This kind of ‘treatment’ should be illegal. I created this movie after a couple of months of wondering what to do if Samaritan Counseling Center of the Capital Region was not willing to acknowledge the content of my complaint about AA coercion. (They acknowledged the letter and said nothing about its content, only that I had sent one copy without a stamp and therefore ‘under no circumstances’ was I to have any further personal contact with anyone at Samaritan Counseling, as if delivering a complaint incorrectly was breaking some kind of boundary I was unaware of.)
I spent $300 to subscribe to this cartoon making service, and sat down with my records, writing down a transcript of critical experiences in therapy (much of it is verbatim from records or memory). It was somewhat cathartic, because I didn’t know how to explain my experience to other people. Then I was afraid to show it to people; but when I did finally start sharing it, I was happy to see comments from many people who related to what I was trying to express. My view of the situation hasn’t changed much since then, but I have seen that this is not an isolated incident; it’s a pattern of mistreatment by addiction professionals and other professionals who feel afraid or incompetent to question them.
I originally intended this to be an abstract expression of the experience of AA coercion. But after having multiple Yelp reviews removed and Yelp accounts deleted, I decided to put their name on it, so that it shows up in search results for Samaritan Counseling in general. It’s one thing to have gone through something like this; it’s another thing to not get a reasonable response; it’s yet another thing to not have any way to tell other consumers about it because you are being censored by people who feel they need to hide the truth. That’s what’s great about the internet!