|Codependency is a term used to describe a kind of addiction, a relationship addiction. A person is said to
be suffering from codependency when they exhibit caring for a loved one who is suffering from a real
addiction to drugs or alcohol. The behavior of the caring individual is said to hinder recovery of the real
addict by enabling the addict to continue the addiction.
Codependency makes it seem as if all caring for addicts is pathological.
What are some of the symptoms?
avoidance of feelings
hyper vigilance (a heightened awareness for potential threat/danger)
People with co-dependency may....have trouble saying no, have trouble asking for help, tailor their
actions and conversation around getting attention and approval from others, feel inferior to others/hold a
lot of self-doubt, have high expectations from others, most especially from significant others, and usually
get highly angry or irritated when they don't meet those expectations, focus a lot of mental time and
attention on other people, especially significant others, have difficulty maintaining a stable relationship with
a partner, be in and out of highly volatile (big ups and downs) relationships. They may be uncomfortable
when not in a relationship, be frequently depressed, usually related to stress. Types of enabling behavior
- Making excuses for the addict(I'll call your boss to tell him that you are sick again today.)
- Giving the addict a long string of "last chances"- Bailing them out of jail(again)
- Loaning them money(again)
ATTENTION: Enabling an addict does not make addiction the co-dependents Fault remember: Negative
consequences are what helps the addict to achieve recovery! The loving thing to do may be letting them
A love-hate relationship is a personal relationship between humans, or figuratively between a human and
an inanimate object, like a computer, involving simultaneously or alternatively emotions of love and
enmity. This relationship may, or may not be of a romantic nature. The term comes from the way one may
love the object/person one moment, and yet the next moment feel great rage or hatred for it. For example
a computer may impress a user with amazing video game graphics one moment, yet the next moment it
crashes at a key point during the game. It often occurs when people have completely lost the intimacy
within a loving relationship, yet still retain some passion for, or perhaps some commitment to, each other.
An addiction is also a kind of love-hate relationship.
|The progression of
of an alcoholic or addict
|The Twelve Steps of Co-Dependents
1. We admitted we were powerless over others - that our lives had become
2. Came to believe that a power greater than ourselves could restore us to
3. Made a decision to turn our will and lives over to the care of God as we
4. Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.
5. Admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being, the exact nature
of our wrongs.
6. Were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character.
7. Humbly asked God to remove our shortcomings.
8. Made a list of all persons we had harmed and became willing to make
amends to them all.
9. Made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so
would injure them or others.
10. Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong, promptly
11.Sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with
God as we understood God, praying only for knowledge of God's will for us
and the power to carry that out.
12.Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we tried to
carry this message to other codependents, and to practice these principles in
all our affairs.
The Twelve Steps are re-printed with the permission of Co-Dependents Anonymous Inc.
For more information and meeting locations go to;