#1 What is a Codependent Relationships?
The codependent personality type has one main characteristic: someone who is always trying to fix another. On the contrary, in a healthy relationship there’s an even exchange of needs, wants, and desires.
Each member of a codependent couple usually has two opposing roles: the giver (or provider) and the taker (or receiver). They seek out relationships where they’re always needed because they worry if they don’t give enough then they’ll be alone. But the stress of trying to maintain the relationship leads them to overextend themselves physically and emotionally so they stay in unhealthy relationships for too long. Givers, on the other hand get more than they give.
This relationship dynamic forms an unbroken cycle. One person tries to compensate for their partners’ shortcomings by giving them too much while the other avoids taking responsibilities. They start acting dependent on one another; they rely on one another not to give them love and care, but because they need someone to be their source of security.
Content of Article:
- #1 What is a Codependent Relationships?
- #2 Codependent Relationships vs. Dependent Relationships
- #3 What Makes Codependent Relationships Unhealthy?
- #4 Codependent vs. Healthy Interdependence
- #5 Characteristic of Codependent People Include
- #6 Signs of A Codependent Relationships
- #7 If You’re In A Codependency Relationship, What Should You Do?
- #8 What Causes Codependent Relationships?
#2 Codependent Relationships vs. Dependent Relationships
Sometimes, some level of dependence is good for a relationship. You might feel lonely at times, but you shouldn’t feel lonely if you’re part of a loving family or group of friends.
When working things out between two parties, interdependence works best. Partners rely on one another. It means you don’t just serve your own needs or derive your value from serving others, but you’re there for them when they need you.
A healthy, supportive interpersonal connection involves listening, trying to understand, and remembering someone else’s point of view. Codependence is when that “caring” behavior extends beyond just helping someone else, and becomes controlling or directing them.
Sometimes relying on others – and allowing them to rely on you – for assistance and support is completely legitimate. Someone can be dependent on you for certain things, but they’re not going to take away your freedom and independence.
Healthy dependence also involves you:
- Ask for help when you struggle to accomplish something.
- Let people who ask for too much of us worry that we won’t accept them.
- Share what you need and want.
- Basically, you help out others without sacrificing your own well-being.
- Be confident and comfortable expressing your own unique needs.
#3 What Makes Codependent Relationships Unhealthy?
Codependent relationships doesn’t mean that all people who care feel they’re responsible for others’ happiness. It refers to an unhealthy attachment to certain relationships (such as parents or romantic partners) and dependence on their approval and affection. Responsibilities need to be balanced between each other. Codependents often develop relationships that are at best one sided, emotionally destructive, and even sometimes abusive.
Codependence doesn’t involve just one person taking from another; rather, it involves both parties losing themselves through giving. It is not always easy for the giver to feel loving toward another person at first because they may be unsure whether or not they really wish to offer these feelings.
Another two issues with codependent relationships: One problem is that it gets hard for the one who gives to get rid of the person because they might think they need that support, no matter how bad it would be for them, and another problem is that it makes it harder for the one receiving the help to leave because they may fear not having anyone else to turn to. A taker may become dependent on a givers support and end up having trouble when they don’t receive it anymore.
#4 Codependent vs. Healthy Interdependence
Being dependent on another person doesn’t necessarily mean that you’re codependent. A healthy relationship requires both members to be able to depend on the other for different types of support and assistance. When codependent people give too much to each other, they create an unbalanced relationship.
#5 Characteristic of Codependent People Include
- A person with an exaggerated sense of responsibility for someone else’s actions.
- Tendencies toward doing too much instead of doing less often.
- Difficulties deciding on something.
- You feel generally like someone doesn’t acknowledge your efforts.
- A chronic state of anger.
- A strong need for attention and admiration.
- A sense of self-doubt when asserting themselves.
- A compelling desire to control others.
- Lacking confidence in oneself or one’s ability to perform well.
- Fear of not being able to be left alone at any time for fear of.
- Poor communication skills.
- Unhealthy dependence on relationship. A dependent person will go through any lengths to stay connected with someone else. To avoid feeling abandoned by them.
- Losing the ability to adjust to changes when things.
- Intimacy issues/Boundary.
- Feeling difficult to identify emotion.
#6 Signs of A Codependent Relationships
Codependency often leads to a codependent relationships where one person depends too heavily upon another for their well-being and success. There were no victims in this situation. There aren’t any bullies here. There aren’t any saviors here. If we can let them get rid of those concepts, then they’re getting at the core of what’s going on between them.
Fortunately, there are some notable warning signals to look out for, and many involve various forms of selflessness and negligence.
When your identity is defined mainly through pleasing others and you care about how they react to things, you may suffer from an excess of empathy. Because you worry about what others think of you, you can get into trouble if you respond to people without taking into account how they would really act under certain circumstances. This leads to reactive behavior, which limits your personal growth because you’re not actually thinking about what you want. Your lack of self-awareness means you lose touch with your own desires; you end up feeling guilty and overly responsible for other people’s actions and reactions.
#6.2 Lack of Boundaries
When people in a codependent role play out their childhood experience of being controlled, they recreate the abusive situation without realizing how harmful it was to them. They may feel guilty about it later because they think they caused the abuse, instead of understanding that the abuser was causing the abuse. In such cases, treatment must help each member of the couple take responsibility for his or her part in creating the dysfunctional dynamics of the family. Once family members understand what happened, they can begin to repair the damage done by past behavior. Family therapy helps each member of the couple accept responsibility for his or her own actions and reactions, and not blame the partner for whatever problems exist in the marriage. It should help couples set healthy limits so that they can enjoy healthier, happier lives together.
#6.3 Poor Self-Esteem
Often, neither member of a codependent relationships has high esteem. Each one requires support from the other or wants to help the other. The other has a feeling of inadequacy because he/she depends on another for survival and cannot live without being needed by others. The needy partner feels inadequate and insecure because his/her mate controls him/her or provides only minimal emotional nourishment. Both partners find themselves trapped in an unhealthy situation where they are unable to break free and pursue activities outside their relationships.
#6.4 People Pleasing
We’re all motivated by seeking approval from others. When we become too focused on trying to meet everyone else’s expectations, however, we may lose sight of what truly matters to us. To avoid letting ourselves get so caught up in people pleasing that we forget about our own desires, it helps to remember that every person has some things that he or she cares about just as much as we care about ours. It might take a bit of practice, but if we learn to separate our own goals from those of others, we can begin to focus on our own interests and goals without compromising them for anyone else.
#6.5 Relationship Stress
You should know that any of these things can put a lot of pressure on your relationships. When you can’t talk or respect each other’s boundaries, you’re bound for trouble. The caregiver tends to experience a lot of stress about trying to do everything right, while the child needs security of attachment. Neither is really happy if they’re left alone. But, since one party is typically committed to taking care of the other, none of them is necessarily unhappy. They may argue quite often, especially if the caregiver does something wrong. But, since the caregiver is generally willing to work through disagreements calmly and peacefully, this situation rarely turns into a fight. Either way, you’ll probably have some tension between the two of you.
You don’t have to be dependent on anyone else to enjoy life. Taking good enough charge of your own happiness is what matters, and feeling like you owe someone else for being happy can lead you down a path of codependence. One way to avoid this trap is to acknowledge where you have an obligation to yourself before any obligation to another person.
Dependencies play an important part in codependence. While one member may lack autonomy due to addictions or other issues, another suffers from feelings of inadequacy without being able to provide the support they crave. Both members feel limited by their dependencies; however, each is unable to live a full life until the other takes responsibility for meeting their own physical and emotional requirements.
#6.8 Poor Communication
Codependency is not an individual problem—it’s a relationship problem. And what makes relationships work is communication. People who are codependents can’t talk openly about themselves, so they end up talking about others instead. They keep things bottled up inside, keeping a lot of secrets. But if both partners are willing to open up and share their feelings with each other, they can begin to heal emotionally.
#6.9 Lack of Self-Image
The caregiver may be underdeveloped in her own sense of identity because she has had to be defined by the other person for so long. She may feel inadequate unless someone else (the patient) relies on her. She lives vicariously through the patient. Her life depends on the patient’s well-being.
#7 If You’re In A Codependency Relationship, What Should You Do?
If you’ve noticed any signs of codependency in your relationship, seek professional counseling. Through counseling, codependent relationships can improve and become more balanced and satisfying for both partners. However, both people must be willing to commit to working through their issues together. A partner shouldn’t be afraid to ask for help if he or she feels anxious about their relationship. If your mate runs away from any idea of counseling, then he or she will likely do so regardless of whether you suggest it.
We have a list of things you can do for the codepency relationship type from outside the consulting process.
#7.1 How to stop being codependent
- As soon as you realize you’re the codependency victim, start addressing the situation by taking responsibility for your part in the unhealthy dynamic. Then help others who are suffering from the same problem.
- Talking with a therapist.
- Going for walks or doing things by yourself, like visiting the outdoors, attending sporting events, or watching a movie at the theater.
- Thinking about any traumatic experiences you may have had.
- Don’t worry if you don’t feel any happiness independent from your relationship status. You’re probably already feeling plenty happy without it.
- Prioritise yourself.
- If you really do feel uncomfortable talking to them openly about your concerns, then maybe it would be better to talk about them privately instead. Try initiating a private discussion where you can address their behavior without accusing them of anything.
- The longer you’ve been in an unhealthy codependent situation, the harder it will be to repair things. However, if neither of you wants kids, you could decide not to marry each other. Whatever happens, both partners need to be open-minded about it. It won’t go away just because you’ve been together for five years or have children together.
- You can try saying something like “I know we don’t really talk about this often, but I was just curious whether there might be anything else going on.” You could even ask them directly, “Is there any reason you seem to initiate most of our conversations?” They may actually say something like, “I think you’re the one who tends to want to plan things,” which would give you an idea about why they behave the way they do. If they don’t talk about it at all, then you won’t get the answer either way.
- They may sound like a nice guy, but if he doesn’t make spontaneous decisions regarding your schedule, then he might not be ready for a relationship. A lot of guys are insecure about taking charge of planning dates and initiating conversations. So if your date sounds hesitant, ask yourself why. Is it because he wants to focus on how much he enjoys being with you? Or does he feel uncomfortable asking you out, or feeling dependent on you? Either way, take note.
- Sometimes you just need to stop trying to control everything and let them be who they want to be. Your job is to accept their decision for now and deal with the fact that things might not change after all. All you can really do is choose to be kind and show empathy when they’re ready.
#8 What Causes Codependent Relationships?
Codependency occurs when one person doesn’t feel worthy of loving themselves simply through being loved and appreciated by another person. It usually develops during childhood but may show up later in life.
You care about your partner’s feelings more than you care about yours.
Specifically for partners who are caring for someone, you are tuned into their feelings but tend to not be aware of how you feel.
You need your relationship with your spouse/partners to be emotionally healthy.
If you blame your mood swings on your spouse, then you’re making him/her responsible for your emotions – which is just another form of codependency. But if you take responsibility for your own emotions, then you’re not blaming anyone else at all.
You don’t feel comfortable when you’re alone.
You feel stressed when your husband/wife is not there for you. You’re irritable and impatient when he/she is late or isn’t available at the right time.
You would do almost anything for her approval.
It’s easy for us to criticize ourselves when we feel like our appearance isn’t up to par. However, it’s important to remember that others see us through different eyes, so don’t be too hard on yourself if they think you look amazing. You don’t feel comfortable in the relationship.
If you aren’t having sex with your partner because you’re not sexually attracted to him or her, or if you aren’t having fun together or experiencing intimacy, then it might be time to consider changing things up.
There’s a fair bit of tension between them.
You often fight, and you believe that if only the other person changed their behavior, everything would be fine. The relationship seems stale.
You’re feeling stodgy and stagnated in the relationship. You aren’t sure how to bring energy back into the relationship. Perhaps you are with someone who isn’t right for you.
If you’re currently reading this article about codependency, ask yourself if you may be currently experiencing some form of abuse.