Tuesday, April 5, 2011
Unraveling Co-dependent Relationships
Once you understand that the causes of co-dependency originate in relationship dy¬namics that never got completed, you can begin to see how those dynamics recycle in present relationships, be that marriage or inter social or vocational.
The completion of your psychological birth process is the dynamic that is pressing for recognition all the time in co-dependent relationships.
It is or they are the ghosts of sensations that are ever present and nearly not noticed. It is or they are what drives us to do what it is that we do while we are busy thinking I Had Choice. It is our feelings having us and not us having our feelings.
When you learn to recognize what you left undone or did not have the opportunity to complete, then, with additional support of safe significant others and new skills such as reframing and not over generalizing just to mention a few, you can consciously finish the process that should have gone to completion years ago. With some effort I might add. It is work.
The next step is to identify the co-dependent patterns. The following are some of the key indicators of a co-dependent relationship:
Even though you. have lots of objective evidence that the relationship as it stands is not good for you, you take no steps to change it or break the co-dependent patterns.
You find yourself making excuses for you or your partner that are designed to hide the truth from others.
When you think about changing or leaving the relationship, you feel afraid and cling to it even harder.
When you take some beginning steps to change the relation¬ship, you suffer acute anxiety and physical symptoms that can only be relieved by reestablishing the old co-dependent patterns.
When you do begin to make changes, you experience an in¬tense longing for the old patterns, or you feel scared, all alone or empty.
The main characteristics of co-dependent people are as fol¬lows.
What CO-DEPENDENTS like to do :
Use an external frame of reference. Co-dependents focus all of their attention on what their partner is doing or not doing.
Use the relationship the way someone might use alcohol or drugs. They are addicted to another person and believe they can't function independently of that person or without the relationship they have with that person.
Cannot define their psychological boundaries. Co-depen¬dents don't know where they end and others begin. They tend to take on the problems of others as their own.
Try always to make a good impression on others. This is a way in which co-dependent people try to control the percep¬tions of others. They are people-pleasers.
Do not trust their own ideas, perceptions, feelings or beliefs. Co-dependents will defer to the opinions of others and not stand by their own ideas and opinions.
Try to make themselves indispensable to others. Co-depen¬dents will knock themselves out to take care of things for others that these people could actually do for themselves.
Play martyr. They learn to suffer but do it gallantly. They will put up with intolerable situations because they think they have to.
Are skilled at controlling others. They try to control everything but usually fail because it is an impossible task.
Are out of touch with their true feelings. They distort their feelings and only express them when they can feel justified to do so.
Are gullible. Because co-dependents are not in touch with their feelings, they lack discernment. They are bad judges of character and only see what they want to see.
Lose contact with their spiritual self. They are often cut off from the spiritual side of life.
Are fearful, rigid and judgmental. Black and white thinking dominates the lives of co-dependents.