Growth House Suggestions

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Joel Crohn

As a psychologist who works in the field of medical education,
I am deeply disturbed by Bonanno’s attempt to discredit and stigmatize individuals and
organizations dedicated to providing support for bereaved persons. Bonanno is correct in his
observation that any counseling that is rigid, doctrinaire, or that prescribes a one-size-fits-all approach to dealing with grief can be problematic. But to attack the entire field of grief counseling using anecdotes and bad science is dangerous and destructive to those in need of help.
What he’s doing is analogous to focusing on the natural resilience of the human body and the poor practices of some physicians to argue that we could get rid of most doctors and much of modern medicine.
The successful development of modern psychology and medicine rely on continually challenging conventional wisdom and seeking improved treatments. But in order for us to move forward, these challenges must be based on solid research. If Bananno is concerned about the misuse of anecdotes, inspirational stories, and fuzzy research to support poor practices, he should revisit his own work first.

Joel Crohn, Ph.D.

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