Naomi Aldort problem
In August 2013, this description was still on Amazon UK:

The larger problem is below, but newer things have been sent to me:

A mom in the UK wrote this in 2011:

A few years ago I had a telephone consultation with Naomi. $100 dollars later I was given the advice that she could help me parent better by having weekly $100 sessions! [I would need to check with my husband - it may have been £100 back then. Thats pounds so dollars would be more. I dont honestly remember but it was an hour we paid for.]

During the conversation she put me on hold twice to take other calls. I was advised Lennon was involved in some very important recital and she had to take the calls. I was directed to change the family diet to sugar free, grain free. The conversation was over an hour. My husband paid for it and Naomi informed me that she didnt understand why women still had joint accounts. She then published in her newsletter that women should empower themselves by being more independent


Someone who had an online collection of quotes (one still accidentally had the PhD in it in 2012) wrote:
We took them all down a few years ago when the PhD situation arose, not so much because the degree was "fake" but because I could no longer endorse Naomi personally due to the way she interacted with me about it.


An editor from The Mother (UK) in which Aldort was previously published makes a statement about the credential disclaim: http://themothermagazine.blogspot.com/2011/07/feet-of-clay.html "She has used a fake Ph.D. to enhance her credentials, thereby enabling her to charge hundreds of dollars for her counselling work. It also means that for Americans they can claim their consultations off their insurance. There's only one word for that: fraud. She has lied a number of times about this so-called degree (including on live TV), and as a result has left a lot of wounded and betrayed families in her wake." [Veronika Sophia Robinson]
THURSDAY, 7 JULY 2011 Feet of Clay

By Veronika Sophia Robinson

I’ve never been one for having idols or raising people to a God or Goddess-like status. We’re all human, and we all make mistakes. It’s simply part of our journey on this Earth.

If you’ve been reading The Mother magazine for some time, you might remember a regular writer: Naomi Aldort. I first came upon her work when I was a brand new mum. She’d written a piece on toddlers for a Canadian magazine I treasured, called Nurturing. I thought the piece was brilliant.

So some years later when I was editing The Mother, and she approached me about writing an advice column, I was swayed easily. It didn’t take long though for me to see that something wasn’t quite right (for me). Turns out that the ethos I adhere to so dearly, about putting a baby’s needs first, wasn’t so important to her even though she advocates 'attachment parenting' ~ at least that’s how it appeared when material she’d written elsewhere (on the other side of the world) was advocating ‘crying it out’.

We dialogued about this, and other things I felt extremely uncomfortable about. Some of the advice she was trying to offer via our magazine was simply unacceptable. I do appreciate the Byron Katie philosophy of things other people do being none of our business, but if a mother is wanting advice or support because her husband is beating a child, then, I’m sorry, but it IS our business. It’s ridiculous to suggest turning a blind eye to it and becoming ‘comfortable’ with it.

The other difficulty that came up for many people is that she has ‘perfect’ children, and why aren’t anyone else’s like hers? They must be doing something wrong. WRONG! As I wrote in a recent blog, to expect ‘perfect’ children (and what does that mean anyway?) is cruel. But hey, if your kids are perfect what a great way to earn money!

I’d also been asked to write a quote for her book Raising Children, Raising Ourselves. Writers only ever send a chapter or two, and somehow you’re meant to praise the whole book. I regret endorsing a book which ‘slips’ in a few lines about letting a baby cry it out. Most people wouldn’t even notice it, but for me it jumped off the page. My heart sank. I no longer endorse books unless I get to see the complete manuscript. Likewise, I don’t review books unless I’ve read every line.

Needless to say we parted ways. Authenticity is important to me. It’s not the first time a writer and I have parted ways, though I must say it’s easier if they’re in another country than, literally, on your doorstep. I don’t expect writers to live lives of perfection, but I do expect them to walk their talk and not pretend they’re something they’re not. It’s a bit like raw food teachers eating fish and chips but advocating to their devotees to eat nothing but kale and superfoods! Something not quite right, is there?

I do expect that writers understand the power of their words, and realise that people ‘hang on to them’ ~ so their lives should match their writing. If they have struggles, then they should share that instead of suggesting everything is all roses and white picket fences. That sort of fantasy doesn’t help anyone.

I don’t imagine Naomi can recover (career-wise) from what is making headlines across Facebook and parenting e-groups around the world. She has used a fake Ph.D. to enhance her credentials, thereby enabling her to charge hundreds of dollars for her counselling work. It also means that for Americans they can claim their consultations off their insurance. There’s only one word for that: fraud.

She has lied a number of times about this so-called degree (including on live TV), and as a result has left a lot of wounded and betrayed families in her wake. The degree was ‘paid for’ from an on-line college that awarded the degree for ‘life experience’, and didn’t do any checking into one’s credentials.

In my experience, many women have had sessions with her that they’d saved up for a long time for, only to have come away from the sessions feeling like rotten mothers. If you go to someone for counselling or mentoring, it shouldn’t matter where you are on your particular journey ~ the role of the counsellor or mentor is to hold your hand, not whip you. It doesn’t matter whether someone has a degree or not, or whether they have fifty years’ experience or are working intuitively, what matters is that you feel like the relationship works for YOU. The session is always about you, not about them or their baggage.

I don’t want to kick Naomi while she’s down, but because I've been asked I did feel I should be upfront about my experience, without, of course, going into too much detail. This is the only public statement I'll be making.

Always trust your intuition. And if someone is charging hundreds of dollars for a session, ask yourself if the money is better spent on nurturing yourself so that you can relax enough to go inwards and find the answers you’re looking for.

By all means admire people and their work, but always be wary about looking up to them because one thing's for sure: you'll soon find that, like everyone else, they have feet of clay.
Posted by The Mother magazine at 11:12


http://www.sevenlockspublishing.com/ Even in February 2011 has the bio: [naomiPhD image]
http://web.archive.org/web/20080724232544/http://www.aldort.com/family-retreat.html WayBack machine's evidence of her having charged families from $5,000 to $9,000 to stay in her guest house for a few days with therapy sessions. (current page)
"I don't think that many HHM would go to the extent that Naomi Aldort went to to bring up her children, or have the support that she had. She has not had to work while brining up the children, and has also stated that she got her husband to do most of the cooking and cleaning too so she could focus on the children. It sounds like her husband is a bit downtrodden, in one of her newsletters she talked about how she gets him to pee sitting down so he doesn't make any messes."

and

"i was reading on someone's blog that she's been using the PhD credential since before 2003 when she said she received it? i don't actually know if this is true, but wouldn't be surprised."

both from http://community.babycentre.co.uk/post/a14367075/naomi_aldort_-_fraud_and_cio Web archive March 12, 2005 did not list PhD on the bio page
http://web.archive.org/web/20050312035513/http://www.aldort.com/biography.html

November 4, 2006 does list it:
http://web.archive.org/web/20061104025739/http://www.aldort.com/biography.html

BELOW IS THE TEXT (and some images) of three blogposts. The internal links there don't work, but the three are:
http://mdcsurvivors.blogspot.com/2011/07/pay-no-attention-to-man-behind-that.html

http://mdcsurvivors.blogspot.com/2011/07/pay-no-attention-to-man-behind-that_11.html

http://mdcsurvivors.blogspot.com/2011/07/pay-no-attention-to-man-behind-that_4079.html

You can read them directly, there, but I have saved the texts because sometimes blogs are gone overnight, and this information is important. —Sandra Dodd
http://mdcsurvivors.blogspot.com/2011/07/pay-no-attention-to-man-behind-that.html

Monday, July 11, 2011 Pay No Attention to the Man Behind That Curtain: The Questionable "Expertise" of Naomi Aldort, Part One
By Anon of Cleves

Every parent has wondered at one time or another why kids don't come with clear instructions: How do these little beings work? what can I do to make sure they do well in life? and how can I get from lunch to bedtime without losing my everlovin’ mind? Throughout the ages, experts have emerged to provide advice to eager parents. Parenting is tough work, and our appetite for “professional” advice, designed to help us navigate through the new world we enter when we become parents, has seemingly only grown since the days of Dr. Spock--the famous American pediatrician whose Baby and Child Care (1946) is one of the best-selling books of all time.

One among today’s generation of parenting experts is a Washington State woman named Naomi Aldort. You may recognize her name from the pages of Mothering Magazine, where her writing has been featured; or from the very popular mothering.com website, where she held a post as a resident expert in child rearing, answering questions from readers in an “Ask the Experts” forum on the site. You might have attended a talk given by her at a La Leche League conference, or purchased one of her CD lecture sets. You might even have scheduled a personal phone counselling session with her, and billed your insurance company accordingly. Or, perhaps most likely, you may know of her 2006 book, Raising Our Children, Raising Ourselves: Transforming parent-child relationships from reaction and struggle to freedom, power and joy.

Over the past half-dozen years, as her popularity and influence in the parenting world has grown with the publication of her book, Aldort has presented herself as the recipient of a doctorate in psychology--that is, an acknowledged expert in child development and parenting. With the title “Ph.D.” appended to her name, Aldort has dispensed advice to parents through her writings, public speaking engagements and through private sessions directly with individual parents. She has also used the title “psychologist.” In the United States, only someone who holds a valid license to practice as a psychologist, in addition to a doctorate in psychology, may use this title (with a few specific exemptions, such as school psychologists). (Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Psychologist#cite_note-6)

Aldort’s advice veers far from the mainstream; she has gained considerable attention and traction in the natural or alternative parenting world with her unconventional approaches to resolving parenting issues. Parents may have been comforted by the notion that, while her ideas might seem radical and her approach far from contemporary North American parenting norms, that advice and perspective was developed and assessed through the rigorous process of obtaining a doctorate, and that her capacity to offer advice to others had likewise been tested and validated through the professional psychologist licensing qualification. For a sleep-deprived new mom or a parent of an older child wondering how best to steer through a parenting challenge, the three little letters after Aldort’s name, together with the “psychologist” title, may well have functioned as a “Good Housekeeping Seal of Approval” on the advice she dispensed.

And what are some of Aldort’s unconventional parenting ideas? In one startling example, she has suggested that young children experience the process of falling asleep as “like death” and consequently they should never--not ever--be left to fall asleep on their own or even left alone once fully asleep. Instead, “bedtimes” are to be eschewed while the entire nuclear family falls asleep at their own pace, in the same setting, with no solitude permitted for any member and with baby in constant, full-body contact with mother lest they experience a “terror” so overwhelming there are no words available to describe it. (Source: http://www.naomialdort.com/articles10.html)

In another instance, a mother asks Aldort for advice regarding a child who “If anyone says anything to her, our friends, complete strangers, whoever, she will tell them ‘Go away’ or ‘you’re stupid’ … Sometimes she will even randomly hit people as well.” Aldort advises the mother:

A child has no way of being “rude.” The word “rude” is your interpretation of her actions or words. A child is too self-centered to bother with doing anything to another. She is busy doing things for her own sake only...If you tell your daughter that her words can hurt people’s feelings, you are teaching her to get hurt by people’s words. This sets her up to being emotionally weak and dependent on what others’ say...How exciting it is that your child stands up for herself...How I wish we could all retain this level of honesty and were not trained to feel hurt by words...don’t teach her that words can hurt. They cannot.

(Source: http://www.mothering.com/child-rude-random-people)

In other words, if your child is hurting people and calling them names, don’t correct that behavior--or you are training your child to be a victim.

A poster on the Mothering.com forums shares another tidbit of unconventional advice gleaned from one of Aldort’s phone sessions:

have you read or heard of Raising Our Children, Raising Ourselves by Naomi Aldort? We did a couple of phone consultations with her recently (as some may know we have a bit of a challenge with our oldest boy, 10) and she said that part of his issue was having all the younger siblings and how it has taken away from him. She said it is like bringing home another lover to your bed and telling your husband he should be so happy about it! I don't know- but she said ideally you would never have siblings closer together than 7 years

(Source: http://www.mothering.com/community/forum/thread/1308918/birds-do-it-bees-do-it-even-ladies-in-their-forties-do-it-40-spring-ttc/400#post_16512820)

One would hope that someone making such outrageous and shocking suggestions as this--that even a grade school-aged child cannot be left alone to sleep because children experience sleep as “like death,” that teaching a child manners and consideration for others will result in them becoming weak and victimized, and that having a second child is akin to having an extramarital affair--would have the weight of compelling research and training to back up her assertions. Aldort claimed to be a psychologist with the associated training in clinical skills and research that comes with a Ph.D. in that field. But what if the academic weight of the Ph.D. and the heft of the professional psychologist license were nothing but an illusion in the case of Naomi Aldort?

What if Aldort hadn’t earned a doctorate and was not, in fact, a licensed psychologist, but instead traces her intellectual development and approach to her “study” with controversial figures such as Werner Erhard (founder of the 1970s “EST” seminars, infamous for their profanity and abuse of participants), Richard Bandler (co-founder of the 1970s “Neuro-Linguistic Programming” therapy model, a “fringe” movement which has been widely discredited due to insufficient empirical evidence to support its claims and efficacy), and more contemporary figures including Eckhardt Tolle and Byron Katie--both authors and “spiritual leaders” with no particular academic or professional qualifications?

Would parents have still flocked to her advice, forums, seminars, books, videos and CDs? Would her teachings have gained the same following if the curtain of academic achievement and professional licensing was pulled back? Would she have been invited to serve in the “Ask the Experts” section of a popular parenting site if it was known that her “expertise” was anchored mainly in the murky, EST-y underbelly of the modern self-help and personal empowerment movements?


Monday, July 11, 2011
Pay No Attention to the Man Behind That Curtain: The Questionable "Expertise" of Naomi Aldort, Part Two
By Anon of Cleves

What lies behind the credentials of “Naomi Aldort, Ph.D. and psychologist” and the uncomfortable relationship in the natural parenting community with “experts” proffering “expert advice?”

Aldort's Credentials

First, let’s be clear about what Aldort has been saying about herself and her credentials. In this screen capture (early July 2011) you can see how Naomi Aldort was claiming on her own Facebook page to hold a Ph.D. and to be a psychologist specializing in parenting:

[image]

Indeed, Aldort is billed as "Naomi Aldort, Ph.D." in dozens of contexts on the web, in print, at conference appearances, and including in the pages of her own self-published book. It is either outright said or implied in those contexts that she is either a psychologist, a child psychology expert, or a family therapist/counselor.

However, according to records from the Washington State Department of Health, she does not now and has never had a license to practice as a psychologist in that state, where she has resided since at least the early 1990s. Aldort did, however, formerly hold a license as a "registered counselor." This license was good from August 1994 to June 2010 and has expired. (Source: https://fortress.wa.gov/doh/providercre ... dnt=579963) It is likely that Aldort has not renewed it because she cannot; many people who were licensed as "registered counselors" no longer qualify for any license under new state laws which require mental health counselors to have at least some college-level background in mental health related topics. (Source: http://www.doh.wa.gov/hsqa/professions/ ... efault.htm)

So if she is not a licensed psychologist, and she is no longer a "registered counselor," what is her background? And how does she justify charging $5,000 - $9,000 for "retreats" at her home during which she will provide advice about "parenting, marriage, relationship, food, health, education" and instruct you in "ways to be with your child/ren and in playing power games effectively"? She charges $350 per hour for "counseling", but what is the source of her alleged expertise in that field? (Source: http://www.naomialdort.com/family-retreat.html)

Web searches conducted in an effort to learn more about her background only add to the enigma. It was easily found through public records that she had held copyright on a classical music aerobics program, that she had been involved in some kind of legal proceedings involving forest trespassing, that her maiden name was Katzir, and that she had immigrated to the USA from Israel in the 1980s. It was also easy to find that two of her three sons were heavily promoted by Aldort as classical music "prodigies." But nowhere could anyone find details on where she had attended college or graduate school, or in what degree programs she had matriculated.

Naturally, given the extreme and controversial nature of Aldort's parenting advice, for some people this raised a lot of questions. Starting in earnest in the summer of 2011, and coincident with Aldort’s presence on the mothering.com “Ask the Experts” forum, attempts to get answers from Aldort through the expert forum on Mothering.com were met with either silence--or the typical invitation to contact her to set up a phone session at the usual rate of a couple hundred dollars.

Starting in early summer 2011, when Aldort did not respond to direct questions about her credentials in the Mothering.com forum, and when some of the posts questioning her credentials were locked and removed, several readers began to convene on the spin-off bulletin board Trolls with Wooden Spoons to share their suspicions and dig deeper.

One poster checked the Dissertation Abstracts International database and found no entries by Aldort, which heightened suspicions about her alleged educational credentials. In discussions on the site, Aldort had asked Mothering.com readers concerned about her credentials to email her directly. When this poster emailed Aldort to clarify, Aldort responded that she did not, in fact, have a degree in psychology but that all of her education was in music. Another poster received an email reply from Aldort that read, in part:

What I write here is copywritten. Please keep the content of this email between us...

Please know that I purposefully avoid putting credentials by my name as much as possible, because I oppose the system of academic approval. I studied music, not psychology (Undergrad: Hebrew university and graduate school at the University of Colorado)...

Interestingly, my writing has been taught in universities since 1995 (McGraw Hill Text book)...

Forum readers immediately set to work verifying Aldort's claim about her writing having been included in a textbook. It was quickly established that Aldort’s work had merely been cited in passing and she was not a contributing author, as she had implied. (It's interesting to note that although Aldort claims to reject the mainstream practice of citing one's credentials, she did go on in that private correspondence at some length about the academic and professional accomplishments of her three sons.)

Further efforts to verify that Aldort had completed a doctoral program in music at Colorado failed to turn up any evidence of such degree, although it appears that she may have at least started a graduate music degree of some sort. Later on, Aldort backpedaled on even the music degree, saying that her graduate degree was incomplete.

So the truth was coming out: Aldort is not a licensed psychologist and does not have a graduate degree of any kind from an accredited institution. But this discovery, in turn, raised a number of even more pointed questions.

For instance, as of July 6, 2011, the Amazon product page for her book still read "Naomi Aldort, Ph.D. is a psychologist specializing in parenting." If Aldort is neither a psychologist nor a Ph.D. in music, how on earth did this come to be? Quite a number of websites list her as a guest columnist, cite her as an expert, or contain blurbs promoting her work--all bearing the title "Ph.D." or saying that she is a psychologist, or both!

Using Amazon.com's search inside feature, you can see how Aldort bills herself in the "About the Author" section of her self-published book:

[image: name, PhD]

It was becoming increasingly clear that Aldort must be driven by a profit motive and was willing to tell whichever story she thought would keep her in business. Although she has since gone back and deleted them, Aldort apparently was fond of leaving comments on the negative reviews of her books on Amazon, inviting the critic to partake of one of her $200 phone "counseling" sessions. One such retort (now deleted by Aldort) read:

"If you choose to take phone sessions with me (the author) I can show you much more effective and kind ways to be with your child. The book is not a panacea, but not in the way you see it."
The comment was posted in spring 2010, but deleted on July 1, 2011, in the midst of the breaking scandal. (Source: http://www.amazon.com/review/R3W8DO73QCZ/ref=cm_cr_pr_cmt?ie=UTF8&ASIN=1887542329&nodeID=&tag=&linkCode=#wasThisHelpful)

At about the same time, a forum member from TWWS posted a negative review revealing that Aldort had misled buyers as to her credentials. The review was soon removed from Amazon, apparently at Aldort's request.

Wanting to get to the bottom of Aldort's Ph.D. claims, another forum member engaged her in email correspondence:

Jul 2, 2011, at 5:03 PM, Naomi Aldort wrote:
“Thank you XXX. There is a whole ganging against me going on on the internet.

I left Mothering expert forum for that reason. These women are very aggressive.

I was naive to give out that information believing in their good intention. I don't know any of them as they hide on line behind made up name...”

Jul 2, 2011, at 7:32 PM, Naomi Aldort wrote:
Whether it is true or not is not relevant. It is slander because they use it to abuse my name.

Yes, it is true. That's why I don't have a degree by my name. On parenting I have studied from much more progressive sources than universities and invented my method which I teach to others.

So, the point is not if what they say is true. What they say is irrelevant...

There should not be any Ph.D. on amazon or anywhere. If there is, let me know so I can take it off. If had a Ph.D. in psychology, I would not have it by my name. I am devoted to teaching that our value needs no approval and that each person should decide with his/her own brain, whose service they value. People are trained by school and parents not to trust their own judgement and to depend on external approval. I am too radical for these mothers. I forgive them. It is innocent.

No problem, with "which forum." I don't really care. It was mostly curiosity.

Thank you for your support, and if you see Ph.D. or "psychologist" or even "counselor" by my name, please let me know.

Warmly,

Naomi Aldort

Author, Raising Our Children, Raising Ourselves
http://naomialdort.com/book.html
Parenting phone-sessions internationally
Facilitator of self-realization through parenting
(360)xxx-xxx (This is not the sessions line)
POB (xxxx) Eastsound, WA 98245, USA
naomi@...

And yet...

Aldort has clearly been claiming to be a Ph.D. and psychologist in as many forums as possible, evidently to promote her work as broadly as possible. Who is it, exactly, that is dependent on external validation? Who is “too radical” for whom, here?

[Sandra Note: The original site had several images here, from facebook, a wikipedia edit page... their photos are here. I lifted two.]

She also claims an MA in music when it suits her purposes:

And beyond that, she's not above giving out medical advice:

A poster on mothering.com wrote:

Hello, I am new to site. My 8 month old son got a fever while we were camping now 5 days ago. It has been up to a little over 104 these last few nights...He just seems so uncomfortable and cranky even when his fever goes down during the day! His nose was a bit runny, barely anything and he does have mosquito bites from camping and ate some bits of sticks by accident (if that matters?....) since there are no other symptoms i think teething, but I cannot feel any. I did not experience any of this with my older child. thank you so much in advance if you can answer my question
Naomi replied,
Dear Parent,

This is a time sensitive question and it is now over a week later. A phone call would be the better way to reach me when you need a prompt guidance.

It is emotionally difficult to watch your own baby be uncomfortable and to worry about his health. Please keep in mind that I am not a medical professional and cannot provide medical guidance. I can share m opinion and experience.

Fever is a good thing. It clears the body of illness. It could be a flu or some other inflammation the body is clearing out. I have never consulted a doctor about fever because doctors cannot know the cause unless other symptoms are obvious. Instead, I trusted the process and responded to the child/baby’s needs...

Warmly, Naomi Aldort, http://www.AuthenticParent.com

(Source: http://mothering.com/day-five-fever-and-irritability)


Monday, July 11, 2011
Pay No Attention to the Man Behind That Curtain: The Questionable "Expertise" of Naomi Aldort, Part Three
By Anon of Cleves

Making Excuses

As it became more and more clear that the public was on to her apparent fraud, Aldort began spinning a number of contradictory "explanations" for this purported "misunderstanding." In one private correspondence, she writes:

I have a Ph.D. It is a long story. It is not in psychology... I don't want it by my name.

This link naomialdort.net is new to me. I have no idea who created it. Strange.

My publisher insisted on Ph.D. by my name on the cover of the book. I refused.

We compromised and put it only on the back. Insurance wanted it, so people can collect for sessions... so you see. It is all so so silly and irrelevant...

If you can give me all the links where you see it, I would love that. So I can take care of it fully.

She has a doctorate degree and it's a long story? Or did her publisher make her make that claim? But wait...her book is self-published. Or was it to collect for sessions, for health insurance? Wouldn't that be insurance fraud? Take care of it fully...you mean, complete a cover-up operation? That's going to be difficult, seeing as Aldort has been tooting her horn as a "psychologist" just about everywhere:

In email correspondence with a different person, however, Aldort told a different story:

From: Naomi Aldort

Date: July 3, 2011 4:02:07 PM EDT

I am shocked. This is a strange mistake. Someone, on an interview, calls me "doctor" and I did not correct them (Probably because it was a live interview and would make them wrong and confusing and waste of short time.)

There should be non on my site though. where do you see it?

Where do we see it? Aldort began claiming she had a Ph.D. on her website's bio page in 2005 and continued to do so for years, as shown in these screen captures:

[images...]

At this point, Aldort appears to have run for the hills, letting her 20-year-old son take over the task of deflecting blame. Lennon Aldort writes:

Tell your buddies in the online discussion forms that it's getting old, and that it's time to move on. I too will miss the hilarity of the discussions, but all things must come to an end at some point.

If you're genuinely curious about Naomi's credentials, she will shortly be publishing an official statement of apology and clarification about the whole "Ph.D" confusion.

Warmly,

Lennon Aldort

http://www.LennonAldort.com.

In fact, on July 4th, Lennon showed up in person on the TWWS and MDC forums to “set the record straight,” as it were. (Source: http://www.mothering.com/community/foru ... t_16537407)

The clarification statement, which has been edited since it was first posted, was apparently composed by Lennon, at Naomi's direction. (The blog is shown as belonging to Naomi Aldort.) At any rate, what it presents is yet another story that doesn't line up with the previous ones:

I removed Ph.D from my name two years ago, and continue to remove them as I find them on websites. I assure you, as I will clarify here, that what lead to this title is an innocent error. I had no intention to deceive. I was very naive and downright stupid. I studied music both for BA and graduate school (incomplete). I earned a Ph.D. in psychology, or so I thought, from a distant learning university in London in Dec. 2003.

Then, a couple of years ago, I learned that it was a scam and that I was duped. I was shocked and deeply disturbed. As soon as I suspected that, and even before I was sure, I rushed and removed the Ph.D. from everywhere that I could and planned to eliminate it promptly from the next production of anything in print.

It clearly is not true that Aldort had attempted to remove the credential from her name everywhere; her Amazon profile still lists it as of July 7, 2011, various websites of hers and those of her sons listed it as of June this year, and of course, her Facebook page still listed her as a Ph.D. only days before this "clarification." It could only be true that Aldort had attempted to remove the credential from her name everywhere if she maintained no control over all of these various sites that are directly connected to her personally and for which she holds the copyright.

Interestingly, in her attempt to validate her use of the credential and her practices, she cites her experience learning from some notorious leaders who have been accused of cult-like practices:

I developed my theories and teaching based on studies which included workshops with great psychologists like Virginia Satir and Will Schutz. I also studied the works of Gerald Jampolsky, participated in seminars of Harvey Jackins’s Re-evaluation Counseling, studied with Werner Erhard, Byron Katie, Eckhart Tolle, Richard Bandler’s Neurolinguistic Programing and others.
Questions were immediately raised regarding this statement, and Aldort's son fielded them for her,in a Q&A post. What was this supposed “scam university?” Wiltshire University, a now-disappeared mail order diploma mill in the UK. An academic in Illinois has compiled a dossier on Wiltshire and its questionable practices, showing that it was active in the early 2000s and that it allowed people to purchase sham “degrees” for $3,000. (Source: http://www.hep.uiuc.edu/home/g-gollin/oregon_north_dakota/#wiltshire)

Why was her June 2011 e-mail newsletter still signed "Naomi Aldort, Ph.D."? Well, she says she just cuts and pastes her newsletter text in, and the signature is automated, and she doesn’t proof the newsletters before they are sent out to subscribers.

Why was the Ph.D credential on her Facebook page? She says she didn't create her Facebook page...Lennon did so, without her knowledge. (The obvious followup questions to this--why would Lennon do that, why would Naomi not so much as look at it, and WHY would a son not know his mother's educational background while creating a publicity page for her--remain unanswered.)

Why did she call herself a psychologist? The answer to this question is, as we’ve learned is typical, in two contradicting parts:

She thought she had earned a Ph.D in psychology. If one has a Ph.D in psychology, one is legally called a psychologist. I think she also had no idea that the word "Psychologist" is a legal word. She used it as an english word describing the act of offering emotional guidance.
Most telling of all, why did Aldort not pursue a legitimate Ph.D. after discovering Wiltshire University was a scam? (Assuming she did not know it was such when she made her purchase.) In an answer since edited out of her clarification blog, Aldort said:
Click to enlarge image

I never had in mind doing the regular amount of work to get a Ph.D. I never wanted or needed one. When I saw Wiltshire Universities (sic) offer, and didn’t know it was a scam, I figured it couldn’t hurt to have it.

So there it is: Aldort never wanted to do the work of an accredited Ph.D. in psychology, and felt entitled to practice as a “psychologist” without said degree. After all this "clarifying," and despite the handful of fans who have sprung to her defense, a few things are clearer than ever: Naomi Aldort is not qualified to dispense advice as a psychologist. Naomi Aldort does not have a license or degree in psychology. And Naomi Aldort will say whatever she thinks you want to hear to keep you buying her products and services. Or, if things get too tough, she'll send her son in to take care of it for her.

Update: as this was going out for publication, Aldort added a disclaimer statement to her homepage, linking to the “clarification statement.” No further explanation, apology, or offer of refunds--or to stop her counseling practice--has thus far been issued.


Note from Sandra: The text above was from other websites, mostly (or all) in the UK. Not my words, except the introductory statements of the first few items up top. It wasn't my discovery.