Doctor-in-training Erica is dismayed to learn that her first patient is someone that she knows: her soon to be ex-brother-in-law, Josh MacIntosh, a man she neither understands or likes. Despite she realizing that Josh needs help, Erica hates him even more after Samantha's vitriolic verbal attacks about their bitter divorce proceedings. To help Erica help Josh, Dr. Tom sends her back to the incident when she first realized that she hated him, which was a trip in 1998 by Erica, Sam, Josh and Jenny to Fort Lauderdale to visit Erica and Sam's grandmother. Erica tries to use this trip revisited as her opportunity to make a real connection with Josh. But Erica learns that she not only has to make a connection, but in the process truly understand what Josh is all about as a person, which may end up backfiring in her face. A reminder of another past incident between Erica and Josh may be able to provide Erica that much needed perspective.
Full Plot Edit
Erica turns around and it's Josh, her first patient. Josh: I come to Toronto and the first person I see is you. He's here to finalize his divorce. The conversation is rocky; Erica looks at her therapist card, and says wait, let's talk. Josh says Why? How about not. We'll never have to see each other again. He goes through the doors and Erica follows him... into Dr. Tom's office. She wants to know why? Dr. Tom: Why not Josh? Erica: I don't like him, I don't understand him. Dr. Tom: It's an opportunity to understand him better... Your first assignment is to help Josh move on with his life. Erica: How? Dr. Tom: You'll figure it out. Erica: I feel like you're setting me up to fail. Dr. Tom: "Failure is natures's plan to prepare you for great responsibilities. - Napoleon Hill." The process will not be easy, it's not meant to be. Erica wants to know if she's supposed to hand him a card, and ask him questions? Dr. Tom: Get on with your day, and the moment to jump in and help will arrive. Erica: How do I know? Dr. Tom: You'll know, trust me.
Erica has to go to work but Adam starts seducing her and they end up in bed. Afterwards she asks how many women has he slept with? More than 10? 20? 30? 40? We'll stop at 40. Adam says they didn't mean anything, it's different when you... love someone. I've never loved anyone before now.
Sam and Josh sign their divorce papers. Josh is surprised it was easier than he thought it would be. Sam wants to move on so they can be happy, and Josh says so you can be happy. They argue, Sam storms off and Josh follows. Lenin says get in the car, and tells Josh to back off. Sam: I am happy, Josh, for the first time in years. If you want to be mean and miserable, that's your choice.
At 50/50 Julianne and Erica interview assistants, disagree on the candidates, and settle on Erica's choice, Rachel, a quirky psychic who has experience.
Adam, Lenin, Erica, and Sam are having dinner and Erica learns about the altercation with Josh. Sam: There comes a point where you have to fight back and say enough is enough.
Erica goes to visit Josh. Erica: I'm not here to attack you, I'm here to help. Josh isn't ready to talk and slams the door in her face. She goes to the elevator and straight into Dr. Tom's office.
Erica: I hate that guy! I hate him and want to punch his smug little face! Dr. Tom tries to calm her and asks here where the hatred started. Erica: Spring break 1998, we were supposed to spend week in a condo in Ft. Lauderdale. Josh invited Sam, I invited Jenny. Sam got food poisoning and threw up on the conveyor belt, carry-on luggage and Jenny's new shoes. Instead of Josh staying in Toronto to take care of Sam, he flew down with us and was constantly wasted and naked by the pool. By the time Sam arrived Erica hated Josh. Before, she thought he was mildly annoying, but after that trip she saw him for what he is. Rude and crude.
Dr. Tom: Here's the thing. Each patient is chosen for a particular reason. They have something to teach you, and you have a way to help them. However, that can't happen without establishing a connection with Josh. Otherwise why would he trust you enough to open up? Erica bemoans: How? We have nothing in common. Dr. Tom: Lesson #1. "You are your patient." First build a bridge. Connect so you can do your job and help him move on. Erica finds herself at the airport and has Sam throw up in one of the bins. Sam can't make the flight. Erica: Josh, you can come with us, Sam can fly down when she's feeling better. Jenny is incredulous.
They're in Florida at Bubby's condo by the pool, full of old people. Jenny says no, this is not what I signed up for. Josh: Golden Girls gone wild! Erica says: it's a 10 minute walk to beach. Quit whining.
Jenny spots a hunk and goes to talk to him, Erica suggests to Josh they get their rays. A guy waves, and Erica wants to avoid him as she knows Mr. Rosenfeld is a lech. Josh drags her over. The guy says call me Barry, and asks if Josh is Erica's boyfriend? She says yes, Josh says no, they're just friends, and Erica loves older men. Barry says his first wife was 20 years younger than him. Erica decides she needs water and leaves.
Josh comes up, and says don't be mad. Erica asks why do you act like this? Josh was trying to have fun, a laugh, not trying to be mean. Jenny returns, having met Jesus, the hottest pool boy. He invited Erica and Jenny to a party, and Erica asks Josh if he has any plans. She'll go if Josh goes. Josh looks at her strangely.
At the party, Erica wants to talk to Josh. She suggests they take turns asking a question - it could be anything, and the other person has to answer. She asks about his Duran Duran tattoo, which happened because Josh got drunk one night. Josh asks why haven't you had a real boyfriend since high school? Erica: I don't know. I had or have a tendency to pick guys apart unfairly. Maybe deep down I don't know what I want, or didn't. He has a strange look on his face and says your turn to ask. Erica realizes this and asks what were you thinking, that's my question. Josh: I can't tell you all my secrets. Erica sees Dr. Tom and says she has to go to the bathroom. He's not off the hook.
Dr. Tom notes she seems to be making headway. Erica: In 1998 Josh is less bitter, more open, sort of funny. Dr. Tom: You sound surprised. Erica: Josh is an actual person, not the devil. I need to stop judging him, his bad qualities, and look toward his good qualities. You told me to build a bridge. She's puzzled when Dr. Tom hands her a spray can for ammunition. The girlfriend of the pool boy is irate and beats on Jenny. Erica and Jenny escape.
Erica and Josh are back at Bubby's condo, and Jenny is going to spend the night with Jesus. Erica to Josh: I'm glad we got to hang out tonight, I wish we'd done it sooner. She's exhausted and wants to sleep, Josh says it's not even midnight. She says no thanks, gives him a hug and he kisses her. She's shocked and says that was not an invitation, what is wrong with you?! and slams the door.
She comes out in the morning. Jenny comes in and tells Erica Josh is by the pool. Erica divulges that Josh kissed her last night and Jenny thinks he is a sneaky creep. Erica wants to confront him, Jenny thinks she's being too forgiving.
Erica goes to the pool to talk to Josh, he's reluctant and she says she's willing to give him the benefit of the doubt. He mentions beer goggles, and she says you're dating my sister, I need to understand. He then says Erica came on to him - the questions, the hug. He threatens to tell Sam she was drunk and horny and came on to him.
Erica returns to Dr. Tom's office and says: I can't work with him, he's toxic to the core. She wants to move on to another patient, and Dr. Tom finally says done. She returns to her apartment where Adam is waiting, and told him she was in Florida in 1998, and that things with Josh went pretty badly because she quit being his doctor. Adam says after one session? Did you think Dr. Tom and I worked out in the beginning? Dr. Tom didn't give up on me. You're a doctor. Erica: In training. Adam: Who just quit on her very first patient. I have no idea what it's like being a doctor, but Dr. Tom gave you Josh for a reason. He leaves for the night.
Erica sleeps on the couch and wakes up in the morning. She goes into Dr. Tom's office and tells him she wants to try again. Dr. Tom: OK. Then we have to start at the beginning. You are your patient. Erica: That's the problem, I don't understand. I'm nothing like him. You say that repeatedly. I would never act the way he does, ever. I open up, he shuts down or attacks me. Dr. Tom: You wouldn't do that. Really. So you are totally innocent? Erica returns to the blackout. Dr. Tom: This was an important night for you and Josh, this was the first time he opened up to you about how he felt.
Josh: You know how I met Sam? I switched lockers in grade 9. I liked this other girl, she and Sam were close. I used her to get to the other girl I liked, but it didn't work. Sam's a great girl. I just didn't love her. Sam could sense it, that my heart's not in it. From the beginning my heart has always wanted... Erica: Don't. No, stop talking, I don't want to hear it. I have to find Sam. You do not tell Sam. Ever. Josh: I won't. Erica leaves.
Dr. Tom and Erica see later that Josh is upset and crying, and Erica returns to Dr. Tom's office. Dr. Tom: Josh exposes himself, shares his feelings, he was vulnerable in a way that's excruciating, and you shut him down. You shut him up. Erica: I never meant to hurt him, and I certainly didn't do that on purpose. He does that on purpose. Dr. Tom: That's the distinction? He does it on purpose, you do it by accident? Erica, you're missing the point. You place Josh down here and you place yourself up here. you say that is not me, that I could never be like that. That person is other, undeserving, a monster. An old story, it's how wars begin, how people turn on each other. It starts so simply too. I am not you. I am nothing like you. And it is each time, a lie. Because underneath all the layers of fear and protection, at our core we are the same. We have the same needs. We carry the same capacity for good and evil. Erica: You are your patient. Dr. Tom: You are every patient you will ever have. And every person you will ever meet. Until you acknowledge you have the capacity for kindness and compassion but also heartlessness and cruelty, you'll never be able to help Josh.
Erica knocks on Josh's door. Josh is still defensive trying to make her go away. Erica: For a long time I thought I was better than you, that's how I acted, how I treated you, and I'm sorry. Sorry for the times I hurt you... I treated you the way I treated you because I wanted to put distance between us. I couldn't deal with you, I always felt it even before you told me. This thing between us we can't talk about affected our entire relationship. Josh: I'm divorcing Sam, not you. Erica: When you kissed me in FL I couldn't deal with your emotions. I treated you like a monster. But you're not. You were trapped inside something you couldn't find your way out of.
Josh: What do you want me to say? I don't want to say anything to you. He hesitates and then continues. Fine. It was awful. It sucked. I was the loser creep who wanted his sister-in-law. Does that make you feel better? Erica divulges: I felt like a loser ever since high school. I couldn't sustain a relationship, I couldn't find a career, I thought I would never be happy. I see things differently now. I see you differently now. There are a lot of ways in which we're sort of similar. Thanks for hearing me out. She goes to leave.
Josh stops her: Erica. Do you still feel trapped? She says no. What changed? She says I did. I spent years holding onto regrets, wishing I had done things differently. Once I let that go things got a lot better. She leaves.
Voiceover: "Have you ever felt at home in a crowd, like you were part of something bigger, and you felt this amazing energy that happens when people come together? How despite the superficial differences, you know that deep down we're all the same? We have the same secret needs, and the same wild dreams. We walk around thinking our secret pain our secret joy is so unique, when we want the same things. To be happy, to be safe, to be loved."
Josh is texting Sam: Sam, I've been thinking... Sam sighs and smiles.