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Press Release for the Launch of


NEW WEB SITE EMPOWERS THERAPY CLIENTS, HOLDS THERAPISTS RESPONSIBLE FOR DANGEROUS "MEMORY RECOVERY" TECHNIQUES provides information to prevent psychotherapy malpractice and to help its victims and their families.

SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. (December 2, 1998) - An Internet web site can make you rich, but can it reform the mental health industry?, a new Internet web site launched today, seeks to reform the mental health industry by requiring informed consent for mental therapy and warning consumers about the risks of therapies which haven't been tested for safety and effectiveness.

        "Too many lives and innocent families are being shattered by so-called memory recovery therapy and other forms of mental health

malpractice," says Eric Krock, the web site's creator. " provides:

  • educational information to empower mental health consumers and prevent tragedies
  • legal referrals and state licensing board contacts to help those already victimized
  • legislation to reform the mental health industry, and
  • point-and-click templates which make it easy to email your elected officials and demand change.

Memory recovery therapy is the toxic waste of the mental health industry, and this site will shut the polluters down."

The new Internet web site,, takes direct aim at the controversial use of techniques such as hypnosis and "guided imagery" in attempts to "recover memories" which a therapist believes the client has "repressed." Last year in the U.K., the Royal College of Psychiatrists advised psychiatrists to avoid using such techniques. In the U.S., recent multimillion dollar damage awards and settlements in lawsuits against psychiatrists have highlighted claims by former clients that the techniques produce "false memories" of abuse which never happened. To address these problems, provides:

  • an online 40 question checklist for evaluating your therapy reprinted from Beware the Talking Cure by Terence Campbell, Ph.D.
  • contact information for professional licensing boards in all 50 states to enable former clients and their families to file complaints of unethical or incompetent practice
  • contact information for attorneys willing to represent victims of psychotherapy malpractice
  • legislation to reform the mental health industry by requiring informed consent for mental health practices, and point-and-click form letters to email elected officials asking for passage of this legislation
  • true stories of bad therapy and false memories told by clients and their families
  • excerpts from the books Victims of Memory by Mark Pendergrast, Suggestions of Abuse by Michael Yapko, Ph.D, and Second Thoughts by Paul Simpson, Ph.D.

Deborah David, who developed false memories of sexual and satanic ritual abuse while in therapy, says "I and my family were the victims of a therapist who used untested, unsafe, and unscientific techniques called 'repressed memory therapy.' California's Board of Behavioral Sciences, the people who are paid by tax dollars to monitor therapists and protect consumers, dismissed my complaint by claiming 'there was no enforceable standard of practice' for repressed memory therapy and did nothing to protect the public. It is time psychotherapists are held to the same accountability as other industries are when selling goods and treatments to the consumers of this state.  Licensing boards must also be accountable to the consumers instead of protecting therapists who practice therapies that have never been shown to be safe and effective. is a wakeup call to the boards that consumers will no longer allow their tax dollars to be spent on protecting irresponsible psychotherapists while they harm more innocent people."

Carol Marks, MFCC, who practices in California, says "I've been startled and ashamed at so many of my colleagues' misuse of therapeutic practice. Whatever happened to 'First do no harm' as a guiding principle of treatment? Psychotherapists who practice recovered memory therapy have created mental illness in the very patients they purported to help."

Experts and psychotherapy malpractice victims nationwide are hailing today's public launch of as a milestone in the movement to reform the nation's mental health industry. Noted memory researcher Elizabeth Loftus, Ph.D., Professor of Psychology at the University of Washington at Seattle, says that "Research shows that under the right circumstances, false memories can be planted in some people, even for events that would have been upsetting had they actually happened. is a unique effort to bring to public attention the risks of some therapy techniques, and to hopefully minimize faulty diagnoses and false accusations.   We all have an interest in preventing future tragedies."

Michael Yapko, Ph.D., author of Suggestions of Abuse, adds that "My work highlights the disturbingly large number of mental health professionals who treat their patients on the basis of often idiosyncratic personal beliefs and misinformation.  Specifically, those therapists who hold basic misconceptions about human memory,  hypnosis, and the power of suggestion are potentially harmful to their patients through their ability to influence them to adopt similarly erroneous and even dangerous ideas about the origin and meaning of their symptoms. will help to educate both therapists and the public and thereby help prevent future tragedies of therapeutic malpractice."

R. Chris Barden, an attorney and licensed psychologist who is President of the National Association for Consumer Protection in Mental Health Practices, says that "Although our ongoing litigation and education efforts continue to be powerfully successful, legislation requiring informed consent and safe and effective treatments is also needed to protect mental health consumers from the dangers posed by incompetent therapists. will assist the mental health reform movement by educating the public and helping concerned citizens contact state and federal legislators."

Pamela Freyd, Ph.D., Executive Director of the False Memory Syndrome Foundation, says that "This site provides a wealth of information for people interested in the topic of false memories and the therapeutic techniques that carry a heavy risk of causing them. It provides a central location for the public to obtain information about the licensing and monitoring of professionals by state regulatory boards."

Mark Pendergrast, author of Victims of Memory, says that " provides a comprehensive, valuable one-stop web site for information on the recovered memory phenomenon.  Countless psychotherapy clients have been led into false memories of sexual abuse that harm their mental health and destroy their families.  When people enter therapy, they are, by definition, in a vulnerable state.  It is reprehensible to encourage the search for mythical 'memories' with pseudoscientific methods. is a vital resource for all who seek to understand this phenomenon."

Beth Rutherford, who developed false memories of incest and abortions during therapy but has since reconciled with her family, says that "Those of us who are victims of False Memory Syndrome initially go to a therapist for different reasons.  For me, it was job stress. For others it may be a painful divorce, a death in the family,  marital problems,  problems with a child, a tragic pregnancy, etc.  But one thing is certain, we never walked into the therapist's office with the idea that we had been sexually abused.  Unfortunately however, we all left with that idea." Her sister Lynette adds that "This can happen to anybody. We had the perfect family ... I wouldn't have believed it myself, if I wasn't in it."  Despite the "memories" of incest and abortions which Beth Rutherford reported while in therapy, a medical examination after she returned to her family showed her to be a virgin, and her father had had a vasectomy when she was four years old.

Author Charlotte Vale Allen emphasizes the harm which psychotherapy malpractice and the false memories it creates are doing to actual victims of incest. "I spent almost fifteen years getting Daddy's Girl published and traveling internationally to bring public awareness to an issue of signal importance, primarily to children.  Then, to my horror, I learned that my 'outing' of incest had become the basis for a multi-million dollar industry of generating memories of abuse that never happened. Now I'm working again to make people aware that in all the debate about whether or not 'recovered memories' could be real--and I firmly believe they are not, as none of the incest victims I've encountered in more than 30 years have forgotten anything--the children who actually are being abused have been all but forgotten."

Krock says he was motivated to create the site after his sister developed false memories while in therapy that their grandparents headed satanic cults and that both he and she were the victims of violent abuse as children. Krock says that his sister sent accusing letters to him and other family members two and a half years ago and has refused contact with the family ever since. "It's too late to save my family from the agony of False Memory Syndrome, " he says, "but it's not too late to save yours. Write your elected officials today and demand that mental health consumers be guaranteed the right to informed consent. Remember, your family may be next."

Tana Dineen, Ph.D., author of Manufacturing Victims: What the Psychology Industry is Doing to People, notes that memory recovery therapy is only a specific example of the general problem of mental health malpractice and therapy performed without informed consent. "Recovered Memory Therapy is undeniably under attack as serious damages to individuals, families and the court system are being recognized. However, what the public needs to recognize that what has been exposed is `just the tip of the iceberg.'"

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