Wednesday, September 04, 2013

Bad therapism advice

Here is some bad newspaper advice:
Dear Annie: My college-age daughter is very hard on herself. "Sharyn" is a beautiful, intelligent and wonderful person at heart, but she cannot see it, even though everyone else does.

For 12 years, Sharyn has been in some form of therapy. ...

I tell Sharyn repeatedly that I love her and am proud of her, but she accuses me of lying. I'm frustrated and heartbroken that she believes these things when she has come so far. What else can I possibly do to help my daughter understand that she is a wonderful person who deserves happiness? — Peace Bound Parent

Dear Parent: ... These issues are best addressed in therapy. ... You also can get some therapy on your own and develop some coping strategies.
This is the evil of therapism. I might hate my parents also if they put me in psycho-therapy for 12 years.

Therapy should make progress towards some reasonable goal, or be terminated. I have heard of parents who send their kids into long-term psycho-therapy without even knowing what the issues are. That seems like an abdication of parental responsibilities to me. And the therapist is corruptly undermining the parents.

The other letters are bad also. Annie tells a woman to dump a boyfriend because he still communicates with an ex on Facebook. Another letter corrects Annie's misunderstanding of Viagra.

This week's flamebait comes from feminist lawyer Betsy Karasik in a Wash. Post op-ed:
As protesters decry the leniency of Rambold’s sentence — he will spend 30 days in prison after pleading guilty to raping 14-year-old Cherice Morales, who committed suicide at age 16 — I find myself troubled for the opposite reason. I don’t believe that all sexual conduct between underage students and teachers should necessarily be classified as rape, and I believe that absent extenuating circumstances, consensual sexual activity between teachers and students should not be criminalized. ...

I’ve been a 14-year-old girl, and so have all of my female friends. When it comes to having sex on the brain, teenage boys got nothin’ on us. When I was growing up in the 1960s and ’70s, the sexual boundaries between teachers and students were much fuzzier. Throughout high school, college and law school, I knew students who had sexual relations with teachers. To the best of my knowledge, these situations were all consensual in every honest meaning of the word, even if society would like to embrace the fantasy that a high school student can’t consent to sex. Although some feelings probably got bruised, no one I knew was horribly damaged and certainly no one died. ...

If religious leaders and heads of state can’t keep their pants on, with all they have to lose, why does society expect that members of other professions can be coerced into meeting this standard?
Half the the time feminists are demanding various sexual freedoms, and the other half the time they are complaining about the consequences of those freedoms.

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