Do you feel like you give your power away in your relationships?
Are you compelled to cater to the whim of your partner’s every passing emotional need?
Or that you can’t relax unless their needs are met first?
The only problem is their needs are never really met, are they?
If you are constantly driven by the need to ensure your loved ones feel happy and their needs are met, you are likely putting yourself second if not last on your list of priorities. This leads to feelings of resentment, suppressed anger, the sense that you are unappreciated, low self worth – and ultimately to the demise of your relationship…with them or with yourself.
When this happens, you often feel it’s the other person’s fault. You might see them as selfish, or not as strong as you are so you have to compensate or help them. You might feel that unless you are there to manage it all, things would fall apart or be less than ideal. You might even feel that it’s your responsibility to fix it or make it right, perfect or “ok”.
If this is the case, as much as the other person may give way to your “take over” tendencies, the person driving this dynamic is you. The good news is that since we create our behavior, we also have the power to change it. Codependency is where one person feels like they are sacrificing their own emotional, physical, or financial needs for the benefit of a loved one.
We can recognize codependency when a person feels that their happiness is dependent on everyone else being happy and everything being in control. The inner dialogue is “I am responsible. Once they are happy, everything will be okay.”
The truth is deep down your loved ones subconsciously lose a bit of respect for you when they know that you are putting your needs way, way after theirs. Not that supporting and nurturing them isn’t appreciated…just not at your expense. And if you were to be honest, hasn’t it always backfired on you? Do you ever feel or get accused of being needy, clingy, smothering, suffocating, when all you wanted to do the whole time was help. Or was it? Deeper down is there a fear that maybe you will lose approval in your relationships? Or lose control? Or perhaps your sense of security? If you answered yes to most, if not all, of these questions, then it’s time to evaluate this pattern of behavior to upgrade to a better life.
The codependent personality can appear as a confident, decisive, head of the family and a pillar of strength. They secretly and unknowingly have low self worth, bordering on self hatred, self repression with an abundance of stored anger and guilt.
The defining moment that creates codependency is often as the result of growing up in an unstable household or where addictions or parental “breakdown” were present. They decide that they need to be responsible and make everything “right” or safe.
Often a person with this behaviour pattern will subconsciously choose partners who require special care. They may have an addiction or lack the skills to cope in certain areas of their life so they can come in and “rescue” them or others to feel important and needed. What if there was a way that you could give support, love and care in your relationships without giving away your own sense of identity personal power or compromising your self-respect?
What if there was a way to rid relationship codependency and move towards emotional wellness and relationship recovery?
- The first step is always awareness. Where are you exhibiting this behavior pattern in your life.
- The second is realizing the impact this behavior pattern is having on you – draining your joy, creating resentment as well as the impact it has on others and their relationship with you –perceiving you as a “control freak”, a “nag”, “needy” etc.
- Make a commitment to yourself to create permanent change.
- How do you achieve change?
Read Co-dependent No More by Melody Beattie and our book UnderMind to Discover the 7 Subconscious Beliefs that Sabotage Your Life and How to Overcome Them.
You can also watch this video to find out more about transcending personal growth into a state of personal freedom: