Carter Barnes was born in the unenviable position as the middle child of the Barnes clan on a sweltering Fourth of July day at Brooklyn Methodist Hospital. He wouldn't realize until later on that he was born into a family legacy with each generation having paid respect to their country by serving in the military. Carter's grandfather who happened to be a veteran of the Second World War would often claim that he could trace the Barnes family's military service back to the Civil War where thankfully they fought with the Union rather than the Confederacy. As a young boy, Carter couldn't quite comprehend the gravity of war and serving one's country. What he did comprehend was that he had a transient childhood for the first ten years of his life, moving from military base to military base with a father in the air force. It was the same cycle time and time again; move, get the lay of the land, make friends, feel settled, and then be uprooted again once his dad got "the call".
It was a given that Carter would eventually follow in the footsteps of his grandfather, father, uncles, and his oldest brother who enlisted in the military around the time of the Gulf War and the operation to liberate Kuwait from Iraqi control. As Carter grew older, he understood what freedoms that his relatives before him had fought for and that it was quite the sacrifice with one of his Uncles losing his life during the Gulf War. But Carter had always been someone who even as a child was a bit on the cautious side. He had experienced how his mother had nearly jumped out of her skin every time there was a phone call or a knock on the door. It was a relief for the family when they had made their final move to Richmond, Virginia and Carter's father had gotten a rather stable and safe job working for the state. Carter wanted a life outside of the military at an early age in spite of being enrolled in the JROTC once he made his way to secondary school.
He'll never tell his dad to this day that he hated every second of JROTC and would have preferred to play baseball. Of course, it was easier to keep this under lock and key when the colonel that Carter served under told his father that he had a dutiful son who took orders well.
His upbringing had instilled an altruistic streak on him, that neverending desire to feel as though he was put on this earth to help people in some way, shape, or form that didn't necessarily involve basic training and deployments. It was a hard day in the Barnes household when Carter told his family rather than enlisting in the military when he turned eighteen that he would prefer to go to college. He may not have had a plan on what he wanted to major in but he wanted to see what was out there. In a strange turn of events, Carter did not receive the tongue lashing and lecture of a decade from his hard-ass of a father but instead a firm nod and admiration for being strong in his convictions.
Of course, if his father knew half of the things Carter did during his freshman year of college and no longer being under his father's thumb, there's a good chance that there would be a tongue lashing nearly twenty years after getting accepted at Arizona State University.
Carter fell into psychology accidentally. He'd been looking to pad his class schedule with an elective and had been deciding between psychology and sociology. One coin flip later and he was a bright-eyed freshman soaking up every word in Psych 101. At first when he had declared during winter break that he was going to be a psychology major, Carter's parents thought this was both a passing fancy as well as not the best career move on his part. If he wanted a stable job, he'd need further schooling but once again Carter stuck to his guns. He explained that if all else failed, he'd only need his masters to become a licensed social worker but he was aiming higher - maybe not being a psychiatrist because Carter knew there really wasn't any way he could survive medical school.
Instead in 2003, Carter made the trek to Boston University after earning his bachelors degree and set his sights on earning his masters and doctorate. Much to his father's delight, Carter often lent his services to the local VA with so many soldiers coming back from Iraq and Afghanistan with PTSD. Carter took on a friendly yet stern approach with any patients that came his way but found ways to be innovative and deviate from standard talk therapy. Carter was a decent artist who knew that pursuing a career in art wasn't sensible at a young age but learned about the merits of art therapy. After graduating with his doctorate in 2011, Carter decided to stay in Boston to become a board-certified psychologist.
These days, Carter works at a local practice with a revolving door of regular clients that he tends to. He's more devoted to his career much to the chagrin of his family who is less than pleased that instead of a wife and child that Carter dotes on a rescue dog by the name of Ollie.