Paying For Services By the Hour

When we go to a doctor he or she assesses our condition.   If and only if the doctor gathers enough evidence to substantiate a diagnosis will one be made.   Doctors tell us what they think the problem is and why.   They also consider the best route of treatment to eliminate the problem.   We pay for the examination, diagnosis and treatment plan.   I think that is fair, we are paying for the service.   The majority of doctors will tell us to come back if the problem is not gone in 10-14 days and it is amazing the number of doctors who will follow up to check on our progress.   This is because medical doctors are committed to helping us reach the goal of getting better.  They make careful, thoughtful decisions and stand accountable for their judgments and actions.   I call these health providers "professionals". 

Unfortunately, there are other vocations that also call themselves professionals but do not make the mark, in my opinion.    Based on the collective experience of targeted parents; lawyers, judges, therapists and social workers treat us  the opposite way that we expect to be treated by "professionals".  

Targeted parents regularly seek lawyers and mental health providers to help us resolve the greatest tragedy of our lives and the lives of our children.   However, practitioners in both of these domains seem to have a lot of baggage in the way of being a true professional.  Unlike professionals who provide a helping service, legal and mental health providers do not practice in such a way that they appear interested in the quality of the services they provide or whether or not they resolve our problem.  

When working with either of these groups, targeted parents report that they don't appear to know what they are doing.    This would account for their unusual payment structure.  Rather than rely on their knowledge and skills to provide a valuable service for which we gladly pay,  they require us to pay them for their presence.  That is to say, lawyers and therapists are paid on an hourly rate regardless of what they do or don't do, independent of whether they help us or hurt us.  What seems to be missing in both situations is that people in these domains don't understand the problem or know what to do about it.    And most targeted parents don't ask.   

People who hide the fact that they don't know what they are doing are not professionals.  Not that all professionals know everything, quite the contrary, but true professionals will tell us the limits of their competence and offer to learn, collaborate with others, listen to what we say and take official documents seriously.  True professionals will tell us if they disagree with us and recuse themselves it they think that they can not be of service.   True professionals invest in a positive outcome and feel some responsibility to actually help us once they enter into a contract for service.  On the other hand, lawyers and mental health providers don't contract for service, after all, they don't know what to do or how long it will take them or what the outcome will be.  There isn't any way that they want to be beheld accountable for anything.    So what are we paying for? 

Well let's look at what we get for our out of pocket expenses.   We get misdiagnosed, misunderstood and minimized .    We get delays, discrimination and distress.  We get blamed, bullied and bankruptcy. 

We really need to have higher expectations

of those who we hire to help us save our children. 

We must have professionals who are trauma informed.  

Question to lawyer or mental health provider: Are you trauma informed?


Answer. I don't think I understand what you mean.

Response.  Wow, you would if you were worth the powder to blow you up (my mother's saying).  Isn't your profession part of the solution to the single greatest public health threat in this country?   My child has an ACE score of 6-8+.   The other mental ill parent is controlling the family, psychologically abusing us,  emotionally neglecting us, he or she is responsible for my child's loss of a parent (ME) and I am the only resiliency factor he or she has.  The mentally ill parent is lawless and teaching the same to my child by not following court orders, lying to authorities, etc.

How is it possible for you to help my family if you can't recognize complex interpersonal trauma from a narcissistic/borderline partner?  

If I hire you and you don't have and knowledge or experience with ACEs and you're not trauma informed, you will hurt us even worse!  In fact, you will become part of the problem that perpetuates the most severe and damaging type of abuse - psychological abuse!

Ok,  you get the point.  Regardless of their credentials, every mental health provider MUST assess, diagnose and design and plan for appropriate treatment to resolve the diagnosed problem.   A treatment plan MUST assess the impact of trauma and where it is coming from or the problem will never be solved.  

Demand that your therapist and your court is trauma informed!