Anyone else recognised codependency within themselves...

I have been doing some research lately mostly about ADD/ADHD as this is what my partner has been diagnosed with and it made alot of sense in regards to issues we have been having.  I decided to start doing a bit of internal searching about myslef and have discovered that I am codependent...

Does anyone else have these same issues?  Is it possible to change a codependent relationship into a normal one?

I am the poster child and

I am the poster child and keep the audiobook (and hard copy too!) of CoDependent No More at my fingertips at all times. I entered counseling, alone, about 2 months ago because of my codependency and am slowly but surely making a lot of progress. I realize now that I have been CD all of my adult life...from my first relationship on. (I am not ADHD, my husband is)

I see a lot of my husband in the book too...but wouldn't dare suggest he read it for fear he'd think I was trying to 'fix' him, so for now I just cherish each baby step I make towards becoming "undependent" and move towards a happier life making better decisions for myself. The book explains everything...exactly how we become codependent, how we behave because of our codependency, and how to detach and gain control of our emotions.

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I dared, then quickly recanted after he said that he'd probably end up just picking apart the book and using what it said against me (I presented it more like helping each other help each other.). I immediately told him 'nevermind' and then later in an email (after I had calmed down from the shock of his boldness) made it very clear that I was setting up a boundary around my books and that he was not to read, open, peek or scan through them. Thank you so much for suggesting the book to me, like, a million thank you's. I'm only halfway through and already things are just so much clearer to me. I'm seeing my part and how it can be different, and how that difference can affect me! Feels damn good! I want to practice every chance presented to me! Something pretty huge happened this weekend, and I'm so proud of myself for how I handled it. The family dog has been showing signs of aggression for nearly 2 years, and it all came to a head when it bit my 4 year old (I had gotten bit a couple weeks before that, but I don't think DH took it seriously because there were no marks or broken skin.). The next day he took the dog to the shelter and for the next two days he was being really crappy towards me. I ignored him and went on about my business. Later in the day he sent me an email saying he was just grumpy from having to give up his dog and how I was probably so happy about it, he even did that thing where he says he has witnesses to back up what he's saying. I calmly admitted to the true things, and let him know that I understood that he was grumpy but that I wasn't going to be receptive of his abrasiveness. If he wanted to be grumpy it was OK, just go be grumpy somewhere else so that he stops punishing me for a situation I had no control over, nor was I even in the room for. And that was that! I didn't get emotional, I didn't try to 'fix' his situation, and I didn't let him affect the happiness of my day. I continued to do what I was doing exactly as if he has never been a grump. I didn't let his mood, his words, or his attitude ruin my day or what I had planned. I just have to say..... IT FELT AWESOME! I controlled the only thing I can....ME! I had no idea it would feel this empowering!

I am waiting for my copy...

of the "good book" lol... I have been making the same discoveries that I have been co-dependent my entire life.  Every relationship, every move Ive ever made, has always been because I just want male acceptance so badly.

DP and I (He is ADD/ADHD) have recently seperated and my DD (9mnths) and I have moved back in with my parents.  I am struggling big time because I feel like Ive lost everything. And DP doesnt seem to be effected NEARLY as much as I am.  I am in tears at least daily, and made the mistake of staying with DP over the weekend.  Sunday night was torture.  It made me think back to the days when I used to come home from my biological father on the weekends... Complete Misery and longing... Although we still act like we are together (Calling/Texting, sleeping together, affectionate cuddles and kisses, etc) it feels so different, almost like the only thing we've got in common right now is we enjoy sleeping together...ALOT...lol...

I know that we both have a lot of work to do on ourselves before we can even hope to have a normal interdependent relationship, but Im wondering if he even wants to.  Im so scared that Ive given him his "way out" and he will no longer want to work on himself or our relationship...  And I guess that comes down to my co-dependence mostly.  That I want to hang onto this relationship at all costs, no matter how wrong it might be at this point in time...

I have started counselling to start my journey into the unknown, and I guess Im just scared of doing it alone... Im scared of doing everything alone, especially raising our daughter if he so chooses to end the relationship with me.  I hate that all along I had this ideal of us raising this beautiful wee girl together, and now its gone...

 

Codependent - Yes and No

I'm only halfway through the book.  With Christmas approaching, it might be a while before I finish!  I can see a bit of co-dependency in myself.  Definitely while I was younger, but lessening as I grew older.  Much of what the book describes is pretty extreme.  I had to stop myself mid-read and realize that some dependency is normal - human.  I think the point is to not be controlled by another and not assert control over someone else.  Moderation in everything - balance.  This quote by Ghandi kept running through my mind, "The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others."  I was at such odds with what the author was saying because of this.  I can speak from experience that this CAN be done in a healthy, beneficial way and is very enlightening.  After weeks of pondering what I had learned from the book so far and thinking about my Christian upbringing that supported Ghandi's word's of wisdom, I was determined to figure this out.  I really felt like both the author of the book and Ghandi were right.  I think the key to losing yourself in the service of others without becoming co-dependent is to draw boundaries that protect your core well-being.  This means you can serve others because you are serving yourself.  The "losing" part happens when you experience the joy of focusing time and attention on another person without going over-board.

 Any time I think back to a healthy experience in servicing others - giving until I had nothing left to give - it involved a positive feeling in the end.  Any time I allowed my husband to cross those boundaries in my effort to "serve" him, I felt it.  It involved a sense of violation.  I guess all these years I had experienced what was good and bad on the spectrum of serving others and I still had no clue that it was MY fault that I had allowed the negative to happen.  I'm finding ways to be open to still serving my husband, but I'm learning what boundaries are healthy for me AND him.  My need to fix my husband disappeared and now I feel a burden lifted from me.  I find I get a good feeling when I protect the boundaries of my borders when I do it respectfully, clearly, and with love for myself and my husband.  I feel like I have so far to go to establish my boundaries because right now I don't trust him a whole lot, so the boundaries I've drawn for him are far and wide.

I'm babbling now, but I appreciate this topic and being able to share this.  I am so curious as to what others are experiencing from learning about co-dependency and how it is helping their relationships.  I want to know what works for you guys and glean ideas from that.  :-)