BetterHelp.combetterhelp.com tried to trick me!

I almost signed up for this. I started to. But then I read the fine print and I was horrified. This company to me is a sham. To me its nothing more than a silicon valley version of "therapy-twitter" not run by psychologists but run by tech entrepreneurs looking to make a buck. They market themselves as a place to obtain professional credentialed licensed counseling. They use the hippa logo. They declare therapist credentials. They want us to believe we are getting clinical counseling. And they want me to believe they are hippa complaint. They want me to believe your information is protected to the same degree it would be at a doctors office. But wait!

Did you read their fine print? They seem to contradict everything they market.

"the platform does not include the provision of medical care, mental health services, or other professional services by us."

"note that all communications transmitted through the platform, may be recorded or monitored for quality assurance and training purposes and become part of your file and records."

Can you imagine who might be "monitoring" your therapy sessions? Mental health professionals? Nope. Think again. Imagine you are talking about your deep personal life, your children's intimate life details, your relationships, confessing your hurts... And unbeknownst to you some silicon valley it dude who works behind servers and doesn't even have a degree in psychology is reading the whole thing because he is a 'monitor'. Its possible under this pathetic item in their privacy terms.

And in their terms of services for the therapists themselves:

As of jan 2017, the following quotations represent actual quotes from their terms of service, which they give themselves to freely change whenever they want. So if you see something different now, it means they have since changed it.

"the provider will not diagnose, treat, test, advise, counsel, recommend a course of treatment, or otherwise provide or perform any services that require an in-person meeting with a user or examination of a user.
The provider agrees that the provider services, advice and or information that he or she provides to a user, aren't in any way to be considered a substitute for a face-to-face interaction between the user and the provider (or any other professional).

Really? So basically, by using betterhelp, i'm not even getting clinical help! This isn't better.

But let's not stop there.:"all contact between the provider, users and any other users or consumers who are introduced through the platform must be conducted only through the platform."

This means that if you like your therapist, and want an actual clinical relationship with that person... Too bad. You are forced to stick with the"platform"so that the silicon valley tech entrepreneurs can make money. This is perhaps the worst part of the whole deal... These guys want total control over your therapist. It's simply wrong to me.

"we may sell or transfer some or all of our assets, including your personal information, in connection with a merger, acquisition, consolidation, joint venture, reorganization or sale of assets. Such transactions would be covered by a confidentiality agreement."

Yipee! All that private data you give to your therapist using the all-seeing"platform"looks like its not only being recorded and saved, but may be sold to the highest bidder!

But the scariest part I haven't even mentioned:
Regarding session data (i. E. Your private therapy sessions):

"note that all communications transmitted through the platform, may be recorded or monitored for quality assurance and training purposes and become part of your file and records."

Yikes! All session data will"become part of your file and records."

So yes folks, all of your therapy sessions are able to be stored and logged by it guys who are not mental health professionals. I find that unethical at best and something in me says perhaps its not even legal (though I am not a lawyer, but i'd be curious to know if what they are doing is even legal... I am not saying its illegal by any means, but i'd definitely be scared to death to use these guys for any type of real counseling given their horrific terms of service).

The for-profit company tells people like me I will get credentialed therapy online (this is how they market themselves), and then they control and regulate all forms of contact so that I am unable to contact my therapist outside their"platform"and then they force the"therapist"in their terms of service to not actually provide clinical counseling.

Betterhelp markets themselves as clinical counseling, they display therapist license #'s on profiles, but then in their fine print basically claim they are not even providing clinical counseling, as if all you are getting is some kind of talk-support, but they are nonetheless using licensure as a way to validate and make the entire scheme function. This is a disservice to psychological science and I believe for those who truly suffer from mental illness, they are being misled and fooled.

In my opinion, they market themselves as clinical counseling but in the fine print, they basically disavow the whole"clinical counseling"thing. How pathetic! I was almost fell for it when I signed up... Until I read their fine print and was taken aback.

To me companies like this take clinical counseling and reduce it to a telemarketing shop-now for-profit therapy version of"twitter" simply to put money in the pockets of high tech silicon valley entrepreneurs and is no longer about clinical science.

We should all think twice about using betterhelp, because nothing about it is better. To me, it is far worse.

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