YOUR GUIDE TO CO-DEPENDENCEAnd how to overcome…
What is it? “Codependency is a dysfunctional relationship with the self.“ Co-dependency is a pathological or addictive relationship to people, behaviors or things. It is the fallacy of trying to manage internal feelings in the external environment. It inhibits the ability to have healthy, mutually satisfying relationships.
Where Does it Come From? Developed as a Coping Mechanism Dysfunctional family: one in which members suffer from fear, anger, pain or shame that is ignored or denied.
More than Just Families withAddictions Adapted as a response to Substance Addiction Mental illness Chronic physical illness Anger and Hostility Hyper Critical Environment Physical or Emotional Neglect Any Kind of Abuse
Symptoms Care Taking Low Self Worth Repression Controlling Behaviors Denial Poor Boundaries Exaggerated Sense of Responsibility Fear of Being Alone
What they learn… Its not okay to talk about problems Feelings should not be expressed openly; keep feelings to yourself Communication is best if indirect; one person acts as messenger between two others; known in therapy as triangulation Be strong, good, right, perfect Make us proud beyond realistic expectations Dont be selfish Do as I say not as I do Its not okay to play or be playful Dont rock the boat
The Disconnected Brain Limbic System- the primitive memory and emotion center. The Prefrontal Cortex- the reasoning, evaluative center. The Healing Space
The Upside Never accepting responsibility Being the Special One Feeling needed Being admired as a saint
The Down Side Intimacy problems Hyper vigilance (a heightened awareness for potential threat/danger) Physical illness related to stress Broken Relationships
What a Cute Little Idol…Does it have a name? Creator Creation Worship
Overcoming Co-dependency Self discovery, self awareness, pulling away from care-taking behaviors, and being responsible for other’s moods, happiness or well being. CR, Co-dependents Anonymous. Education about the cycle of addiction
What A Recovered Co-DependentLooks Like Able to… Identify his own needs and make a plan to meet those needs. Learn and practice good self care. Set boundaries with love and respect. Stay Connected without enmeshment Sit with the discomfort of being alone Assert his needs and desires Teach others how to respect him.
True Intimacy True intimacy is when you are able to hold your own experience and feelings, allowing the other to hold their own experience and feelings with no fear or attempt of controlling, changing or judging the other.
To find out more… Michelle Hollomon, LMHC Counselor, Coach, Author Eastside Counseling & Coaching 8201 164th Ave NE, Suite 200 Redmond, WA Ph: 425-999-9470 www.counselingtheeastside.com