The world is full of of embarrassing conditions you wouldn’t wish on your worst enemy. Every week, Carian discusses one. This week: Paris Syndrome.
For most people, visiting foreign capitals is exciting or even a bit stressful. But when it comes to more severe mental break downs related to traveling, the Japanese and Paris appear to be the worst combination.
Of the millions of Japanese tourists visiting Paris every year, a dozen have to be returned to their home country due to the Paris syndrome. Simply put, it’s a collection of physical and psychological symptoms experienced by first-time visitors realizing that Paris isn’t, in fact, what they thought it would be.
But why the Japanese? The phenomenon is thought to affect Japanese more than others, because of the great cultural differences, the fact that many Japanese do not speak French (and vice versa) and have been bombarded with film and advertising images of an idealized Paris.
According to wikipedia, this trancient psychological disorder is characterized by a number of symptoms, such as acute delusional states, hallucinations, feelings of persecution, anxiety, and also psychosomatic manifestations such as dizziness, tachycardia, and sweating.
The Japanese embassy in Paris has a 24-hour hotline to help citizens suffering from culture shock and when needed, they send people home with a doctor on board of the plane to watch over them.
Photo via cogitz