What Codependence Looks Like

Another excerpt from one of our chapters. Does this look familiar???

I learned a new word—I’d heard about Codependence before but never stopped to think that I might need to better acquaint myself with its meaning. Until now.

Pat’s definition went something like this: You put your own needs on the back burner and busy yourself taking care of someone else’s. The healthy version of helping someone looks like a simple gesture of kindness, say, dropping off homemade soup for a friend who’s sick with the flu.

When Codependence enters the picture, things get wonky; you move in with that friend, stock her freezer with homemade casseroles, clean her shower grout with a Q-tip, then wash and iron all of her family’s laundry. The thank-you’s are intoxicating. Your own needs pale in comparison. A week or so isn’t enough. Oh no. You keep this going until you’ve lost your job, your car’s been repossessed, and your house is in foreclosure.

Because, you rationalize, you’re such a giver.