV details

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