Many of my clients take prescription medications for anxiety or depression. All of these medications are known by brand names, as well as generic names, and it can be hard to remember them. Consequently, some of my clients get confused about their medications, even if they are only taking one or two. In fact, if you could overhear a session with me and some of these clients, you might be surprised to hear that many of them do not know what they are taking. When I ask about that, they might say, “Oh, gee, I don’t know, it’s a square blue pill.” When asked about the dosage, once again, “I’m not sure, but I take two a day.”

The question here is this: who is responsible for your well-being?

Addicts are told they’re not responsible for their problem. They have a disease, like any other disease, and it’s not their fault. That may be true, but it’s not the whole story. They may not be responsible for inheriting an addictive personality – if such a thing exists – but they are indeed responsible for getting help.

A burglar tries to break into a fenced house, only to be injured by an electric shock delivered by the fence. He sues for damages, and he wins. It seems the law does not require him to understand that doing a crime exposes you to the risk of being hurt.

In New York City, years ago, a man in a drunken stupor urinated on the tracks in a subway station. Unfortunately, the urine made it to the third rail. He was electrocuted, and the family successfully sued the City of New York. Apparently, it was the duty of the NYC Transit Authority to put signs up, saying, “Do not urinate on the tracks, whether you’re drunk or sober.”

These days, it seems that people have been encouraged to believe they are not responsible for their own behavior and well-being. Instead, someone else is responsible: the city, the federal government, their child’s school or the company that employs them. Some young adults continue to depend on their parents, because they are unwilling to live independently. Sadly, some of those parents believe they should always take responsibility for their children.

It is my firm belief that anyone who is able to do so must take responsibility for his or her own well-being. That means understanding your problem, accepting it and having the determination to get help. As a therapist, I am, indeed, responsible to my clients, to do my best for them. They, however, are responsible for their own choices and for deciding whether to grow, to change, to heal and to solve a pressing problem.

Ultimately, I want my clients to achieve independence from me, and once they’ve accomplished their goal in therapy, I hope they move on and never need therapy again. 

If you are having difficulty taking responsibility for your well-being, are lacking some self-confidence in that area, and are not sure how to get started, please feel free to contact me. The phone number is 219-309-3928. I would be honored to be of service.

For more information, click here Conflict, Part 3.

Thanks for reading!


People act irresponsibly and stupidly, they hurt themselves, and another party