A codependent person is an individual who develops patterns within their relationships where the codependent individual has a one-sided relationship with another person. In these relationships, the codependent individual ignores personal needs and suppresses emotions in favor of the other person in the relationship. Expert Co-Authored Why choose wikiHow? When you see the green expert checkmark on a wikiHow article, you know that the article has received careful review by a qualified expert.
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Notice if you are codependent. Codependency, also known as relationship addiction, is an emotional and behavioral condition that can affect many different people. In codependent relationships, you may focus solely on the well-being and needs of the other person in your relationship and completely ignore yourself, often to your own detriment.
See if you exhibit codependent behaviors. There are a certain set of behaviors that you will exhibit if you are codependent.
Your may notice a few or all of these at one time or another throughout your life. Ask yourself questions that reflect codependent behaviors.
If you aren't sure you are codependent based on your tendencies or behaviors, there are some questions you can ask yourself that can help reveal it. Do you have trouble turning people down when they ask for help? Do you get overwhelmed by how much you have to do, but never take the time to ask for help? Do you ever doubt your own wants or needs? Or not believe in who you want to become?
Do you go out of your way to avoid an argument? Do you worry constantly about how others think about you? Do you think other people's opinions are more important than yours?
Does the person you live with have a drinking or drug problem? Do you find it hard to adjust to changes in any environment? Do you have a hard time accepting compliments or gifts from others? Determine if you have feelings caused by codependency.
Feelings of emptiness Low self-esteem Confusion about your personal needs, goals, and feelings . Know if you are in a relationship that codependency can affect.
Traditionally, codependency was limited to romantic relationships. However, despite this common misconception, you can suffer from codependency in any type of relationship. This includes familial and platonic relationships in addition to romantic ones. Since it is passed down through families, there may be an instance where your entire familial unit exists or did exist in a codependent state, where all the needs of the family unit are put aside for the well-being of one member of the family.
Determine if your partner fits the other role in a codependent relationship. There are two categories of people in a codependent relationship. Your role as the codependent How do you know if you are codependent is known as the caretaker, while the other individual in the relationship, who would be your partner or loved one, is known as the taker. The takers typically have an excessive need for control of the attention, love, sexual relations, and approval they get and give.
They will often get these things through expressions of violence, blame, How do you know if you are codependent, irritation, criticism, neediness, righteousness, incessant talking, invasive touching, or emotional drama. The taker individuals will often express these behaviors outside of the codependent relationship, which will affect their children, work relationships, and familial relationships.
Recognize if your child is also codependent. Codependency can start during childhood, so you might need to look for codependent behaviors in your children. This is especially true if you find that you are codependent yourself. Children will often exhibit similar behaviors as adults, but they may be more subtle because they are still learning the behaviors. Common symptoms of codependent children include: Determine if your family has a history of codependency.
Codependent behaviors are often passed down through families. This means that somewhere in your past, you were either witness to or part of a codependent relationship. Through these situations, you were taught that it was wrong to express any needs, wants, or emotions.
You may have spent portions of your childhood being called upon to meet the needs of others, which taught you as a child to suppress personal emotional and physical needs as you developed in favor of taking care of a family member.
When you left this How do you know if you are codependent environment, you may have continued this pattern within your own romantic and other relationships, which may then get passed on to your children. Consider if you have a history of abuse.
Another common situation that leads to How do you know if you are codependent is a history of abuse. In these situations, if you have been abused, you may become codependent as a way to deal with the trauma of the situation.
This abuse may have happened during your childhood and continued without intervention from your family. This can also happen in codependent familial relationships. This can be emotional, physical, or sexual abuse.
Recognize common situations that cause codependent relationships.
Although codependency issues can occur in any type of relationship or with any person, there are certain types of people that encourage codependent relationships. Codependent relationships often develop between you and a person who needs looking after or taken care of. These types of people include: Those suffering from addiction Individuals with mental health disorders People with chronic illness . Look for divorce in your past.
Another past experience that may lead to codependency is divorce. In situations with divorce, an opportunity may arise when an eldest child has to step into a parental role to pick up the slack for the absentee parent. In these cases, the parenting of the child may produce behaviors of codependency. This leads to the repression of emotions and can lead to codependency. Discover the root of your codependency. If you find How do you know if you are codependent are codependent, you should see a mental health professional to help determine the root of your condition.
Since codependency is often related to childhood dysfunction, you will work with a therapist, psychiatrist, psychologist, or other mental health professional to dig into your past to determine the cause.
From there, the mental health professional How do you know if you are codependent help you work through these issues in order to heal your condition. Education about the condition and how it affects you and your relationships  Experiential group therapy, which uses movements, actions, and activities to work through your condition with therapy activities such as equine therapy, music therapy, and expressive arts therapy  Individual and group talk therapy, which focuses on discussing and talking through your issues and experiences.
Learn to focus on yourself. Codependent people often forget who they are and what their own wants, needs, and desires are.