Avatar
Please consider registering
guest
sp_LogInOut Log In
Lost password?
Advanced Search
Forum Scope


Match



Forum Options



Minimum search word length is 3 characters - maximum search word length is 84 characters
The forums are currently locked and only available for read only access
sp_TopicIcon
co-dependency addiction?
June 5, 2007
12:15 am
Avatar
feets of clay
New Member
Members
Forum Posts: -1
Member Since:
September 24, 2010
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

Hi folks, I am new here and I have some questions that perhaps some of you can help with. a good friend told me recently that he is a co-dependency addict who has been "clean" for many years. Apparently when he breaks up with someone he goes overboard with withdrawal type depression, anger,obsession etc- to the degree that the person who diagnosed him told him he would probably die if this happened again. So, for all this time, I believe he has been attending 12 step programs to help cope with this. I am not denying the utter misery that he puts himself through when he breaks up with someone, but I am wondering about the diagnoses. I wonder if he hasn't been a victim of the late '80's and early 90's pop-psychology when co-dependency was probably first coined. He is a heavy smoker but not much of a drinker and not into recreational drugs, so there is one physical addiction there at any rate. He seems to think that he can never have a love relationship again because of this so-called addiction. He has lead a very lonely life because of this diagnoses. I don't know anything about the women he has been involved with in the past so I can't comment on their personalities. I gather that he gets deeply attached, then after a couple of years they both start to find fault, things explode and he goes into this utter downward spiral that lasts way beyond normal break-up despair (whatever that is!).

Is there some other therapy available to help with this sort of thing now? Is this man correctly being told he can't love anybody again? It all sounds very cruel. Denying someone love for the rest of their lives seems almost abusive and unnecessary.

And, yes, I am awfully fond of this person-we are very close friends- that's is why he was able to tell me this deep secret. I just think he is being screwed by the mind repair business.

any thoughts would be appreciated!

June 5, 2007
10:06 am
Avatar
risingfromtheashes
st regis falls, ny
Member
Members
Forum Posts: 14
Member Since:
September 24, 2010
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

first of all, what are YOUR feelings towards this man? Do they run deeper than you admit?

Second, yes, the prognosis seems a little ridiculous. But perhaps you don't know the context in which is was said. Perhaps it was a warning such that the therapist wanted him to be careful about the next person he got involved with - because his breakups were so painful.

Is there a remedy or help?

sure there is...finding a good therapist that you are comfortable with and that works is a good step. Coda meetings (www.coda.org) is another. Adult Children of Alcoholics (ACOA) or Al-anon meetings are also a close second - as the symptoms are similar.

The bottom line is that your friend "loses" himself in his partner...loses his identity and his sense of self. So, when the partner leaves, it leaves him empty and hollow. Perhaps the therapist is worried about possible suicide next time?

In any event, I don't think that it's something he should avoid, if he wants it....but he should take care to get the right kind of therapy to help him be healthy for the next relationship...so that if it doesn't work, he doesn't spiral downward.

Also, perhaps he gets involved "too fast"...so that when the issues start surfacing, it feels like it's too late to back out....so they get swept under the rug until it all explodes and ends. Perhaps retraining him "how" to date in a healthy way may be helpful.

Again, the right therapist is worth their weight in gold.

I had a therapist once that left me in tears time after time...wanted me to believe I was destroying my daughter's future by dating while she was still a child and wanted me to put all relationships on hold until she was out of the home.

Baloney...I couldn't deal with her crap. So, I found someone that had a more sensible approach.

I think there is hope.

In the end tho, it's up to your friend to reach out and find the right help.

June 5, 2007
12:37 pm
Avatar
lettingo
New Member
Members
Forum Posts: -1
Member Since:
September 30, 2010
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

It may sound like his therapist was being dramatic but I had a therapist look me straight in the eye and say something very similar. I think it was because I had told her something I did to my ex during the breakup period which included getting very drunk and driving to his house. I used to exhibit all the symptoms your friend had. Debiliatating depression, where I could not function, eat, sleep or concentrate. I've stayed in many relationship that were unhealthy because I did not want to endure the "withdrawal" sysmptoms. I have since then gone through a divorce and survived. I went through alot of the same stuff but I moved through the stages more quicker. I also want to add I attend 12 step meeting regularily and I have sponsor. I believe by working on your past issues and self esteem these breakup will lose their intensity. That has been true for me so there is hope. I just think your friends need to do a lot of unfinished business work. I lot of the emotional that arise during a breakup have little to do with the person you are losing and a lot more to do with old abandonement, rejection issues. Again, this has been true with me. Someone who has dealt with that and who has a heatlhy self-esteem can handle breakups much easier because they know that they are still an whole and valuable person.

June 5, 2007
1:03 pm
Avatar
bhhunt
New Member
Members
Forum Posts: -1
Member Since:
September 29, 2010
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

Why is that if a doctor told him he had cancer you would not question that diagnosis? Mental illness, is just that, an illness. I was misdiagnosed 40 years ago, and on May 2 ot his year I was finally diagnosed as both co-dependent and bi-polar. Why then, beacuse I slit both wrtist. I know understand why I did things I did. I have been hospitalized in a Psych dept twice since May 2, once for 6 days and another time for 4 days. I also have diabetes, hypertension, high cholesterol, neuropathy, hypothyroidism. In August of last year I was hospitalized for testing in a "regular" hospital because I was down to 122 lbs., and lookded like death warmed over. But no one said to me, oh get over it, it's just a phase. People need to understand that the brain is an organ and can have things wrong with it. This friend needs help, not only from professionals, but from friends.

June 5, 2007
6:44 pm
Avatar
feets of clay
New Member
Members
Forum Posts: -1
Member Since:
September 24, 2010
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

Thanks, rising from ashes for your reply. It helped me understand a bit better. I do wonder if he has had the right help in this. About 18 years ago a therapist told him he was in withdrawal from a codependent relationship after a nasty break up that he could not recover from. I don't know the therapist, of course and I doubt if friend is still seeing him. I suspect he goes to CODA meetings- I just discovered that my town does have them ( I tried to go to one tonight but no-one was there-my friend is out of town so I thought it would be safe to go)

At any rate, for all these years he has told no one about this until me a week ago. I know how I feel about this guy- I care for him deeply and would like to have a full relationship with him-not just seeing him 5 days a week with no sex. His telling me this very difficult thing was by way of explaining why he couldn't follow though. The terrible fear of going over the edge again. However, part of this conversation involved telling me that none of the danger signs had been there in our friendship- now about 18 months old -so it felt safe. Really- we see each other between 3 and 7 times a week-and he stays over often- though on the couch, so this isn't just an idle thing. We're not kids either- 57 and 60!

And thanks lettingo-your insight helped as well. I have had 2 divorces myself and suffered through them, but I recovered without outside help-fortunately. I don't know the things my friend has done during break-ups but I gather they have been pretty drastic. These break-ups happened with what I think were fairly short term relationships- about 3 year max and all of them were long ago. I just like to think that with creeping old age he may have a better handle on the problem-and be able to have a relatively healthy relationship.

bhhunt- I am so sorry for your past misdiagnoses and the terrible pain you are in now. I was questioning if my friend was getting the right information and if what he had been told could possibly be right- 20 years after the fact.

I want it to be wrong. To tell someone that they may never love again is just reprehensible to me! I want him to learn that he can have a healthy relationship with someone-preferably me . And I want to know if it is possible for someone who has been so codependent in the past.

Forum Timezone: UTC -8
Most Users Ever Online: 349
Currently Online:
30
Guest(s)
Currently Browsing this Page:
1 Guest(s)
Top Posters:
onedaythiswillpass: 1134
zarathustra: 562
StronginHim77: 453
free: 433
2013ways: 431
curious64: 408
Member Stats:
Guest Posters: 49
Members: 111148
Moderators: 5
Admins: 3
Forum Stats:
Groups: 8
Forums: 74
Topics: 38716
Posts: 714574
Newest Members:
gegeger, mamahanisha, joachimfreunde, Deressamble, Neakey, ronaldcarter
Moderators: arochaIB: 1, devadmin: 9, Tincho: 0, Donn Gruta: 0, Germain Palacios: 0
Administrators: admin: 21, ShiningLight: 572, emily430: 29

Copyright © 2021 MH Sub I, LLC. All rights reserved.
Terms of Use | Privacy Policy | Cookie Policy | Health Disclaimer | Do Not Sell My Personal Information