Codependent relationships exist when someone influential in your life encourages self-destructive behavior. When you are battling an addiction, this is the last kind of person you want in your life. You want to sever ties with this person (or persons) and the behavior they encourage. At Solution Based Treatment, we work with all of our clients to create an individualized addiction treatment plan of treatment, including how to recognize and/or avoid codependent relationships to remove this destructive element from their lives so they can reach their end goal recovery.
Signs of Codependency
Codependency makes someone struggling with addiction wholly reliant on someone else to define their own mental and physical well-being. There are a number of things that can be red flags to you or a loved one, indicating that you have fallen into a fully codependent relationship. These include:
- Abandonment issues- It’s common to be in a codependent relationship because you fear being abandoned. It’s not necessarily that the person is the right friend for the right reasons; they are just a person who shows up, even if for the wrong reasons. You probably do everything you can to please this person so that they stick around, whether these are good choices or not.
- Obsessive/Compulsiveness – If you truly feel like you can’t live without this person, even though it’s a destructive relationship, then that’s a big sign of codependency. You may become obsessed with being with this person to the point that you lie, hide your true feelings, and do whatever they ask of you, for better or for worse.
- No Support – When you don’t have a solid support network, then your reliance on this one singular person is a sure sign of codependency. Not having a large group of friends that you are comfortable being around leaves you without a lot of people to rely on.
- Avoidance – Codependent people are so focused on that one person that they don’t make time to see or spend time with other key people in their life.
- Poor self-esteem – It can be draining working so hard to do everything for another person just so they stay in your life. You can start to doubt your own decisions, think poorly of yourself, and start to believe the negative things that the other person convinces you of. These signs of a codependent relationship wreaking havoc on your sense of self can have lasting effects long after the relationship ends.
You have to decide whether this is a relationship you want to try and save. It’s a question of whether the relationship is safe for you and whether the codependency and self-destructive behavior can be removed from the relationship or not. The first step is having both people involved recognize and acknowledge the codependency and the negative effect of the behavior. Your priority is taking care of yourself. By focusing on your own needs and building your confidence, you will be able to exist and flourish without needing the other person. Your relationship can continue in a much healthier way by removing the negative elements – like drugs and alcohol – and building a relationship based on healthier habits.
SBT Can Help
Codependency can be extremely overwhelming. But addiction and self-destructive behavior can be even more taxing. When you put your trust in someone and realize they do not have your best interest in mind, it can crush you and leave you at a loss for where to turn. However, recognizing the signs of codependency, taking action, and getting treatment will all help.