This perhaps goes out to investigators as much as it does clients. Even the most stout and harden of investigators have fallen into the “no contact” trap. That’s my broad way of saying not delivering case reports, not replying back, and things of that nature. Even I’m guilty of it. You go into this field with high hopes and depending on your reputation, area, or what-have-you your case load can seem a tad overwhelming. Coupled with the fact that most every team in existence does this free of charge; meaning we have jobs, families, lives, maybe even other passions… it’s important to look at this cornerstone of the field.
I think to begin I’ll give examples of my own shortcomings to delivery.
Crazies and meanies…: That’s right. It’s even in our handbook for members and given to clients on the waiver we have them sign. We can and will drop communication with you for whatever reason we deem fit. We are under no obligation to deliver a case report or keep you posted on new developments. We do this free of charge and too often those asking us into their home are straight up nucking futs or rude and belligerent. Why would we want to continue working with you?
We once had a woman call us out who, at the end, was very rude to us. Like the kind of rudeness you don’t typically see in people. This was due to the fact that we had, at the end of the day, gotten nothing from her location that she “knew was haunted”. She had been conducting her own EVP sessions for nearly a year and had convinced herself that her “devil worshipping” step-son had put a curse on them. When one of my team members had encouraged her to stop conducting her own sessions (investigators know why) she insisted we leave on the spot.
For the next year she had team after team at her location. Each one deciding to cease contact with her. Desperate, she reached out to us again. Namely the team member who asked her to stop doing her own sessions, and stated “whatever is in here must be really evil. no one contacts me back. no one shows me their evidence”. Unable to see that perhaps it didn’t exist or it wasn’t as bad as she made it out to be and that maybe the problem with these other teams were her and not, in fact, the “evil spirits” lurking in her home it took some work and I don’t know if it stuck with her but my team member tried to get her to see that the problem was her and not her home/haunting.
Overwhelmed and harassment: Sounds dumb. Why not deliver anyway? This portion has as much to do with your harassing the team as it does with their being overwhelmed. Remember, we do this free of charge and at the cost of our own personal time away from our friends and families. It should be standard for teams to insist on longer delivery ETAs if they begin to notice they have trouble doing so. A norm, even for us, was 2 weeks. We could almost never hit this. Once the thrill of the field dies down within you (but you still love doing it) ETAs become longer and longer. We now have a 4-8 week ETA and clients almost never have a problem with this.
Keep this in mind. We come into your home and stay for 4 hours. We setup 4 audio recorders. 3 video cameras. and have 2 photo-cameras actively getting shots. The audio and video alone will take 28 hours to go through. Personally I can spare maybe 2 hours a day to go through this and that’s on days I can actually spare it. It may sound bad on my part. Why do this if you can’t or won’t give it the time it needs… well it’s that not simple. As stated we have families, work, and much more to be concerned with. We love what we do and give it the time we can. I’d argue this is a norm for most active investigators.
There’s more. And I’m sure many of you enthusiast are already running through other examples in your heads. It happens.
So I urge all clients. Be respectful. Because a team can drop you. They can cease communication with you. Work with them on a time-frame. Don’t be afraid to ask questions and be clear with what you want out of the investigation. And feel free to hit me up here on the site if you have any questions.