jackie2's Blog

Dr. Jackie's Mental Health Moment


Lewisburg, Pennsylvania, USA
August 01
Clinical Psychologist
Dr. Jacqueline B. Sallade
Only child of holocaust survivors from Eastern and Central Europe, grew up in Phila., Central PA, and NYC (2nd home). Psychologist since 1970 working with children and adults in wide variety of selttings, including schools, hospital, courts, private office, and prisons.

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MAY 18, 2012 3:45PM

Risk-Dr. Jackie's Mental Health Moment

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I worked with anxious and depressed people today. One woman made the wrong choices several times in her life and can't stop being afraid that something bad will happen when she's least expecting it.  Maybe she feels that she doesn't deserve to feel safe, but I don't risk overinterpretation.  She took many risks before and has become too cautious now. It's so hard to weigh what to try, what chances to take, and whether the lousy status quo is worse than the unknown. A man wants a quick medication fix for his child but the meds seem to increase the child's suicidal ideation. That's not a risk I would take. Another man may choose to leave retirement for work, despite a comfortable life, which could impair his fragile health but also bring money and feelings of success--or not.

How do we decide what risks are worth taking? If the present situation is horrible, it seems easier to risk change. If the present situation is tolerable, there's a weighing back and forth, discussion with others, or trepidation in decision-making. If the present situation is pretty good but taking the risk promises a lot more without ruining much of what's already in place, it's a no-brainer. Every day, people drive, move, quit jobs they hate, choose school programs, date and marry, get pregnant, gamble with finances or in casinos, take drugs (prescribed  or other), smoke and drink, etc.. It's all risky-all the time. We have to wonder how it  is possible to have the courage to move on securely.

My answer has to do with faith in the inner self, knowing that they is someplace safe inside us, where we think and feel anything and know we are alright.  It takes a certain sanity, love of self and life, and inner dignity and courage. That spirit is what I wish on everybody.

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Life rewards those that are willing to take calculated risks. I love your last paragraph. I wish the same for people, and thank you for articulating it for me.
Thank you for this break of sanity. You are now in my Favorites line-up.