Probably not too helpful, but this exact thing happens in my line of work too. People need stuff done and says "WTF no!" in a number of ways when they learn that my time and skill will cost them any kind of money.Sometimes I’m just done with dealing with the ones that think I would anything for free
Work first, then maybe get paid? Check.
Work and never get paid? Check.
Post work complaints about the agreed price? Check.
"Threats" about contacting a competitor so they get the opportunity to work for free? Check.
Negative feedback because your services cost money? Check.
Perceived entitlements or sob stories in negotiations? Check.
Trying to get a refund because they had me on retainer and didn't need me? Check.
Anyone who renders a service to other people has a price tag on their time, so just throw them the fuck out or ignore them if they start costing you potential money. Life is too short etc. etc.