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Defining Co-dependentcy
May 5, 2007
1:39 pm
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jv63
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I have been wondering if the definition of co-dependentcy goes a little
deeper than we really think. I have heard some say that the
co-dependent is addicted to the alcahloic/addict/abuser. However I am begining to
think that the co-dependent is addicted to people. The alcaholic/addict
especially when sober displays so many co-dependent traits i think when
we stop using a substance to feel better we begin to use people to change the way we feel. For
example many won't admit it but there seems to be a great need for people
to like us. Hence the "people pleaser" found in both AA and Alanon. Have to talk to someone and keep talking untill we are sure they like us.The
underlying motivation for many of the extremes we go to is to be the
center of attention or to be the one who fixes things "my hero" or who is
perfect. Etc. etc. etc. The co-dependent gets a fix when he or she is
admired for these things rather than seeing that what is really missing
is un conditional love. I think we really just want to be loved and
accepted for who we are. we are to afraid of condemnation so we create the
flimsy facade or mask, and get off on the feelings of being
accepted/loved with the terror in our heart that someone someday will find us out.
Does this make any sense to anyone?????
Pleas share your thoughts on this subject with me. I am trying to understand and make some positive changes.
jv63

May 5, 2007
1:57 pm
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courage to change
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I agree with you. My intuition lead me to realising i need a day for me, but thought i would meet up with friend later on in day, to stop me feeling complete loneliness. Anyhow, he cancelled. Then next friend up bumped into wasnt available. Then text sister to see if she was available this evening, and not. So I am meant to be at one with myself. Am decluttering my filing cabinet, and any way of procrastination is good, but not the true solution. I need to face my feelings and embrace them and just get on with things. x Very difficult though !!!!!!1

May 5, 2007
2:39 pm
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danielle7373
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i am reading "codependent no more" and the author gives several examples of codependency and most of them involve alcohol or drug abuse.

she then explores the definition of a codependent person and says the definition is really fuzzy, but she wants to try to put it in one sentence: "A codependent person is one who has let another person's behavior affect him or her, and who is obsessed with controlling that person's behavior."

Codependency doesn't always involve alcohol/abuse/drugs - those are just the most commonly talked about, I think?

In the book, she says the other person can be a child, an adult, a lover, a spouse, a sibling, grandparent, parent, client, or best friend. This person can be an alcoholic, a drug addict, a mentally or physically ill person, a normal person who has sad feelings.

She says codependent people just tend to be in personal/professional relationships with people who have problems, and then become obsessed with fixing that person.

So I agree with you, based on what I've read in the book, that codependency isn't just about drugs/alcohol/abuse...

May 5, 2007
2:42 pm
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Loralei
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I'm not a people pleaser to people in general. I'm that way in my close relationships with people I love. It's so difficult to establish healthy relationships. I found a series of articles that I've really found helpful and informative. Check out the link for more on codependency. There are other parts you can link to at the bottom of that page.

http://www.silcom.com/~joy2meu.....ndent2.htm

May 5, 2007
2:44 pm
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tiedupinknots
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If you really want to know what is going on read Eckhart Tolle. The Power of Now or A New Earth - Awakening to your Life's Purpose. It will explain exactly what is going on. It is absolutely amazing to finally know some truth. Good luck in your journey. You will find an answer for you if you keep looking. Just be willing to give up/surrender when it is time.

May 5, 2007
2:47 pm
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jv63
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Thank you danielle, that really helps me alot. I am an alcaholic but i really think that i am also Co-dep. and am trying hard to put my life on a better path. The mix of the 2 in my marriage is something we are trying to deal with.

May 5, 2007
2:50 pm
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danielle7373
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jv - there is also a section in the book where the author mentions that the "other" person can also be codependent, too.

so basically two people become codependent on each other...

so you're probably right on target thinking you're also codependent.

good for you for recognizing that you want to put your life on a better path. it's not the easiest thing to acknowledge.

May 5, 2007
3:06 pm
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Anonymous
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All this makes much sense, tks.

May 5, 2007
6:40 pm
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Pom 34
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I read in this very forum somewhere that in the 1st step for CODA it is stated "We admitted that we were powerless over OTHERS" so, yup, whoever up there said that we are addicted to people I think is really on to something. For myself, I am discovering this is true and I am finding out that my behaviors/habits that involve people were learned during my upbringing, which I am exploring and trying to get at the root of with a therapist and by reading helpful books on codependency and (not yet, but going to this week) attend a CODA meeting in my area. I am learning to set bounderies and to my surprise, the people around me respect me in ways that I have always longed for. In the past the behaviors I thought would get me love, respect, trust etc. were not working. The new behaviors (that are so scary to "try out") are the ones that I find working more to my benefit and my family's. Yes, I also see where my husband (an addict of many things) is codependent, but only in relation to my past behaviors. If I can get rid of those, he will have nothing to "co-depend" on since they'll be gone. Anyhow, this is how it's working for me so far. What a long strange trip it's gonna be! 🙂 Thanks for reading, Pom 34

May 5, 2007
6:51 pm
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Anonymous
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I used to say me and xh were addicted before I knew there was such a thing. It all makes more sense since I started the codep route.

(((Pom))) May you rip the results you are longing for. Its so nice that you wanna try to overcome your shortcomings, and that your husband isnt making too much of a fuss over that, it seems... Keep on.

May 5, 2007
6:57 pm
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Pom 34
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(((sinin)))

Thanks so much! I can only do it one day at a time and I am trying not to have expectations, but man, I sure do like it when it's good! Reading things from everyone at this site is really helping me. I wanna nip this sucker in the bud and I know its gonna take years, maybe an ongoing life thing, but I feel I am off to the best start I can have! Nice to meet you, Pom

May 5, 2007
7:14 pm
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horsefly
this is off....be on this forum for years....not just since last year..we can email each other Now? that Nappy is long gone....
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Co dependent is as deep as we let it effect us.....I can only speak for myself but I think it is something very deep inside myself. I know at almost 50 seeing the effects in my life that are not good. I think we just care too much. But if we are not able to handle the caring then that is when we get in trouble. Co-Dependant behavoir is very broad, to so extreme. But when you find out you care more about others than yourself .( plus ignoring your needs) than it becomes a problem. Other than that I think people are normal trying to care and live life with others..horsefly

May 6, 2007
12:53 pm
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gracenotes
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In my healing from codependency, and I think most of it is heal-able, I study Pia Mellody's books. Also, The Power of Now, as mentioned before, is an excellent book, and it has a section on addictive relationships and how to enter into a relationship with someone from more of a place of wholeness. Also, age-old yogic principles, such as being true to self, not "stealing" from others, meaning not asking more from others than they are able or willing to give have guided my life recently.

Pia Mellody defines codependency in her book Facing Codependency as five core systems: These are self-characteristics in relation to others, i.e. the problem is not really the relationship, it is our patterns and who and how we choose to relate.

1. Difficulty Experiencing Appropriate Levels of Self-Esteem (could be low self-esteem, could also be arrogance and grandiosity).
Codependency tend to focus on "other" esteem, looks, money, how well their children perform, etc.

2. Difficulty Setting Functional Boundaries. If our parents did not teach us this, mirrored poor boundaries, it is something we can learn as an adult.

3. Difficulty Owning Our Own Reality, i.e. owning our body, owning our own thinking, owning our own emotions, owning our behavior.

4. Difficulty Acknowledging and Meeting our own needs and wants and being interdependent with others. We could be too dependent, antidependent (I don't need anyone", needless and wantless, and get wants and needs confused.

5. Difficulty experiencing and expressing our reality moderately. i.e. dressing immoderately or dressing way down; thinking in black and white terms; extreme solutions to problems; difficulty knowing what feelings are or experiencing feelings moderately.

Much of this has rung true for me, but much of this can be worked on and healed. Its not pretty to look at, but its workable, and it does get better. The rewards are great!!!

May 6, 2007
1:30 pm
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Pom 34
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Thanks Gracenotes!

Much of this is true for me also. I am working on it. -Pom 34

May 9, 2007
2:36 pm
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jv63
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You folks are really great thank you for sharing. I seem to do so much better when I remember that alot of people are striving to overcome their problems just the same as me. I am part of humanity after all.
JV63

May 9, 2007
2:40 pm
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danielle7373
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(((jv)))

i agree. it is really great to know there are so many other people going through the same thing. hearing other people's situations and being able to share our own stories is extremely helpful, huh??

May 9, 2007
9:56 pm
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Anonymous
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bump

always a handy topic...

so glad I checked

(((Y´all)))

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