Codependency means you are one half of a particular form of a dysfunctional relationship. All relationships are complicated, whether between a parent and a child, spouses, lovers, or even just friends. In a healthy relationship, there is give and take on both sides. For some, though, the giving becomes skewed in a way the feeds a mental health problem like an addiction. Spotting codependency is problematic because it’s not always well-defined. It starts with knowing what to look for, so what are the signs of codependency? Get answers today at Bayview Recovery by calling 855.478.3650.
What Is Codependency?
Codependency refers to a relationship where one party relies on the other for emotional and physical needs that enable unhealthy behaviors like drug use. For example, it might be the mother who always gives in to the son begging for money even though she knows he will use it for drugs. The son can’t get substances without the money, so his drug abuse is dependant on her giving him cash.
The mother, in this scenario, might be codependent. The term refers to the person who is doing the enabling in the relationship. It’s very easy to become codependent because of the emotions involved in relationships. The mother loves her son and doesn’t want to see him suffer. That loves also makes saying no to him difficult.
Codependency can occur in any relationship, especially when it involves process addictions. And because feelings tend to cloud judgment, it is difficult for someone involved to see a problem exists. Often it is those outside the relationship that see the signs of codependency.
Why Codependency Matters
Codependency helps enable dangerous behaviors, especially when it comes to addiction. Those on the giving side of this relationship are stuck in a cycle that is difficult to break. They fear what might happen if they don’t help this person. The mother giving her son money might be scared of what he will do if he is desperate, for example. The codependency cycle can end in tragedy without proper treatment, which often includes things like family therapy and addiction treatment.
What are the Signs of Codependency?
The signs of codependency vary based on several factors, such as the type of relationship involved. Certain traits would make someone more likely to become codependent, however.
Some signs of codependency include:
- People-pleasing: You feel like you must make other people happy, even if it comes at a personal cost.
- Poor boundaries: One sign of codependency is a person being unable to see another person’s right to feelings. Often in codependent relationships, one person is controlling, and the other is compliant.
- Poor self-esteem: Typically, people on both sides of the relationship have low self-esteem.
- Caretaking: Needs to be taking care of someone all the time.
- Poor communication skills: Effective communication is the key to healthy relationships.
Get Help at Bayview Recovery
It is essential to break the cycle of codependency, but how? It starts with getting the help you and your loved one needs, whether it is addiction treatment, family therapy, or a combination of both. Bayview Recovery Center has a variety of programs that might help.
Located in Tacoma, WA, Bayview Recovery Center offers both addiction and mental health services that include:
There is also a family therapy program able to address the signs of codependency and break the cycle. Family therapy works to build healthy relationships and create a reliable family support system for someone with a substance use disorder or a mental illness.