Many people often find themselves just repeating the same old unhealthy relationship patterns. This happens despite their opposite intentions to do so.
Codependent relationships are very common. Codependency in the form of a relationship is when two individuals that have dysfunctional personality traits or qualities, get together and they become worse. This creates enmeshment and it becomes unclear where you begin and your partner ends.
Do you ever see couples still together even though they look extremely unhappy? Do you wonder why on earth would they stay together? We are willing and active participants in marriages and relationships. No one is forcing us to stay in a toxic relationship. the individual stays because they get something out of it. These roles are well defined and set early on in childhood.
The subconscious belief is that one or both truly thinks they deserve to be mistreated. Their self esteem is hindered and their emotional growth is stunted.
The more traditional definitions of codependency focus on topics such as, control, nurture, and relationship dynamics with a partner that is chemically dependent, or one that is engaging in harmful and undesirable behaviors. Narcissism would be an example of one. A classic codependency story is the husband that’s alcoholic and his extremely enabling wife.
You can use the questions below to serve as a map or guide to help determine if you are in a codependent relationship or not.
At the time of birth, we are by nature vulnerable and completely dependent on our caregivers. We need them for everything: food, security, safety, and daily regulation of all our needs. The infant’s attachment and their bonding to their caretaker or caretakers is crucial for both their physical and all emotional survival. This basic attachment makes the newborn reliant solely on the needs and vulnerabilities of the caregiver.
Growing up with a parent that is unreliable and/or unavailable means that the child takes on the heavy role of care taking and enabling. The child here now puts the parents needs before their own. Dysfunctional families will not see this as toxic and problematic. Members of the family then repress their own emotions and disregard their very own needs in order to stay focused on the parent and fulfilling their needs. This is coined “parentification”. The individual now heads out into the world and repeats the same dynamic in their relationship.
Sooner or later resentment will build if you do not focus on your very own needs and wants in life. You find yourself lashing out when your partner does not come through and keeps “letting you down”. Your in constant search of external validation and control. You might find yourself trying to control the behaviors of your partner so you can feel better. You might seem self-righteous, bossy, and find your placing unreasonable expectations and demands the other person. When you realize you are unable to control your partner's moods and actions you then become very disappointed, and can slide into a very depressed state.
Treatment for the codependent will involve exploring ones childhood and the current connection to their partner as it relates to unhealthy and dysfunctional behaviors. One must get in touch with their deep-rooted feelings related to anger, hurt and loss. It is crucial that in therapy a client reconstruct new dynamics in their relationship.
Mental health counseling is highly recommended. These characteristics of one's personality are ingrained and very difficult to change if attempting to do so on your own. It is crucial you choose the right therapist. This will make a huge difference in the degree to which you recover.
The follow indicators will let you know your on track.
When you've recovered from codependency, you no longer feel compelled to stay in an unhealthy, painful relationship. You know that you are not responsible for anyone's happiness except for your own, and so you can feel comfortable with the decision to walk away.
Find true healing from your past today. The benefits of counseling are overwhelming and truly allow you to restore a sense of peace, harmony and balance within yourself. Call today at 407-967-1327 and let’s start this journey together.