codependent couple

Codependent Relationship? Tips for Breaking Free

Codependency is usually rooted in childhood. Often, the child grows up in a home where their emotions are ignored or punished, resulting in emotional neglect. This neglect can lead to low self-esteem and shame. Eventually, the child may grow up to “depend” on others to validate their self worth

A codependent has an exhausting lifestyle. Instead of living for themselves, they deny their own desires and emotions to get approval from others. And unfortunately, codependency often goes hand-in-hand with addiction. Without realizing it, a parent or spouse may enable their loved one because they get to be the “caretaker” and feel needed. 

How to Tell if You’re Codependent

It’s important to know that caretakers are not to blame for their loved one’s addiction. However, they must be aware of their behaviors so that they can help their loved one without hurting them. By changing things in the home, the addict may finally choose to seek addiction treatment in Agoura Hills. 

Here are some of the signs of being codependent:

  • Being drawn to people who need pity and rescue
  • Feeling responsible for the actions or happiness of others
  • Doing more in a relationship to keep it together 
  • Worrying about being abandoned or alone
  • Needing constant approval from others 
  • Difficulty adjusting to change 
  • Trouble making decisions

Tips for Healing from Codependency

While change doesn’t happen overnight, you can heal from codependency over time. This is not selfish – you need to heal yourself first. The hope is that in changing the home environment, your loved one will have a reason to seek drug rehab in Agoura Hills. If you keep making excuses for your family member and bailing them out of trouble, they won’t have a reason to change. 

To heal from codependency, here are some steps you’ll need to take: 

  • Start being honest with yourself. Doing things you don’t want to do wastes your time and energy and can cause you to be resentful. YOU get to decide what you want to spend your time on. 
  • Establish boundaries. People who are codependent struggle with boundaries and often feel guilty when they don’t do the things people want. But you need boundaries to show others what is okay and what isn’t. 
  • Stop negative thinking. When you start thinking negative thoughts, stop yourself and replace them with positive affirmations. You can also meditate, do light stretching or write in a journal when you’re feeling negative. 
  • Don’t take things personally. It’s important to accept things as they are. What others choose to say and do is not your fault. 
  • Take breaks. There’s nothing wrong with taking breaks. Spend time alone, go out with friends or participate in your favorite hobby. You are a person with your own unique interests and passions. 
  • Seek counseling. Go to therapy with your loved one or by yourself. Talking to an unbiased third party can help you identify harmful behaviors and replace them with healthier ones. 

Start a Family-Based Recovery Program Today 

When people break free of codependency, they often feel like they are being unfair and selfish to their loved one. But this is not the case. In a healthy relationship, both parties have their own identities and bring unique assets to the table. This is what healthy relationships are made of. 

Awakenings Treatment Center offers a Family Therapy Program that works with the families of our clients. Our therapists are well-trained to identify codependent behaviors and help family members work through them for a more stable and constructive home life. Contact us today to learn more about our family-based treatment programs.