Is Jecht abusive or not? Many people say “no” because Jecht only acts out of love. Others say “yes” because what he does is terrible. So this argument is whether the means justify the ends, or whether the means are an end to themselves.
Despite his numerous flaws, Jecht is a good man at heart. He criticizes Tidus in the hope of encouraging him to try harder and disprove him. Jecht does love Tidus, but struggles expressing it: a sentimental message to Tidus on an sphere is cut off with Jecht mumbling, “Remember, you’re my son. And… well, uh… never mind. I’m no good at these things“. A flashback shows Jecht telling Braska and Auron his dream is to train Tidus into a star blitzball player like himself.
But no matter how you feel about Jecht’s action, to critically analyze them seems to suggest a severe personality disorder…
Borderline Personality Disorder. People with borderline personality disorder are unstable in several areas, including interpersonal relationships, behavior, mood, and self-image. Abrupt and extreme mood changes, stormy interpersonal relationships, an unstable and fluctuating self-image, unpredictable and self-destructive actions characterize the person with the borderline personality disorder. These individuals generally have great difficulty with their own sense of identity. They often experience the world in extremes, viewing others as either “all good” or “all bad.” A person with borderline personality may form an intense personal attachment with someone only to quickly dissolve it over a perceived slight. Fears of abandonment may lead to an excessive dependency on others. Self-mutilation or recurrent suicidal gestures may be used to get attention or manipulate others. Impulsive actions, chronic feelings of boredom or emptiness, and bouts of intense inappropriate anger are other traits of this disorder, which is more common among females.
Jecht, as we know, is more than just a simple daredevil. He engages in risky behavior such as binge drinking (to the point of being an alcoholic). He frequently displays intense anger. We don’t really know if Jecht feels empty inside. But his constant stress wears him down (emotionally, and possibly physically at times). His firebrand personality suggests he has abrupt mood changes. This is mostly due to his stress of being a burn out sports star.
Jecht is surly, arrogant and a bully. He frequently refers to himself as “The Great Jecht” (Jecht-sama in the Japanese releases, giving himself a respectful, in this case arrogant, honorific), and is known to Spira as “Sir Jecht” for being a famous guardian. Jecht considers himself the best blitzball player there is and loves fame and glamor, asking Braska several times if there will be celebratory events on their pilgrimage. Jecht’s career hit a slump when he began drinking, and it was rumored he was going to retire, though he was quick to deny this and claimed he could quit drinking if he chose. Jecht used to be emotionally abusive to Tidus, giving him the nickname “crybaby”, and otherwise brushing him off or berating him.
On a facetious note, turning into Sin may suggest his unstable or fragile self-image. On a less facetious note, his actions as Sin are symbolic of his mood swings.