Fay Canyon, Sedona Arizona. Photo by Doug Bergé.
Counseling In Tokyo

Counseling In Tokyo: English counseling and therapy service in Tokyo Japan


English speaking therapist, counselor, and psychologist in the Shibuya-Ebisu area of Tokyo providing psychological support, individual therapy, life coaching, marriage and divorce counseling, and group psychotherapy for the international community.

The counseling psychotherapists at the Counseling in Tokyo Group (CIT) work with the International Community the Meguro Ward of central Tokyo through the medium of individual or group psychotherapy with particular emphasis on interpersonal factors. Counseling in Tokyo is a 12-minute walk from Nakameguro Station on the Toyoko, Hibiya, and Fukutoshin lines (Shibuya-Ebisu Area of Tokyo), and a 25-minute direct ride from Yokohama Station. Corporate training and conflict resolution is also available, please inquire for details. In addition, phone or Skype counseling is often provided for persons living in the Kansai area (Kobe, Osaka, and Kyoto). See what we write about on Twitter:Dr. Bergé's Twitter PageMeguro Counseling Center Twitter PageAnxiety & Depression Twitter Page.

Individual Counseling

Individual therapy often focuses on the Core Issue-Defense Paradigm in psychotherapy. The central theme here is that everyone has certain core issues like feeling inadequate or unloved, that one sometimes makes maladaptive defenses against (ie. trying too hard to get noticed by others or getting into unhealthy romantic relations) that can then lead to trouble for the individual. Understanding and re-working these defenses and how they lead to trouble, as well as minimizing the effects of one's core issues is a very useful tool in therapy. Defenses can also sabotage the therapy if they are not handled properly in the sessions. Please refer to these case examples based on these approaches.

Counseling-In-Tokyo often uses charts and graphs in order to conceptualize clinical issues in visual form. These are some examples of the many files used in counseling (the graphs require individual discussion in order to make sense in context of each unique situation):

  • Core Issues & Defenses; a flow chart of the core psychological issues people have and the adaptive and maladaptive defenses people use. This chart is used to help people understand the fundamental working of, and the weakness and strengths in their personality makeup.
  • Mood Effects on Psychology; a diagram of how abnormal mood can lead to negative self conclusions which then promote feelings and behaviors that are not optimal.
  • Self Esteem Needs in Relationships; an illustration of how the mechanics of intimate relationships can lead to crashes in self esteem. This graph is useful to help persons who are suffering a break-up in an important relationship.
  • Obedience & Defiance Cycle; how a cycle between obedience and defiance can lead to resentment, guilt and fear, secondary depression, anxiety, conflict, and decreased self-assertion. This graph is also used in this case illustration video.

Group Counseling

Group therapy focuses on interpersonal interactions where the members serve as a mirror for each other in a forum where discussion about feelings about the interaction are the purpose of the meeting. Although non-Japanese persons can feel far away from home in Japan, the Counseling in Tokyo Group realizes the support needs of the foreign community right here in the center of Tokyo. Individual, couples, and family therapy is also available in both English and Japanese.

In the usual social setting, it is inappropriate to discuss the process of the interaction itself. However, because the purpose of group counseling is to look deeply into the interactive process itself, this makes the group a powerful tool to help one re-work their relationship style. For example, some persons try to be the center of attention in groups, however they don't realize how this actually pushes others away. Others are quiet and withholding of their feelings and may set up a wall between themselves and real intimacy; or even aggravate others unknowingly. Other persons have a tendency to argue or be cynical. Each person is usually unaware of their specific personality style and uses these styles as a defense mechanism to help themselves maintain emotional stability.

The Counseling in Tokyo Group is run by Dr. Douglas Bergé, M.D., Ph.D., an American Board-Certified Psychiatrist who is the Director of the Meguro Counseling Center. All the therapists have professional qualifications both in Japan as well as from abroad, and all therapists are bilingual in English and Japanese. Inquiries and therapy are private and confidential.