Complaint Review: Amethyst Foundation
Amethyst Foundation Taking all of my money, doing nothing to help me. Epping New Hampshire
I was ordered by the court to complete one of the programs that they recomended in order to get my license back. Basically my only option was the Amethyst Foundation, lucky me. I only lost my license for 9 months but was given the opportunity to get it back in 90 days if I completed the program within a certian amount of days. I've done everything that I've been asked to do, shelled out hundreds of dollars, been called a drunk and a liar and am still more than 5 months away from being able to get my license back.
This place is rigged so that no matter what you do, or where you come from you can't get through the program without giving them all of your money and giving up your license for even longer than you were told by the court you'd be losing it for. The first part of the process is to go to an intake evaluation and answer a bunch of questions about how ofen you drink, how much you drink when you do, your tolerance levels. Every question is catered to someone that is an alcoholic. There are no answers that you can select to say that you don't think that you have a drinking problem, other than the 'I don't think that I need help' option, of course in parentheses it says (I'm not motivated.) So you're either a drunk that needs help, or a drunk that isn't motivated to get help.
The program could potentially be beneficial to someone that actually has an alcohol problem, but what about those of us that don't? I was charged with a first offense DUI, one regrettable evening gone awry and now my entire life is in shambles. I stand behind the arguments that DUI offenders need to be punished firmly, it is a serious offense, it's potentially incredibly dangerous. All of this makes sense to me. What doesn't make sense is punishing everyone that's convicted to the same extent. I made a poor decision, and I need to attone for that for sure, but that doesn't mean that I'm an alcoholic. Forcing me into self help programs and into counciling that isn't relevent to my life isn't going to stop me from doing this again, sure all of the trouble they've caused has made me all that much more determined to avoid having to deal with the legal system again, but it's also caused me to lose any of the faith that I had in the system. Why is the state standing behind an organization that is clearly a scam? An informative class or counseling program that's understanding of peoples personal situations would be far more appropriate. Again, I'm not saying that I think that people should be able to get away with DUI without any consequences, but not every person is the same. Not ever case is the same, not everyone that gets arrested for a DUI is an alcoholic, we shouldn't all be treated like we are. Nobody wants to be judged, or told that they're something that they aren't, this is a terrible way to try to get someone help. Also self help? Isn't that by it's very definition help that I'd be looking for myself? If I think that I don't need it, forcing me to go there isn't going to change my mind. It's a waste of someone elses time as well as mine, and it could potentially interfere with the progress of people in the program that actually want to be there and need the help. Amethyst Foundation doesn't agree, their way is the only way, and any concerns about the program you raise to them will quickly be met with uninformed replies about how it's a state program that they have no control over, and that fighting the system will result in further loss of license. If you're denying you have a problem, clearly you're just dealing with the first stages of admitting that you have one. Clearly.
After your intake evaluation they go through a checklist with you to tell you whether or not you need a second evaluation. If you have to go to this place at all be prepared to go to both meetings. It seems impossible to get out of it. I had prequalified for the second evaluation based on my BAC, and they knew this when I signed up for the first eval, it was part of the process. Instead of just having me come in and pay the 200 for the lengthy evaluation they told me that I needed to go to the intake, and pay the 140 regardless. Pay them 140 dollars just so they could 'officially' inform me that I needed to pay them 200 more dollars. I had a pretty long conversation with the woman in the office that day about the questions and the different ways that they end up getting you into the second evaluation. She didn't really know all that much, but she did tell me that basically everyone that comes to here ends up having to go through the whole process. She had no real answers about how I should answer the questions that really didn't apply to me, or about the obviously rigged questions. She did, however, let me know that even if I had somehow managed to get out of her office without being told I needed to go to the second half of the eval my file would be sent to the director of the program who would then make a decision about whether or not I'd have to do the program anyway. Even if you score high enough on all of the things to avoid it, if that guy feels like you're a drunk when he reads your file than you're a drunk. It's completely irrelevant that this man doesn't know you or anything about you, he has the final say!
The second evaluation is basically a more extensive version of the first one, except this time instead of being called a liar by a computer you get to be called a liar by a person that sees and hears nothing but dollar signs the entire time that you're in their office. Despite the fact that I told them the truth about everything, I still wasn't telling the truth. These people didn't care one bit about any of the actual issues I had in my life, they just picked apart everything that I said and twisted into admissions of substance abuse or denial. This isn't helping anyone, they're delusional if they think that anyone is benefiting from the crap they're putting them through. At the end of the meeting I was informed that not only do I have to attend AA meetings, I also have to see a LDAC for 5 months, and complete their incredibly expensive and most likely useless class.
So, 140 dollars just to hear what I already know.. So here's another 200. Please, I love being called a liar, here's another 100 just because.. OK that part is a joke. Then 450 for the class, looking forward to that. Icing on the cake here, not only do I have to go through all of this counseling for a problem that I do not have, I also need to make two monthly phone calls to the Amethyst Foundation updating them on my progress. Luckily for me the phone calls will be billed at 30 dollars apeice. Once I do all of that, I get to learn whether or not they feel it's safe for me to be on the road again or not. This means, I get to spend another 150 bucks to find out whether or not I need after care..
This place is a total scam. All they want is your money. If they cared at all about actually helping people they'd be running a program that accounted for the fact that not every case is the same. Are a lot of the people that go into that place alcoholics? Probably. Should those of us that aren't need to admit that we are just to get through the program? I don't think so.
Also, just because this is bothering me, how can it be legal for a program recomended by the state to require you to go to meetings at an institution that's been proved to be a religious one? Isn't this New Hampshire? I'm so confused. I thought we were progressive here, evidently I was wrong.
If you end up getting convicted, do all that you can to deal with any program other than these people. They exist only to take your money, to try to force you to admit that you're an alcoholic, and apparently to convert you to their religion. Tax dollars at work, thank you Jesus.
This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 10/29/2013 06:29 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/reports/amethyst-foundation/epping-new-hampshire/amethyst-foundation-taking-all-of-my-money-doing-nothing-to-help-me-epping-new-hampshir-1095551. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year. Ripoff Report has an exclusive license to this report. It may not be copied without the written permission of Ripoff Report. READ: Foreign websites steal our content
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