Or sure as hell ought to be.
The most striking revelation about Elliot Rodger, the alleged Santa Barbara shooter, is that he had been in therapy for most of his life.
A family friend said Rodger had been seeing a therapist since the age of eight. Apparently he had visited a therapist "virtually every day" during his high school years. By the time of the massacre and suicide at the University of Santa Barbara over the weekend, when he was 22, Rodger reportedly had "multiple therapists."
Today it has been revealed that so central were his therapists to his daily existence that he emailed his hateful 141-page manifesto to them (and to his parents) 15 minutes before going on his stabbing and shooting spree.
I think Rodger's reported reliance on therapists from childhood through to adulthood deserves more analysis than it has so far received, because it potentially speaks to a dark side—a very dark side—of the modern therapy culture. There has been a mad dash to blame Rodger's actions on the misogynistic websites that he was known to visit, with some claiming these sites warped his mind and made him murderous. There has been far less focus on the therapy culture which by all accounts, and according to his family and friends, was a far more longstanding part of his life than his Internet habits.
Yes, he might have spent some late nights lurking on "men's rights" websites, but if the reports coming from those who knew him are to be believed, he spent 14 years visiting therapists.
To my mind, if we are going to say that any kind of "culture" was responsible for Rodger's rampage—and that is always a dangerous thing to do, since it lessens Rodger's own moral responsibility for what he did—then we might want to examine the impact of mainstream therapy culture rather than obsessing over the fringe misogyny culture he might have dabbled with.
Read the rest. Pass it on.
I've distrusted the therapy industry for a very long time. This feeds that distrust. Big-time.