Codependency is a controversial concept for a dysfunctional helping relationship where one person supports or enables another person’s addiction, poor mental health, immaturity, irresponsibility, or under-achievement.
Are you Codependent in your Marriage?
Below are some of the symptoms of codependency in marriage and relationships:
Symptoms of a Codependent Relationship
- Having difficulty making decisions in a relationship
- Having difficulty identifying your feelings
- Having difficulty communicating in a relationship
- Valuing the approval of others more than valuing yourself
- Lacking trust in yourself and having poor self-esteem
- Having fears of abandonment or an obsessive need for approval
- Having an unhealthy dependence on relationships, even at your own cost
- Having an exaggerated sense of responsibility for the actions of others
But before you throw in the towel and get wrapped up in labeling yourself or your spouse, know that it is rare for there to be only one dysfunctional person in a relationship. Whether either partner has a substance abuse, addiction, or other problem, it is possible to unknowingly support this toxic behavior.
What we believe about Codependency in Marriage
In Imago Therapy, we believe that we marry the very person we need in order to grow and heal our unmet childhood needs. This means there is inevitable conflict along the way. With that said, instead of labeling whether or not you are codependent, begin to focus on what you can do to get safe in the relationship and create a safe space for your partner.
Advice for Partners in a Codependent Relationship
Learn how to ask for what you need and establish healthy boundaries. Your relationship is not doomed. You may be exactly where you need to be to grow as long as your partner is willing to go through the process together with you.
If you think you have a problem with codependency and you’d like to be able to enjoy a relationship that feels equal and supportive, contact us using the form below: