getting adequately close to Dr. Quinlan and, indeed,
any other individual with whom he comes in contact.
Hence, he resents his father a great deal. Hence, his
capacity for normal relations with other individuals is
diminished. Hence, he resents feeling powerless and not
being able to control his own life. Hence, when Michael
wants to act out in protest of his figurative lack of
control in life, he does so by becoming, quite
literally, out of control.
We know from subsequent incidents that Michael, especially while under the influence of drugs and alcohol, will go to reckless and self-destructive lengths. Case in point number one is Michael's arrest in Windham, New York, on March 5, 1978. From a Thomas Sheridan memo on the incident: Through the influence of heavy drinking or smoking pot or a combination of both, Michael panicked and became involved in a drunken driving and reckless driving incident... On that occasion, he was driving--without a license--the Skakel family jeep station wagon and he was accompanied by a young woman named Debbie Diehl, who is approximately 21 years of age. She and her family have been friends of the Skakel's [Skakels'] at Windham for several years and she has the reputation of being a little bit of a swinger. In any event, after a wild chase by the town police, Michael ended up crashing the car into a telephone pole. The car is practically a total wreck. Michael and his passenger escaped unscathed.
Dr. Quinlan says Michael's impulse control is "marginally adequate." I say, it is even less so.
Sheridan continues: The facts relating to the pleading and disposition of those charges in Windham are not pertinent to this memo. Suffice it to say that an adjournment in contemplation of dismissal has been obtained upon the condition that Michael attend the Elan school at Poland Springs in Maine for at least six months. What should be noted, however, is the fact that in my interviewing of Michael on that occasion, he was obviously a disturbed person and hooked on either booze or pot. He showed little or no remorse for having nearly killed the companion in his car and when confronted with the potential problem of a subsequent conviction for drunken driving, his only comment was, "Next time I won't get caught."
So once again, after Michael acts out by wreaking havoc, the influence of his father manages the situation by imposing order (and damage control) from above. Let's not kid ourselves. Just about any other kid racing away from police, while drunk, and crashing into public property, would have gotten far worse than an adjournment in contemplation of dismissal. Dismiss those charges? Simply incredible-simply Skakel. Michael, of course, must then bend to the consequences of how someone else is handling his actions--once again reaffirming his mindset of helpless dependency. In any event, approximately a week later, Michael was in effect taken into custody (after a wild chase) by the staff from Elan and he is a resident there to this day. Simply put, all the wild chases in the world will not pull this young man away from his arrested state of development.
Dr. Quinlan adds: Under conditions of increasing depression or with an increase in overt