“When you have to choose between a relationship and you, always choose you?” Natalie Lue
You give too much. You are the caregivers & rescuers. You feel compelled to help and solve the problems of others. You put up with way too much and receive way too little in return. You are nurturers and you become obsessed with the person in your life and you forget about yourself. You are the one who takes on other people’s baggage, anxiety, guilt, pain, anger and make it your own, spending all of your energy on others and only others. This is “Co-Dependency”!
Now many might think that the “co-dependents” are the ones who are in control when they are actually in control of nothing. They live in a constant state of anxiety that at some point all what they are trying so hard to keep together is going to shatter into million little pieces anytime without them knowing so. They cannot be themselves because they must satisfy others and be who they want them to be. In other words, to ensure that the other person (lover, friend or partner) remain in their life and give them the love, care and security they need they will do anything to please them.
Just how long can someone live with that kind of anxiety, of never knowing when the precariously balanced shoe will drop?
The problem with that is that your entire focus is on someone else, when your energy and attention should be on you, your life, your needs and wants, your health, your goals and you stop being you and you become a shell of a person. What happens when that other person leaves you?! (Think about it …!)
The pattern here is: rescue, persecute, victimization.
- Rescue: Co-Dependents like to save people and take on their problems.
- Persecute: It’s when the “Co-Dependents” get angry at their other person for what they’ve done, and try to make them feel guilty and ashamed for their behavior and how they’ve made them feel.
- Victimization: It’s when the “Co-Dependents” feel used and unappreciated for all the sacrifices they’ve made and all what they’ve endured.
“They give more than they receive and they constantly feel abused and neglected,” says Melanie Beattie, author of Co-Dependent No More.
It’s time to wake up and remember that care-giving becomes a pathology when you don’t allow others to experience the consequences of their actions, and that a good friend and a good partner isn’t the one that is always giving and doing for everyone else. Take a step back and take back your power. Take responsibility for yourself, your life. How? The only way is through detachment. It doesn’t mean that you stop caring, but it means that you start to care about yourself. It doesn’t necessarily mean that the relationship is over, but it means that you are no longer willing to allow the other person’s behavior affect you in a negative way. It means your desire for calmness and peace outweighs the chaos of anything else.
We cannot change other people no matter how much we give up or suffer for them, but we can change ourselves. Enough with putting up with being mistreated and having your wants and needs ignored. Break free and reclaim your life!