This topic has come up repeatedly in a Facebook group I help run.
Why can’t someone just take my case for free?
The simple answer is that we have bills to pay. (Later I’ll talk about the real reason.)
Homeopathy is our job.
We have practice-related expenses, such as books, printer cartridges, pricey software, postage, professional-looking mailers and small amber dropper bottles.
Homeopathic remedies cost a fortune.
Especially when you buy hundreds of them in different potencies.
We also spend years studying homeopathy.
We’ve paid thousands of dollars in tuition.
We also spend money on continuing education.
With all of the above expenses taking a free case costs us money.
Yet every homeopath I know does take free cases.
Willingly and happily.
But they have to limit them.
Or else they wouldn’t have a viable practice.
That’s the simple answer.
There are also more complex reasons why every case can’t be free.
One is that no other profession is expected to give away their services.
If you call a plumber you expect to pay him.
The same with an electrician.
If you visit the doctor you expect a bill.
Maybe it’s because we’re dealing with homeopathic recommendations.
Something that’s intangible.
You can’t see it. You can’t touch it. It doesn’t take up space.
But therapists and lawyers operate in the same realm.
They sell advice.
Yet no one demands they work for free.
Why Homeopaths Can’t Take Your Case For Free
I realize we’re dealing with health.
We’re dealing with people’s lives.
A lot of people want to feel better.
Yet they’re tired of mainstream medicine.
They want something different.
Oftentimes they’re desperate.
Maybe that’s why there’s a growing expectation that homeopaths should work for free.
Lately on Facebook we’ve seen tense discussions.
Why can’t we just take a free case, when people say they can’t afford a consult?
Invariably these conversations are uncomfortable.
Because they put us on the spot.
There’s another reason more people expect free care.
I’m convinced it’s linked to the Facebook Repertory-On-Demand groups.
People have gotten used to getting instant remedy suggestions for acute problems.
So when they have more complex issues they also want free care.
Sometimes the requests are aggressive and energy draining.
Like many other homeopaths, I honestly wish I didn’t have to put a price on my knowledge.
But reality dictates otherwise.
Why Can’t Homeopathy Be Free?
Then there’s the REAL REASON we need to charge clients.
I’m sure many other practicing homeopaths have seen this too.
In general, people don’t value what they get for free.
When we give our services away people don’t take them seriously.
They don’t always take the recommended remedies.
They don’t follow up.
They don’t reach out to us when they need to.
We don’t always hear if the remedy worked.
Part of this may be due to the fact they don’t want to bother us.
Because they’re getting free care.
Overall, there’s not the same commitment we see with paying clients.
So we don’t get the same good results.
I mentioned financial realities above.
But lack of commitment is by far THE BIGGEST OBSTACLE to extending our services for free.
There’s nothing more discouraging than to give a gift.
Only to have it returned unopened.
When you see this pattern repeat itself you quickly realize that free care can be a waste of time for everyone involved.
Because it’s not valued.
We like to see results.
We want our clients to feel better.
It’s a great disappointment if this doesn’t happen.
We quickly learn that one way to boost our success rate is to limit free cases.
Because getting well is hard work.
Homeopathy works best if you remove obstacles to the cure.
Someone with money in the game is much more likely to make the necessary lifestyle changes.
So our remedies can do their magic.
When You Can’t Afford A Homeopath
But what if you truly can’t afford a homeopath?
What if you really are up against the wall financially?
Thankfully there are options.
Various schools throughout the US offer care that is moderately reduced, compared to paying a regular homeopath. (One school, though, seems more expensive than the cost of seeing a private homeopath.)
Your case will likely be taken by a student, and overseen by a more experienced homeopath.
You may or may not be able to stay with this student homeopath after graduation. (This is NOT a good option for a serious acute case that requires immediate attention. Because you can probably only reach the school during business hours. Then it may take time to get a response.)
You can also ask a homeopath you know for a reduced rate if you’re on public assistance.
The topic of free care is becoming increasingly uncomfortable.
So I write this article in hopes of fostering discussion.
So we all understand each other a little better.