Monday, July 14, 2014

This is a first.

I've been a little pre-occupied the last several days. It started with a patient I'd been working with about managing his aggressive, impulsive behavior. Charged with stalking, he painted himself as a misunderstood victim. But he continued to act out and make threats to sue various people. At the beginning of last week, after our session, I got a voicemail saying he was canceling all future appointments with me because, he said, I was working against him with his physician and the woman he'd been stalking. The message continued: "I’m going to find me a lawyer and I’m going to put you and Dr. X in prison. If I don’t put you out of business, I’m going to put you in prison because y’all have teamed up against me. Don’t never call me again. Bye.”

Well. In my business, the therapeutic relationship essentially ends with a move like that. I called for a legal consult with my liability insurance and then sent a termination letter explaining that.

Another angry voicemail followed, accusing me of abandoning him and saying he'd never come to my office again. But I knew I hadn't heard the end of it. Cut to Thursday when a police officer knocked on my door and asked me to step outside. She wanted to warn me that the patient had gone to the physician's office and said he'd never killed a doctor but was going to. And that he knew that doctor and I were conspiring against him. She said it was clear that he was threatening both of us and when they arrested him, they found he'd gone out and bought a bunch of ammo for a .45. Since he's already been charged and is awaiting trial for the stalking charges, he's not allowed to have guns. But he's made it clear to me he has access to them even though he doesn't have them at his house.

This morning, another voicemail saying he needed a psychological evaluation to help his case: "I need a written permit from you, telling me about my psychology service and and whether I'm crazy or not. I need that. To take to the court. Now, if you don't give it to me or send it to me or let me come over there and get it, I'm going deny these Medicare claims and file a fraud report. All you got to do is let me come over there and you write it out and give it to me. Now you call me or do something or I'm going to fill out this Medicare... deny all these claims that you got on me. Bye." As if you can retroactively cancel services already provided and then claim fraud.

I drove to the courthouse to see about getting an order of protection and was given a multi-page form to complete with all kinds of information I didn't have on me and told I'd have to get a judge to sign it. Why would they make that so difficult? And if it was difficult for me, imagine what it would be like for some poor, uneducated woman in an abusive relationship. Next I drove to the police station and as soon as they heard who I was talking about, I was taken back to an office. The chief of police and another officer sat down with me to take my statement and listen to the recorded messages. The police chief was angry - they've been dealing with this guy for a while now and want him taken care of. The upshot of all this is that until his court date, he can bond out each time he's arrested. They've requested that his bond be revoked when he does go to court. And they are also requesting a psych eval for commitment. I was told by both of them to call if he came by again, made any more phone calls or even if I just had the suspicion that he was around.

When I got back to the office, there was yet another voicemail reiterating his wish for me to get an evaluation to him, ending with: "Now Medicare.. I know I didn't have to pay nothing for all those visits but Medicare did and if I don't get it I WILL call Medicare. Bye." And a couple of hours later, another: "If you don't call me back within the hour on my cell phone and tell me that you are going to send me an evaluation report or you're going to give it to Dr. X, you've got ONE hour, or I'm going to call Medicare. Bye." Like he's a kidnapper setting terms for the ransom drop-off.

The officer called this afternoon to let me know that a warrant had been issued and that he'd gone to the guy's house to arrest him only to find the guy had been transported to the VA hospital. I found myself fervently wishing he'd had a CVA or a massive MI or something else that would put him out of commission. And I don't like wishing harm on someone.  It feels karmically wrong. The officer said that as soon as the guy is released from the hospital he'll be arrested. But has already told me not to have a false sense of  security because he'll be released again quickly, to stay aware and call them if I need anything. What I need is for this guy to go far, far away.

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