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There are certain trappings to the ideal vision of high school in Japan. A schoolhouse with surprisingly lenient rooftop access policies is one. A bevy of beautiful, earnest coed equipment managers cheering you on in the big game is another. And no set of rose-colored school days is complete without a kind, patient, nurturing school nurse.

If you’re past your teens, most of these are now out of reach. Contrary to what anime and TV dramas have shown us, Japanese educational institutes don’t even let their own students eat lunch on the roof, much less some random guy trying to turn back the clock. Putting your grown-man strength to use in youth athletics is similarly out of the question.

Thanks to a new website that launched this month, though, it’s not too late to have another chat with that school nurse.

The website, called School Nurse’s Office for Adults, started service on July 7. Created by NR Productions, a producer of racy computer software, the website allows users to send emails about anything that’s troubling them or making them feel down. A certified school nurse will then respond, usually within 48 hours.

“When you become an adult, the stress and tiredness caused by work, raising children, and interpersonal relationships in general tends to pile up,” explains an NR Productions spokesperson. “Even if you want to talk to your friends or family members about the things that are bothering you, your schedules might now allow you to sped that much time together, or you may hold back because you don’t want to burden them with your problems. On the other hand, comprehensive psychosomatic treatment can be expensive and time-consuming, so it’s not a practical option for everyone, either.” The appeal of the website, NR Productions says, is how it allows for simple, inexpensive consultation.

Obviously the service isn’t meant to take the place of full-fledged psychological counseling. Instead, the website is billed as a place where users can get things of their chest to alleviate some of the pressure of daily life.

Registration is free and requires no information other than an email address (to which the link back to the website confirming and finalizing registration is sent) and the user’s gender. Ordinarily the service costs 5,000 yen (US$50) for five consultations, or 10,000 yen for 11. However, thanks to the site’s grand opening promotion, currently all new members receive a ticket for one question free of charge, with no obligation to purchase more.

▼ We’re not sure if the bear is our nurse’s boss or her assistant, but we do know that he wants us to notice her legs. Duly noted, Mr. Bear. Now put your pants back on.

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Unable to resist the siren song of nurse chat, we filled out the registration form and fired off a fabricated yet feasible question right away.

“I met a girl at a party last winter. Since then we’ve been going out to eat together about once a month, and I really like her. I want to take our relationship to the next level, but I can’t seem to work up the nerve to tell her how I feel. What should I do?”

The next night, we already had our response.

So you’re falling in love? That’s wonderful! Have you been the one inviting her out?

You can’t always tell what people are feeling just by looking at them, which can make relationships pretty scary. I know it’s tricky finding the right time to tell someone how you feel about them. There are lots of fun things going on in the summer, like fireworks shows and festivals, that you can use as an excuse to casually ask her out and increase the amount of time you spend together. Watch how she acts when she’s around you, and it’ll help you get a clearer picture of how she feels about you. And if you’re honest and sincere with how you treat her, she should start to get an idea of what your feeling are too.

Give it your best shot! I’m cheering for you!

Hmm… pretty solid advice, and a lot more chaste than what we’d initially expected, given NR Productions’ usual product line-up.

Curious as to what kind of answer we’d get with a less romantic question, we sent one more.

“I moved to a new prefecture to start my job in April. I like my work, but I’m not close to any of my coworkers, and I don’t know anyone else in this city. I don’t want to quit my job and move back home, but spending my days off alone feels empty. How do working people make friends?”

Again, our nurse replied to us the next day.

An environment you’re not used to can be extremely tiring. Lifestyle changes, even positive ones like getting married, tend to be great sources of stress, even if the individual himself doesn’t realize it.

It’s good that you’re enjoying work. For now you might want to focus on adjusting to your new job, and leave worrying about making friends until after you’ve settled in a little more. Some people make friends very quickly, and for others it takes time. Neither one is necessarily better than the other.

When you’re ready, take another look at the people around you, and think again if any of them seem like someone you might be able to get along with. Your initial conversations might seem trivial, but they may lead you to discover interests you have in common. Even if they don’t, talking to people is a great chance to broaden your perspective, and you might even find your way of thinking changing as you spend more time communicating with them.

I’m sorry I can’t give you a more concrete answer, but I’m always here if you need someone to talk to.

Wow, we’d call that two for two.

The website doesn’t say how long the opening promotion will run for, so there’s no telling when the first-time freebies will dry up. If you want in on the deal, act fast. You don’t even need to ask for a hall pass first.

Sources: Otona no Hokenshitsu, Akiba Keizai Shimbun
Top image: Otona no Hokenshitsu Insert image: Akiba Keizai Shimbun