Good Grief is the third episode of the sixth season and the 101st overall episode of Private Practice.

Short SummaryEdit

After hearing a patient's chilling confession, Violet turns to Sheldon for advice. Meanwhile, Addison tries to keep her grief a secret, Cooper and Charlotte adapt to their new reality and Sam confronts Sheldon about his denial.

Full SummaryEdit

Violet is attending a grief group, where a woman is reading from a book about grief. One of the other people asks Violet what stage of grief she's in. Violet doubts.

Jake walks by the bathroom, carrying Henry, and hears Addison crying inside. He asks if she's okay. She claims she is and says she'll be right out. While Jake goes downstairs to warm up a bottle for Henry, Addison wipes her tears.

Stephanie is telling Sam about her life, ending with the fact that she met this really hot doctor. She kisses Sam and tells him it's his turn. He claims he doesn't want to bore her and tries to distract her with kissing, but she insists on hearing his autobiography, cliff notes version. He says he was born. He kisses her and then says he grew up. After kissing her again, he says he became this really hot doctor. She agrees and they continue kissing.

While having cereal for breakfast in front of the television, Cooper and Mason discuss cartoons. Charlotte interrupts, telling Mason to go prep for school. Cooper touches her stomach and tells her he hopes they behave in there today. She doesn't want him to do that. He brings up that she's 12 weeks along, which is when people costumarily tell other people. She says she's not people and tells him she'll be busy at the hospital all day, pulling a double shift to cover the ER. Before she leaves, he asks for a kiss, but she only pats him on cheek, because a kiss is what got her in this situation in the first place.

Violet's in her house with Lucas, where mover is taking the last boxes outside. Violet tells Lucas they'll go to their new house now and unpack right away, so he can build a fort with the boxes afterwards. Violet asks if he's ready, but he isn't yet. He asks where his daddy is as he would like to see him. Violet asks him if he remembers how they talked about how daddy is now in heaven with Mufasa from The Lion King. Lucas does, but he keeps on insisting to see daddy, thinking Pete will just come later. Violet doesn't know what to say, so they just say bye bye to their house instead.

Addison meets Amelia in the kitchen at the practice. They talk about Mark and how he was like a brother to them. Except that I did it with him, Amelia says. Amelia says two of the men she slept with died, but Addison had both Pete and Mark dying in the same week, so she thinks Amelia's in the clear. "In the clear about what?" Jake asks as he enters the room. Addison doesn't reply and claims she has to work. Amelia explains to him that all this is about Mark Sloan. Jake says he's sorry, knowing how close they've all become.

Sam walks in with Cooper, talking about what happened with Stephanie. He wants to be honest with her, but he doesn't want to reveal too much just yet. Amelia points out there's a lot in his past, especially with his ex-girlfriend, who happens to be his ex-wife's best friend, living next door. Charlotte says secrets will only get him into trouble, which Cooper finds ironic given her not wanting to tell other people about the pregnancy. While Jake and Amelia give some more advice, Sam leaves the room without anyone noticing. 

Sam enters Sheldon's office to follow up on his test results, but Sheldon snaps he's got it covered. He's angry because he just wanted a regular physical, but Sam decided to run a P.S.A. test which changed the trajectory of Sheldon's life. Sam explains he did this because Sheldon had trouble urinating. The test results don't necessarily indicate prostate cancer. Sheldon interrupts him and says he didn't want to know. Most men die with prostate cancer, not of it. Sam points out the problem is not gonna go away by ignoring it, but Sheldon wants to try ignoring Sam.

Violet's in her office talking with a patient who has anger issues. He gets angry out of nothing for the most random things and then has trouble behaving himself. Violet says there's no simple trick as anger is not a habit. They need to find the underlying cause, which can be a number of things, one of them is guilt. Adam asks information about the doctor-patient confidentiality. When he's sure it'll stay between them, he confesses he shot someone 11 years ago.

At the grief group, a man is talking about how he couldn't tell his backpacking daughter that her mother had died. Violet understands what he's talking about.

Adam is in Violet's office, telling her a more detailed version of the murder. It was robbery, which he committed in order to be able to buy food for himself and his little brother, because they were abandoned by their parents. He doesn't know what happened to the guy he shot as he ran off after shooting him, and he claims he doesn't need to know.

Charlotte finishes up with a patient in the ER. Cooper comes over with lunch for Charlotte. He knows she doesn't have time to have lunch together, but he wants to make sure she eats food with a proper nutritional value. Charlotte however is more focused on her work. Cooper's downloaded an app with all sorts of information on the babies, so he knows they're the size of plums now. He notices she's busy and suggests she just hire an ER attending. She claims it takes time to find the right person, but he says she's just picky. He reminds her the babies need her to rest. She takes the lunch bag and walks off.

Sheldon meets up with Violet, who tells him about her patient. She thinks the guilt is eating Adam alive. She's looking into the case. Sheldon reminds her she's a psychiatrist, not a detective, so looking into it behind his back is just a betrayal of Adam's trust and without the trust, the patient can't engage in therapy. Violet thinks that if the man is still alive, the good news will lift a huge burden off Adam. However, Sheldon thinks that if it's bad news, Violet's thinking of Adam will be colored. He advises her to keep this Pandora's box unopened. 

Jake enters Addison's office to check up on her. She's not okay, although she doesn't mean to be not okay. He understands she's lost someone. She claims it's just the way it is: people die. As she's on her way to the birthing suit, Jake says he's always there for her if she needs to talk. Addison thinks he might be an actual saint.

While Violet is unwrapping a present, Cooper already tells her a teakettle is inside. She wants to ask him about her patient, but decides not to. She asks him how he's doing. He's good, although he'd be better if he saw the mother of his triplets more. He thinks she's running herself into the ground. Violet says work is a good way to keep your mind occupied. From bad things, Cooper says. Violet points out that in a year, Charlotte's gone from being no mother to being a mother of a 9 year old and 3 babies. That's a nightmare for a normal woman, and Charlotte is Charlotte after all. Violet thinks Charlotte will come around.

At home, Violet is watching the news report on the murder on her computer. The victim died, leaving behind a woman and two young children.

At the grief group, a woman talks about how she got a call on her deceased husband's phone. It was a woman saying that she loved him. He'd had an affair for 2 years. She's mourning his loss, but she hates him. Violet seemingly can also relate to that.

Addison brings Violet tea. Violet is clearing out Pete's office, as there's no point in putting off. Violet thinks there are way more than 5 stages of grief. Addison says she's emotionally cheating on Jake with Mark. Even though they haven't talked in months, she can't stop crying over his death. Violet says it's normal to mourn someone you loved while being in love with someone else. Addison says it feels very crowded inside of her. Violet suggests she talk to Jake about it, but Addison doesn't want to open the door to her history of cheating. Violet says everyone has a past. She just has to own it.

Stephanie sees Sam and runs up to him to kiss him. She asks him to have dinner together tonight, but he can't. Since she doesn't know that much about him, she just guesses why he can't. She wonders if it's a date with an old flame. He's offended when she suggests this and leaves to get back to his office.

Adam is talking to Violet about how telling someone about the murder has him feeling relieved. She's not really paying attention he snaps her back into reality. She claims she's suddenly not feeling very well and asks him to cut this session short. He makes a new appointment for tomorrow, because he really feels like he's getting somewhere. He says he hopes she'll feel better soon and leaves.

Violet has just told Sheldon about what happened. He says she's digging into her patient's past because she couldn't get closure in her marriage. Violet says maybe closure will help the patient, but Sheldon warns her that it's not her place to tell him, because he'll have to live with the fact that he's a murderer. She knows she screwed up, which is why she came to him. She doesn't know what to tell Adam if not the truth. Pete's death has thrown her off her game. Sheldon says she has to refer Adam to another psychiatrist. Walking away is all she can do. 

At the grief group, a woman is talking about a relative of hers being on life support. Two doctors said she's brain dead, a third said that miracles happen, so she doesn't know what to do. Her relative never gave up on anything, so how can she now give up on her?

Jake sits down with Addison on the deck. She's listening to the sound of the ocean. He asks her what's going on with her, because he feels like it's something he did. She assures him it's not him. She takes a moment and says he asked about Mark some time ago. He says he did, but it's clear she doesn't want to talk about him. She says that's not it. Jake has a very open and honest way of looking at her, and she's afraid he'll look at her differently if she tells him. He wonders why that would happen. She stands up and asks not to do this right now, but he stops her. He tried giving her time and space, but he's run out of patience. The monitor lets them hear that Henry's crying. Addison gets up and walks inside. Jake can't believe she's now using Henry as an excuse not to talk about Mark.

At St. Ambrose, Violet's in the locker room to clear out Pete's locker. Charlotte walks in and asks what she's doing. Violet says she was cleaning out Pete's locker. She needs a minute now. Charlotte opens her locker and sighs. She takes a gift out of it and says it's the other half of Violet's housewarming gift, as Cooper forgot to give it to her. Violet notices Charlotte looks exhausted. Cooper told her she's been working a lot. Charlotte figured also already told her about the pregnancy. She says that when the hospital's understaffed, it's her job to pitch in. Violet says it's also her job to hire someone. She says it's okay to replace Pete. Charlotte says that after she was raped, Pete was always there for her. He was like her work husband. He looked out for her and she misses that. She misses him, so she can't imagine what it's like for Violet. Violet says she's okay. She has to be, because she has a little boy at home who doesn't know where his father is. Lucas keeps asking her, even though Violet's always answered him. She gets he doesn't understand it, as he's a 3-year-old boy. She starts crying, but quickly gathers herself. She asks Charlotte how you make it right when you kill someone. Charlotte says that in AA, making amends is essential, but sometimes the other is gone or unwilling to forgive, so they need to live amends. Violet asks how you do that. Charlotte says by living the best life you can, helping everywhere and anyone you can. Be of service. You can't change what you've done, but you can change who you are and improve your life. It's hard to explain why, but living amends work. Sometimes, they set you free. Violet finishes clearing out the locker. As the last item, she takes out his stethoscope and hangs it around Charlotte's neck. As she takes the name tag off the door, she tears up again.

Jake's on Addison's balcony and tells Sam, who's standing on his, that he's sorry about Mark. He says Addison's taking it hard. Sam says she's gonna be sad for a while. Jake understands that, but he doesn't understand why she won't talk to him. He brings up he knows they were all friends back in the day. Sam is surprised she said that. Jake knows it might be weird, but he asks Sam to help him out by talking to her. Sam says that's not his job anymore and goes inside.

At the grief group, a crying woman who lost her son says she just lays in bed all day, hoping something's gonna change, because she just lost the best part of her life. Violet seems to understand.

Addison walks into the kitchen. Sam asks her if she's doing okay about Mark. Addison says no. Between him and Pete, she's sad all the time and it's probaby not the best thing to hide in the bathroom crying. Sam suggests to talk about it instead of hide. Addison asks if she can talk to him. He suggests she talks to Jake instead, because not talking to him about Mark is a problem. Addison says it's not Sam's business. Sam agrees, but Jake's making it his business. Sam notices she keeps doing the same thing over and over. They've both screwed up all of their relationships, so he suggests she tries to do something differently for this one. Addison asks him if he's doing it differently. He doesn't know what to say, so he leaves.

Cooper finds Charlotte sleeping on a gurney. She didn't come home and she didn't answer his texts, and then he called the hospital every hour to make sure somebody had seen her alive, but half an hour ago she disappeared. So he ran over here. Charlotte says she's fine, but he says she has to let him protect her and her children, because that's his job. He can't be fine as long as she's not fine. He walks off.

Sam finds Sheldon. He knows Sheldon doesn't want to talk about it anymore, but he can refer him to other doctors to do the biopsy. Sheldon says his father had prostate cancer. Sam knows that, as his family history was one of the reasons he did the exam. Sheldon says the cancer didn't kill his father, but it changed him a lot. He became a dead man walking. He gave up. It was the most depressing thing he's ever seen and he doesn't want it to happen to him. Sam says it won't, but Sheldon insists he doesn't know that for sure.

Adam says he's changed his life. It's different. Violet says he's obviously still carrying around what he did. He agrees, but he's feeling better. Violet says it's a little too soon for that. She doesn't allow him to speak and asks if he's ever thought about the man that he shot. What if he had a family? A son who doesn't understand why his father isn't ever coming home? He may have ruined a family. Violet wonders what kind of person can walk around with that for years and feel okay. Adam breaks down and apologizes. Violet comes back to her senses and realizes she really crossed the line. She begins pacing and apologizes. Adam says she was right. He now wants to know if he's a murderer or not. Violet says he doesn't have to, as there's obviously a reason he hasn't found out already. She says she's going through some stuff of her own and she let her own needs blend with his, which is wrong. She says he needs to go see another therapist. Adam asks what he can do if he really killed the man. Violet says he's already doing it: living his life differently, better. Being a better person will set him free.

A man at the grief group is talking about his wife's passing. She was his whole world. When he called his son, the first thing his son said to him was that he loved him. He hadn't said that since he was a child. They have become closer over the past month, and his son has become a phenomenal man. He knows he supposed to be grieving, but he's happy instead because he got his son back.

Jake brings Violet tea. He asks how she's doing as Sam walks in with tea too. They start whispering to each other about changes to their schedule and it's obvious they arranged to come see her at different times. Violet asks what's going on here. The two men remain silent.

Violet walks into Amelia's office with the cups of tea and says she owes her one for the babysitting club she organized. Amelia asks what she's talking about. Violet says Jake and Sam outed her after she asked why everyone kept bringing her tea. Amelia sighs. She said to bring her tea or something, she didn't know they were gonna take it this literal. Amelia tells Violet that in the beginning, everyone is there for you, but then they forget, thinking life moves on for everyone. Amelia understands well that life may not be moving on for her right now, so she wanted to make sure she was okay. Violet gets emotional and thanks her before leaving the office.

Charlotte comes home and sits down with Cooper on the couch. She says she misses Pete. Everything is changing. She hired a new ER doc today and in an effort to be slightly less difficult, she has a deal. She will allow him to talk to her belly once a day. She tells him not to get weird or rub and kiss the belly like she's some kind of host. He agrees. He greets his babies and says he can't wait to meet them. He wants them to know they're always gonna be loved and kisses the belly anyway.

Stephanie has arrived at Sam's house and asks what's so important that he needed her to come over. He asks if she wants something to drink. All she wants is to know why he was such an ass yesterday.  He apologizes and says he's screwed up all his relationships. He doesn't want to be the guy she's talking about in bed with the next guy. She's offended that he suggests that she moves on that quickly and wants to leave, but he stops her. He says he likes her. They kiss.

Jake is working on his computer as Addison comes downstairs. She says she'd like to talk now. She says she loved Mark Sloan and it happend while she was still married to Derek. He got her pregnant, the one time she was or ever will be pregnant, but she couldn't keep it at the time with him being the father. It's karma for this awful thing she did to Derek. Her past is ugly and messy and unflattering, so if he doesn't think he can trust her anymore because she's an awful person, he should go if he feels like he should. She asks him to do it now if he's going to do it, because she can't spend time wondering when it'll happen. He asks for some time to process. He first thanks her for telling him the truth. He also says she's not a cheater, she's a person who cheated once. He thinks there's a difference. And then he says he's sorry for her loss. Addison starts crying. Jake takes her hand to comfort her.

It's Violet's turn to talk at the group grief. She says she's a therapist, so she's supposed to know how these things work. She's counceled people between the stages of grief, and she knows they all look different on everyone. Some people never go through any of them, some stay stuck in one for a very long time. She wishes it were more easy. She says her son is three and that he doesn't understand what's going on. Intellectually, she understands that, but every time he asks where his dad is, she has to remember to breathe. It's always the same thing. She tucks him in, she says she loves him and he says it back, and then he asks where his dad is. She's almost gotten used to it, but last night it felt different. 

In her new house, Violet's tucking Lucas in. She gives him a stuffed toy that'll keep him safe. She says she loves him. Lucas says he loves her too. He then looks up and says he loves his daddy too.

At the grief group, Violet says her son has reached acceptance. He knows his dad is never coming home, and that breaks her heart. She starts crying and a woman gives her a tissue.


  • Addison Montgomery
  • Jake Reilly
  • Cooper Freedman
  • Charlotte King
  • Sheldon Wallace
  • Amelia Shepherd
  • Mason Warner
  • Sam Bennett
  • Violet Turner
  • Stephanie Kemp
  • Gabi Rivera
  • Jim Wallace
  • Jerry Murphy
  • Adam Stanfield
  • Stacey Meyer
  • Kasey Smith
  • Counselor
  • Mover
  • ER Nurse
  • Lucas Wilder
  • Henry Montgomery

Main CastEdit

Guest StarsEdit


Medical NotesEdit

Grief GroupEdit

  • Diagnosis:
  • Doctors:
    • Counselor
  • Treatment:
    • Grief counseling

Violet attended a grief group with several others who had lost a loved one. Each of them talked about the loss they'd experienced.

Sheldon WallaceEdit

  • Diagnosis:
    • Prostate cancer
  • Treatment:

Sheldon didn't want to face his test results, but Sam kept asking him about them.

Adam StanfieldEdit

  • Diagnosis:
  • Treatment:
    • Talk therapy

Adam, 29, had anger issues, so he came to talk to Violet about them. Adam was reluctant to talk to her about his past, but after she assured him he could share, he admitted that he'd shot someone 11 years prior. He'd tried to rob the man to get money to feed himself and his little brother, but the man lunged at him, so he shot and then he ran. He never found out what happened to the man and said he didn't need to know. Despite this, Violet looked it up and found out that the man had died. Adam said that telling her made it feel like a weight had been lifted off of him. When Violet had an inappropriate outburst knowing what had happened with the man, she said she couldn't continue seeing him and referred him to another therapist.

ER PatientEdit

  • Diagnosis:
    • Laceration
  • Treatment:

Charlotte told a nurse to dress the wound and get an x-ray for a patient in the ER.

Lydia RigginsEdit

  • Diagnosis:
    • Infertility
    • Pregnancy
  • Treatment:

Lydia was a patient of Jake's who had been trying to get pregnant for 18 months and was finally successful.


Song Performer Scene
"Wooden Chair" Angus Stone
  • Violet attends her grief group.
  • Jake checks on a crying Addison.
  • Stephanie tells Sam about her past boyfriends.
  • Mason and Cooper discuss a TV show.
  • Charlotte and Cooper talk about the pregnancy. She leaves for the hospital.
"All" The Howls
  • Addison flees from her talk with Jake about Mark.
  • Violet clears out Pete's locker. Charlotte comes in and they talk about Pete and his work at the hospital.
  • Charlotte tells her about living amends.
  • Sam and Jake talk about Addison mourning Mark.
"Ordinary World" Cary Brothers
  • Stephanie and Sam make up.
  • Addison finally tells Jake about her past.
  • Violet speaks at the grief group.
  • Lucas reaches acceptance.

Notes and TriviaEdit

Private Practice 6x03 Promo "Good Grief" (HD)

Private Practice 6x03 Promo "Good Grief" (HD)

  • This episode scored 6.00 million viewers.
  • This episode is focused on Violet.
  • This episode is KaDee Strickland's 100th appearance as Dr. Charlotte King.
  • This is the last episode to feature Violet's house, where she's lived since the beginning of the show.


Episode StillsEdit

Behind the ScenesEdit


Violet: My son has reached acceptance. He knows his daddy's never coming back, and it breaks my heart.

Charlotte: You can't change what you've done, but you can change who you are and improve your life.

See AlsoEdit

A complete overview of this episode's crew can be found here.

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