‘The Resident’: How Far Will Ian Go to Hide His Addiction? (RECAP)

Andrew McCarthy in 'The Resident'
Spoiler Alert
Tom Griscom/FOX

The Resident

It Won't Be Like This for Long

Season 6 • Episode 4

[Warning: The below contains MAJOR spoilers for The Resident Season 6 Episode 4 “It Won’t Be Like This for Long.”]

If Dr. Ian Sullivan (Andrew McCarthy) keeps going like he is on The Resident, he will not be able to hide his addiction for much longer, no matter how clever he thinks he is.

After testing positive (and coming up with what he thought was a good excuse), he must provide another urine sample to the lab, but there’s one major problem: He’s going through withdrawal, and he’s very eager to get that done ASAP so he can take another pill. He tries to move up the test, but the technician won’t be in until 4 p.m. He even tries to use surgery as an excuse, but then he finds out he has to operate on a baby sooner rather than later (as in before 4 p.m.). With his hands shaking — and since he’s ducking into the bathroom to throw up — he’s even more worried about his next pill and that test. “Nine hours, take your test, then all the pills you want,” he tells himself.

And so Ian goes online and searches “ways to manipulate a drug test” (and apparently doesn’t worry about anyone checking his computer’s history at the hospital). He thinks he’s found exactly what he needs (artificial urine) and orders it, but then rather than arriving before his test, he gets an updated delivery time of 5:43 p.m. It gets worse when the tech is stuck in traffic and running late, and Ian has to wait at the lab, all while Dr. Billie Sutton (Jessica Lucas) is waiting for him to join her in the OR with the baby. With his hands shaking and Billie texting that she needs him now, Ian skips the test and goes to his office to take a pill. Still, he’s clearly not doing well in the OR and guides Billie through most of the surgery. After, she asks what happened, and he claims he was sick and it’s a long story. But Billie wants that long story, meaning someone else is taking notice.

So what about the drug test? Well, Ian steals a patient’s urine after checking he doesn’t have a history of drug use. Then, when he returns to his office after the test, he finds that package of artificial urine waiting for him, so he puts it in his desk. It doesn’t look like he’s planning to stop taking those pills anytime soon.

Ian’s withdrawal wreaks havoc on his relationship with his daughter, Dr. Cade Sullivan (Kaley Ronayne), who already suspects that he’s not telling her the truth. (She’s waiting for that second drug test result.) She even calls him out on the fact that he shouldn’t be operating, leading to him snapping at her: “You want me to admit it? I was a terrible father, that’s what you tell all your friends. You tell them I was a deadbeat, you had to raise yourself. … Sometimes you are not the victim, sometimes you are the problem. You make everyone around you feel like a failure, Ms. High and Mighty. Do you have any idea what having a daughter like that does to a man?” Uh-oh. “I’m sorry I’m such a disappointment to you, Ian,” Cade tells him before leaving his office.

And then we have to feel for Cade when she talks to the baby’s mother, an addict, and shares a bit of her own history. “Trust me, I know what [abusing drugs] looks like,” Cade says. “At every soccer game or piano recital, Jane will look out into the crowd and see every parent there out hers, and she’ll hate herself for it. She’ll spend the rest of her life wondering why her mother chose a fix over a relationship with her daughter. She’ll have a hard time trusting people, making friends, and falling in love because how could she believe anyone could love her if her own mother doesn’t? I’m begging you, don’t do that to Jane. She doesn’t deserve it.” Poor Cade! Will Ian be able to fix their relationship?

The Resident, Tuesdays, 8/7c, Fox