Information for Members of the Media
If you are a member of the media who is doing a story on bad therapy, the myth of repressed memories, so-called memory recovery therapy, false memory syndrome, or the Truth and Responsibility in Mental Health Practices Act, this page will help save you time and money when doing your research and finding authorities willing to provide quotes. Except where otherwise indicated, all resources are available for free upon request to the information provider.
For a general overview of these interrelated problems:
Memory Repression: Is There Evidence?
Believers in massive involuntary repression of memories will often claim that scientific studies have provided evidence for its existence. This is not true. There is no methodologically sound study which has found evidence to substantiate this 'theory.' (And if you'll permit me to do a methodologically unsound study, I'll be happy to prove that the Earth is flat!) To see the three most commonly-cited studies debunked, read this book chapter (not available online):
To protect against being misled by incompetent researchers who used flawed methodologies in designing and conducting studies or so-called 'experts' who misuse statistics, I recommend that everyone read The Demon-Haunted World: Science As a Candle in the Dark by Carl Sagan and How to Lie with Statistics.
Wenatchee: A Case Study in Government Gone Mad
One of the most extreme examples of what can happen when child protection officers, police, prosecutors, and mental health providers are gripped by mass hysteria, gross ignorance, and total professional incompetence is the case of Wenatchee, Washington, which was gripped by a witch hunt rivaling Salem as authorities hunted for sex rings and satanic cults. (They never found any evidence to substantiate these wild stories, but that didn't stop them from charging 43 people with 27,726 counts of child sex abuse and convicting seventeen who are still in prison!) The authorities in this city managed in a single investigation to commit every abuse of power, procedural error, civil rights violation, and conflict of interest known to man. (Oh, we shouldn't forget about selective use of evidence, destruction of evidence, and selective targeting for prosecution of the poor and disabled.) As a result, you can learn a lot by studying this single case. These errors are common. It's just uncommon for a single investigation to commit all of them simultaneously and falsely convict a dozen or more people! Fortunately, where the judicial system has failed, journalists are beginning to take action. To learn more:
Debunking the Myth of Satanic Ritual Abuse
Accusations of satanic ritual abuse are the Achilles's Heel of the Memory Recovery Movement because claims of ritual abuse by large, organized, interstate, transgenerational satanic cults are common among people who have gone through so-called memory recovery therapy (involved in 18% of the cases reported to the False Memory Syndrome Foundation), yet despite thousands of cases in which such allegations were made, there is no evidence that such cults exist anywhere. Obviously, the fact that memory recovery therapy so frequently leads to such bizarre, unlikely, and unsubstantiated allegations creates a serious credibility problem for accusers, their therapists, and the 'authorities' who still promote, use, or defend so-called memory recovery therapy. Since the techniques lead to strong belief in and accusations of events which never took place (satanic ritual abuse), the techniques themselves (check-list diagnosis, suggestive questioning, repeated drug-mediated interviews, hypnosis for 'recovering' memories, 'age regression,' dream interpretation, etc.) are clearly unreliable and downright dangerous, and the therapists who use these techniques are themselves the perpetrators of a horrible crime: the shattering of innocent families, and the misleading and exploitation of the mentally ill who are taught to blame their very real problems (depression, anxiety, borderline personality disorder, etc.) on the wrong cause (satanic ritual abuse which never occurred) and therefore led astray for years or forever from the path to actual recovery and taught to cut off and hate the families and friends who would otherwise be their greatest asset in their fight with disease. To learn more:
Getting Quotes from Authorities
The following experts are sometimes willing to provide quotes to the media about these issues. Here we provide links to their web sites which contain email addresses and/or other contact information. In seeking a quote, be sure to provide your name, organization, and contact information.
Doing a Story about this Site?
If a tree falls in a forest, and no one is there to hear it, does it make a sound? If you publish a web site and no one knows about it, does it make a difference? www.StopBadTherapy.com does welcome media stories about this site in the interest of raising awareness of the site and thereby educating the public about the dangers of bad therapy and preventing future tragedies.
If you are a member of the media who is writing a story about False Memory Syndrome or this web site, click here to email us. Please include your name, title, company name, the phone number of your employer's front office, the direct dial phone number of your own extension, email address if available, and your employer's address. Also, please describe the article you are writing.
If we are not familiar with the publication you are writing for, or if you are a freelance writer, we will ask that you send one copy of a recent issue of your publication or an article you have written to this site's mailing address and send or fax a copy of your own writing as well; sending this in advance will allow us to respond to you more quickly.
Key Points You Should Consider in Writing About This Site
Innovative use of web technology:
Guerilla marketing campaign:
Deeper Background Research