As someone who is a fan of reality TV of all kinds and has had multiple therapists over several years, in settings ranging from a home office to a more clinical space, I felt like this scene in Family Karma
was different, in part, because we weren’t right up in Parvani and Sadana’s faces. The way the session was shot communicated a level of privacy, while still bringing audiences into the room with the stars, toeing the line between therapy for reality TV and therapy for real. Considering this was her first ever therapy session (she tells Refinery29 she was nervous and aware they were being filmed), “I wasn’t going to do a therapy session that was just for the show,” Sadana says.
Since their therapy episode first aired, Sadana and Parvani have heard from fans who said their scene helped break the stigma and normalize therapy, particularly among South Asians. And despite some initial trepidations, the Family Karma couple both say they wouldn’t be opposed to follow-up sessions. “I know there’s always risks involved,” Parvani says, but luckily, he says, “it’s only been beneficial for us” — and in many ways, their viewers.