Codependency: Why You Need to Know if You have this Personality Trait.

Codependency.jpg

whatiscodep

Codependency is a heavy term. There is not one simple definition. There are many aspects of codependency, and what I mention here may not encompass it all. But, the base of codependency is that you rely on an individual for your psychological and emotional needs.

To break it down, Melody Beattie from Codependent No More, describes codependency as:

“A person who… has let another person’s behavior affect him or her, and who is obsessed with controlling that person’s behavior.” ( p.36)

Who is this other person usually?

This person is typically a romantic partner, but could be a son or daughter, a parent, a sibling, a friend etc. This person may also have/ is, but not limited to:

  • Drug / Alcohol addiction
  • Gambling problem
  • Reckless behavior
  •  Mentally disabled/ ill
  • Physically disabled/ ill
  • Even a typically healthy individual

So, what does this look like in a real-life situation?

mystory

When I started dating, I dated anyone who would take me. I felt like I needed the love from someone outside of myself. I needed validation. Most of my relationships failed with my face planted on the dirt. I latched myself onto others, and they dusted me off. It wasn’t until I met my last boyfriend that I entered a serious relationship. We dove in hard, madly in love with each other. At the beginning of our relationship I didn’t know that I was a codependent. I needed his attention and his love (his behavior) to make me feel happy and secure (affected me). He was also an alcoholic, and I went to great measures to make him stop (controlling his behavior). Of course, none of it worked. And, it always crushed me when he drank and when his drinking negatively influenced his behavior (affected me). Even after he stopped drinking, I was not entirely happy. I felt like I needed constant attention and reassurance (his behavior) to make me feel validated (affected me). It wasn’t his drinking that made me a codependent. I was always a codependent, and I believe it really stems from lack of self-love and low-self worth.

whatdoesthatmeanforyou

This means that if you are a codependent, there will always be a void that you cannot fill, and you’ll be unable to live to your fullest potential. Your “other person” cannot give you what you have not given yourself. Although this person may love you, and try to give you the validation you need, you will be unsatisfied because you have yet to learn to love yourself. It also puts a huge load of stress and unnecessary strain onto your “other person” and your relationship with him/her. You will also be unable to live to your fullest potential because you are constantly fixated on the “other person” that you have forgotten your desires and needs.  This also stifles the “other person” from allowing them to live to their fullest potential. Because you are their crutch, they don’t feel the need to stand on their two feet.

So, it’s not about “the other person.” It’s about you. The problem and the solution lies within you. It is you who is affected by someone’s behavior, and it is you who is trying to control.

soareyouacode

Below there is a link that you can download and check off what relates to you. This list is taken from Melody’s Beattie’s Codependent No More text. If you find yourself checking off more than 50% in any of the categories, then take the time to fully evaluate your thoughts and actions to see if you heavily rely on other’s for your self-worth.

Download PDF

This will be a series of blog posts, so it doesn’t stop here! Just because you know you are a codependent, doesn’t necessarily mean  your relationships will improve. I’ll link up the healing techniques as soon as I post them!
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4 thoughts on “Codependency: Why You Need to Know if You have this Personality Trait.

  1. wow this was a truly interesting post to read because I feel like my personality is the complete opposite; I’m very hard headed, as my friends say, in a way that I know what I want, don’t settle and I’m very independent. When I was younger I feel like I was a little codependent on my friends and cared about what they thought A LOT. It always saddens to see people being codependent on others, especially young girls… Great post Natalie!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much for taking the time to read and comment – I appreciate it dearly! It is really interesting to hear from others that they aren’t a codependent. I go to al-anon meetings, and basically everyone there is a codependent haha. I think it’s fantastic that you know what you want and you’ve set those boundaries! Again, thank you for reading!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I think I’m the opposite. I’m more of the independent type. I don’t like it that much having so much attention from other people. I’ve always been with clingy partners and yes, of course, it’s good to know that he/she can pick the stars for me or that I am his/her center of the universe but it’s just too much for me. It drowns me. And I can’t swim – both figuratively and literally. Lol. Same goes with friends who want to be always around me. It’s quite killing me sometimes haha! But it’s good to know that they do understand me and accept me for who I am, no matter how harsh I can be at times. But hey, it’s never too late to change. Head up your own life and live to your fullest potential. xx

    mutzii • http://www.theshoenazi.com

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It is stifling, so it’s totally understandable that you don’t like it! People like to romanticize relationships that involve – I’ll die for you/ you are my whole world etc., but the reality is that it’s an unhealthy relationship. It may be totally real for some people, but it’s only because that individual is lacking something and uses their partner to fill that void. I think it’s fantastic that you have friends who understand the way you are! I need that! haha

      Natalie | https://nataliesalchemy.wordpress.com

      Liked by 1 person

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