Guangzhou, 27 Oct (Xinhua) — In recent years, emotional counseling that claims to “repair emotions” and “save predecessors” has become popular. Some people in emotional crisis, buying emotional consulting services such as “lovelorn counseling” and “marriage recovery” that cost thousands or tens of thousands of yuan, not only failed to save their feelings, but were also induced to constantly add money to upgrade packages, falling into both emotional and economic anxiety. The reporter’s investigation found that the service quality of relevant institutions is uneven, and some institutions promise to “save the package” and set up layers of sets, when consumers find “into the pit”, but it is often difficult to protect their own rights and interests.
Spending tens of thousands of yuan to save marriage, but finding that “step by step is a pit”
Last year, 30-year-old Fuzhou female employee Lan Xin (pseudonym) fell into a marriage crisis. Helpless, she searched for “emotional counseling” questions and answers on a Q&A platform, and contacted one of the respondents who called herself an “emotional doctor” with the mentality of trying.
“Your problem is very serious, you can’t solve it on your own, we will help you.” “Marriage is a lifetime thing, and it is worth it to save it with money.” The other party’s words were said everywhere in Lan Xin’s heart. Moved, Lan Xin signed a service contract with an emotional consulting company in Guangzhou, where the respondent worked.
I thought I had grasped the life-saving straw to save my feelings, but I didn’t expect to enter the trap everywhere. According to the agreement, the consultation service fee for marriage repair and recovery is 8,000 yuan, including 2 months of unlimited phone calls, unlimited WeChat guidance and accompanying consultation, and the subsequent 2 months of WeChat companionship tracking feedback.
However, after paying the money, Lan Xin found that she promised “unlimited phone calls”, in fact, she often did not make an appointment with a “mentor”, and only called three or four times a month. And the “whole process of online guidance” is also “dropped” from time to time. Sometimes a message is sent to the “mentor” and a response is received every other day.
Orchid believes that this is not in line with the original propaganda. When she questioned the effectiveness of the service, the “mentor” pointed out that her problem was too serious, and suggested paying another 5,000 yuan to upgrade the package and accept the accompaniment consultation of an external senior supervisor. Lan Xin, who was eager to repair her marriage, upgraded the package, but then found that the so-called senior supervisor was to let students read best-selling books such as “Nonviolent Communication” and “Men from Mars and Women from Venus”, and then read them in the circle of friends according to the template. What’s more infuriating is that some “mentors” also induce students to send sexy photos, which is called “let the other party see their own changes”.
When Lan Xin realized that this was a “bottomless pit” consumption routine and wanted to refund, she found that there was a lot of resistance. Although the service contract stipulates that “if the consultation is invalid, the visitor has the right to stop the consultation at any time and negotiate to apply for a refund”, because the service effect is difficult to determine, the two parties have not been able to reach a consensus on the refund.
The “krypton gold” routine under the “gimmick”
In recent years, the demand for emotional marriage counseling has increased, and the industry has developed rapidly. In the mobile app store, there are a number of emotional counseling apps for download. On the e-commerce platform, there are teams that specialize in providing services such as “lovelorn counseling”, “love counseling” and “marriage recovery”. There are also video courses such as “Understanding Love Emotions” and “Love Business Course” on the short video platform. The quality of these products and services is uneven, with prices ranging from tens of dollars for experience classes to tens of thousands of yuan for private lessons. The reporter found that in order to make the consultant pay quickly and pay more, some institutions did not hesitate to set up layers of traps.
– Exaggerate the problem and make a high commitment to attract customers. Chen Jing (pseudonym), who had purchased the “Love Recovery” service, said that when I first started my diagnosis, the counselor said that my problem was very serious and it was not suitable to delay it any longer. If she buys services, her feelings can be at least six or seven percent sure of redemption.
Zhang Wen, head of a marriage consulting company, told reporters that it is not ruled out that some customers do have serious emotional problems, but some institutions exaggerate in order to attract customers, and use the “fear method” to let consultants seek help from institutions.
——Consultation becomes “speech”, and “customized recovery plan” is a unified template. The reporter learned that in addition to the difference in personal information, the strategy given by the consulting agency is “nothing more than taking photos and hair circles to show high value, effective communication, and building trust”. Chen Jing said that the so-called customized recovery plan, the “strategy” between mentors has “fights”. Once it was about to reach her ex-boyfriend’s birthday, on the topic of whether to give gifts, a mentor gave her a trick: “You can send it or not.” WeChat send a blessing, no need to talk about anything else”; Another tutor gave the opposite advice: “It’s okay to chat. “And the agency promised the chat service at the beginning, but in fact it did not do it once.
——Induce markups, upgrade packages layer by layer. A number of counselors reported that when they questioned the effectiveness of the institution’s services, the tutor said, “You have serious psychological problems, and you need to extend the consultation time or change the advanced package to be useful.” Lan Xin said that in the process of consultation, the other party often sells other courses such as “Goddess Project” and “The Art of Chat”.
“Reading books and making friends, changing hairstyles, buying clothes, this kind of course content is free everywhere. If it’s just such advice, do you need to spend thousands of dollars for a special consultation? Lan Xin said angrily.
Industry insiders also introduced that some emotional consulting agencies do not pay attention to improving service quality, but through online Q&A platforms, web advertising keyword implantation, recruiting writers to collage emotional articles, etc., hunting emotionally frustrated online consultants, and then through customer service drainage, let consumers pay for it.
New standards are urgently needed to regulate the industry
The reporter learned that large market demand, low industry threshold, mixed practitioners, and lack of standardized behavior standards are important reasons for the frequent chaos in the current emotional counseling industry.
Zhong Huilan, secretary-general of Guangzhou Psychological Counselors Association, said that since the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security cancelled the professional qualification certification of psychological counselors in 2017, the industry has not established new evaluation standards and thresholds. At present, there are a variety of marriage and emotional counseling related certificates on the market, and some training can be obtained in a few months, and the “gold content” and recognition of these certificates cannot be recognized, and it is difficult to ensure the professionalism of relevant counseling.
Zhong Huilan said that at present, the association is also promoting the establishment of new evaluation standards, from professional training hours, self-experience hours, social practice hours, business supervision and other dimensions to establish a practitioner evaluation system, so that consumers have standards to refer to. She suggested that when choosing an institution, consumers can use channels such as the enterprise credit information publicity website to find out whether the consulting institution has been included in the directory of abnormal operations and the list of seriously illegal and untrustworthy enterprises. At the same time, carefully understand the reputation evaluation, actual service level, after-sales service and customer privacy protection of the institution.
Many experts have suggested that intimate relationships in love take time to operate. The real repair effect does not lie in redemption, but in the improvement of the relationship between the two parties and the improvement of self-psychological quality. We cannot believe the claim that using “words” and “plans” can package tickets to “save emotions”. (Contributor: Zhong Peilin)