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Starting Work on Codependence Workbook
August 15, 2006
1:23 pm
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gracenotes
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I am doing great with No Contact. It has been over a month. It has been so helpful to post about all of these experiences and get responses. I have learned so much here and look forward to checking in everyday. All of you have been so supportive.

I started working on this workbook Breaking Free, by Pia Mellody and Andrea Miller yesterday. Its demanding, but it will help me to get to the roots of things. It starts by asking you to write about your abusive experiences of childhood, label them. Wow, just doing that was a real eye opener and I saw patterns I never saw before. Its a tough book, at least in the beginning as she is trying to get you out of any denial, and, unless you have some support, have been in therapy and can deal with some unexpected pain coming up, I would use good judgment before starting.

But, this is going to be an awesome healing experience for me to help get to the root of things.

I am so motivated to have better relationships (I have some now, though), get my past in perspective, feel like I have really forgiven the past, and get on with my dreams without all this baggage. I am ready and starting this.

August 15, 2006
1:40 pm
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myfreedom
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Good for you,
It takes a lot of courage to deal with issues like this and personally I believe it is worth every fear that is faced, every memory that is resurrected and every nugget of anger that is revealed.

I have worked through a lot of my childhood stuff and my life is sooooo much better for it. I haven't covered everything (not enough hours in a lifetime) but I am happier, healthier, wealthier, have more friends, a better education, I could go on and on abou the nice things I have allowed into my life since I got past old issues.

I am going to keep going on it. I just started a new CODA group in my city and that makes two (yes, it's a very small city). I will probably work on this stuff forever put the payoff makes it worth it.

GOOD LUCK on this adventure in the workbook.

myfreedom

August 15, 2006
1:43 pm
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joy2flow
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AWESOME gracenotes!! I too am very motivated to have better relationships, and will look into this workbook as it sounds like just what I need to being the healing process for myself! I've started on getting healthier outside too and started my excercise routine yesterday, and it felt sooo good!!

I'm ready and starting to heal both the outside and the inside!! 🙂

Have a good day!

August 15, 2006
2:35 pm
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thumkin
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I didnt have an abusive childhood per se. Does that mean this workbook would not help me?

August 15, 2006
3:12 pm
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doubleloss
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i think i'm going to go and get that book too, i didn't have an abusive childhood but i have started to notice some patterns and i really want to get to the root of it so that i stop doing that. thanks gracenotes, i'll check it out.

one pattern that has come up is how since first "crush" as a little girl it was someone "unavailable". At 9 years old i had the biggest crush on this boy, we were always competing fore best grades, we were best friends, to this day we are.
"first love" at 15, he was 21 and gay [i didn't know it at the time], next, at 18,one a guy that was a foreign student in exchange for 1 year. it lasted 9 months, beautiful romance but i knew from day 1 it had an expiring date. next one, met husband at 20, beautiful relationship but he's unavailable to me in other ways like -marriage never consumated - biggie eh?, was with him for 18 years. Last one at 38, with seemingly wonderful man that turned out to be not that wonderful, with so many issues I kind of knew deep in side it would be an uphill battle.
So, I see this pattern of falling for unavailable men...i find that disturbing though interesting. I need to find out the root of this so I stop doing it.

August 15, 2006
3:50 pm
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forgottenone
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seriously? 18 years? wow.

how did this happen?

August 15, 2006
4:22 pm
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doubleloss
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we were very much in love. we both stuck to our vows of "for better or worse, sickness and health" [neither of us cheated... i don't know is i should be proud or not: :-)], and i took the whole thing on my shoulders thinking it was ME that was defective or something, been in therapy for years and years, 'til it dawned on me that it was OUR problem. for whateve reason he's never really done anything, so i decided to leave [kind of hoping he would get of his ass and start dealing with himself] but nothing has happened, he's going to therapy twice a month. We are now gearing towards divorce (been separated for 17 months). I am glad to know that there is nothing wrong with me, i function just fine, as i found out with xbf, hihihi.

i know that it sounds weird, it is weird. future xh and i are best friends, we created this safe bubble and i can say i was happy, spoiled to death by him, we've always been very good to each other. i left because i want a "complete" relationship. But sometimes, and particularly after what went down with xbf- i wonder if it's better to be with a man that is kind, considerate, adores me, rspects me and who i love too and we have this great friendship - but that it's not really fulfilling to me. I want that physical intimacy. I dunno anymore. I think fxh is still a virgin, i was until last year. OUch! that sounds terrible, but that's what it is, part of my story.

August 15, 2006
4:22 pm
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doubleloss
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that's why i really want to get my hands on that book!

August 16, 2006
7:57 pm
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gracenotes
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Thanks for all your support on working on this workbook. It is not easy, and has brought up a lot of pain, but pain gets resolved when one is willing to just go through it. Thanks, site facilitilator, for correcting the title. Past the pain, is a lot of feeling good and those nice ah ha experiences too.

Would this book help if you weren't abused? Well, the interesting thing is that we often define abuse as physical, emotional, and sexual, but there is often intellectual and spiritual abuse too. I was so aware of the emotional abuse in my past, but what really came up a lot in doing an abuse history was how I was always so shamed for having some interests that boys have, a lot of subtle stuff here. And shamed for not understanding intellectual concepts that were way beyond my ability at my childhood level. Also, what about a family dynamic where daughter and father are closer to each other than mother and father. In a way that is abuse. Abandonment, emotional withdrawal is abuse too. So is some kid making fun of you.

I would say, at least in the framework of this workbook, that if you are codependent, if you can, in any way relate to this, then you were abused in some way. Could have been by peers, siblings too, social abuse. A big component of codependence is denial, how we do not own our histories, perhaps minimize them, and think other people are accountable. The whole point of bringing this up is not to blame, it is to put accountability where it belongs, on the abuser and acknowledge the reality of what happened. This opens the pathways towards healing.

Yes, do get this book, and you will also need the original book: Facing Codependence by Pia Mellody. It is not easy to ready this book either, but, if things are going to really change, it is essential reading, in my opinion. Anyway that seemingly gets worse in this process can only lead to things getting better.

I am, in many ways, starting a new life for myself and it is crucial to do this work. Good, this thread is starting, and looking forward to talking about my journey through this process.

August 17, 2006
9:19 pm
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gracenotes
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gracenotes,

Did a little more work in workbook these past two days. I have some bronchitits but otherwise I am happy how this is unfolding. I think the first part was the most difficult.

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