I was frankly shocked when I read the following paragraph by Giovanni Fazio in his June 24 review of the movie “Hesher“: “Hesher” stands in opposition to the modern American obsession with pop-psych, and the rather misguided idea that endlessly talking about one’s feelings will help one deal with them. T.J.’s father stands as an example of this approach’s failure: He forces his son to go to group therapy, only to watch the boy resentfully retreat further into himself. (Dad himself is popping Prozac to deal with his grief.)”
These sweeping statements on the counseling experience are not only, if I may say, stupid but also reckless. They are not what I would expect to see on a respected news organization’s website like that of the The Japan Times.
Fazio’s remarks sound as if he tried some type of therapy at some point and, for whatever reason, it didn’t work for him. To make these types of comments about a field that has helped so many shows a total lack of professionalism as a journalist.
The real reason that this is so disturbing is that at this time in Japan there are so many survivors of the March 11 earthquake and tsunami who could greatly benefit from what Fazio so glibly dismisses. It seems to me that even The Japan Times has reported on recent efforts to make counseling available to the victims of this unprecedented disaster.
As someone who has been fortunate to have experienced the enormous benefits of counseling therapy, I sincerely hope to see more positive articles on efforts to help Japanese people realize that this field could greatly help them deal with the aftermath of the catastrophe they are dealing with.
The opinions expressed in this letter to the editor are the writer’s own and do not necessarily reflect the policies of The Japan Times.
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