Jan 17, 2021

Are You Codependent

by Lisa A. Romano

codependence codependency recovery codependency recovery program codependent people

Are You Codependent?

  • Do you struggle to set healthy boundaries?
  • Are you a people pleaser?
  • Do you stay in toxic relationships longer than you should?

When I did not know I was externally focused and detached from the self, I felt like I was going crazy. I kept doing for others what I thought a 'good' person should do, and yet, within me, I felt lonelier and grew angrier as time went on. I had no clue I had a dependent personality and that I was suffering from codependence. 

People pleasing, seeking approval, subjugating my needs for the sake of others, all while stuffing my emotions, was a way of life. Depression, anxiety, rumination, and fear had begun to impact my mental health. Life became increasingly more frustrating and I had no idea what was wrong. 
I had become a codependent person and my life was falling apart. 

Codependent Relationships

As a child, I had very low self-esteem. I had no sense of identity and lacked the ability to understand what a healthy boundary was. My parents were adult children of alcoholics, and they were in a codependent relationship. Even though their relationship was codependent, neither of them recognized this to be true. Our family was enmeshed, lacked boundaries, and was in denial of how codependent we were upon one another. 

In our home, we were not permitted to speak about our emotions. We were expected to smile on cue and to deny what we really felt. Throughout my life, I suffered from negative self-talk, and lacked self-compassion.  I did not feel good enough and I believed it was all my fault. 

Lack Self Acceptance

There was no self acceptance. In my mind, I was unworthy of love. I judged myself mercilessly and believed it was my fault I felt so disconnected from my family. On the road to recovery, learning the art of self acceptance has been a gift. Codependency recovery requires self acceptance, as well as self compassion. Without raising one's understanding of why one develops codependent behaviors, it is nearly impossible to recover from codependency. 


Codependent Person

Codependency recovery required that I come to terms with the idea that I was a codependent person. I relied on others in unhealthy ways. I lacked healthy boundaries in relationships and believed it was my place to anticipate the needs of others all while ignoring my self. I had a codependent relationships with my parents, siblings, partner and friends. Living in a state of codependence had become a way of life for me. 

It was not until I read Codependent No More, that I truly understood myself as a codependent person, who had yet to learn how to deal with unpleasant feelings, negative emotions, and shame. 

Codependence Makes You Angry

Codependents complain but we rarely end toxic relationships. In most cases, it is because we simply don't know how to do so. In some cases, we have done such a great job pretending we are happy with our partners, we are too embarrassed, to tell the truth. If we are in relationships with those with high levels of narcissism, we may be caught in patterns of seeking approval from someone who is capable of exploiting our need to be needed. 
If you are codependent, you may be angry because you feel stuck!

Open Communication

Learning to speak freely about our mental health, codependence, and codependent behaviors can be intimidating. Codependent people struggle with self acceptance, and self compassion. We generally feel overly responsible for things that are not our fault, which can make healing our codependency upon others extremely difficult. We have been programmed by family members that it is safer to not speak our truth, or reveal our true emotions. Our low self esteem triggers our shame and challenges us to set healthy boundaries in our relationships. One of our goals is to learn to become more open with our communication with those we can trust. 

Codependency Recovery is a Process

Codependent recovery can be a lifelong process. Relationship problems can soften over time as codependent people learn to heal the wounds that caused low self esteem and feelings of unworthiness, such as those associated with being the adult child of an alcoholic. 

There is Help

The 12 Week Breakthrough Codependency Program can help you on the path toward codependency recovery. If you struggle with setting healthy boundaries, and relationship problems, and you are a people pleaser, this codependency recovery program can help you find your voice, speak your truth, heal your inner child, feel your feelings, and learn to find the confidence to set boundaries like a boss!

It will take time to heal the family issues responsible for codependence and this step by step codependency program can help you reclaim your sense of self and live an autonomous life, free of needing to be needed!