top of page

Addiction and dependency


It has been getting longer in this lockdown and I am changing this column upload from this week.

I am trying to upload shorter column everyday. This is experimental so let’s see how we feel.

When I was in training in my Master program to be a psychotherapist, I had variety of clients such as HIV positive, depressive, bipolar, recovery addicts and so on.

Each client was challenging to me because I just didn’t have any of the experience as a therapist neither I had personal experience of having the same type of emotional issues.

That was around 2000, so HIV was a significantly threatening illness and I never had someone severely mentally ill around me up to the point.

In the Master of Social Work program, a lot of students have related issues if their focus was about psychotherapy, often times they have mentally ills in their family members.

Now as an experienced therapist, I see many of my clients have severely mentally ills in their family members too so I can’t help thinking impact from mental illness and related issues in our lives.

Anyway, one day as I was being trained to be a therapist, I told my supervisor in the program that I had hard time to understand the feelings of addicts. What exactly feels like being addicted to something.

My supervisor was of course a therapist and experienced one and obviously I was wider than chubby in the time. As a matter of fact, I was chubby in my entire life.

As an experienced therapist, we observe a lot from just seeing people. Either the person is larger than average, the way to speak, or posture, or even demeanors.

Those are unspoken languages and they are often times called behavioral psychology too.

Of course, my supervisor knew the fact though she said, “Mitsu, do you like sweets?” and I of course said “yes.”.

Then she asked me if I could give up on sweets. The answer was of course no. As a sweet teeth, you would understand how difficult for you to give up sweets.

Yes, she observed me and understood that I had sweet teeth because I was large.

She suggested to think of giving up on sweets and I instantly understood how addiction feels like at the time.

As an experienced psychologist, I discovered a while ago, addictions and dependency are very similar and only difference is either they have chemical reaction, in precise, withdrawal symptoms or not.

Addictions come with withdrawal symptoms in theory and actually it would apart dependency from the condition addiction.

Alcohol has withdrawal symptoms, headache, thirst, nausea and etc. and other substance such as cocaine, heroine, and so on. Marijuana doesn’t have withdrawal symptoms so there is no addiction to it in theory.

Caffeine actually is one of the most addictive substances and specialists say that addictiveness is worse than cocaine.

I drink coffee everyday so I can call myself an addict in the sense, I suppose.

This topic is going to be continued in the next column planning to be uploaded tomorrow!

Have a wonderful day!!

2 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page