How often do we get caught up - in the trap of doing for others - at the expense of ourselves? Certainly, for many of us, more than we care to admit. But, do we realize there is a term, a word for this re-occurring, painful behavior and the term is Co-dependency? Co-dependency is the disease to please, not the desire to love, because Co-dependency is about fear and self, not love and others. Let me explain why.
Co-dependency , or the disease to please, literally is a prison of our own making, a prison we are stuck in, fueled by our fears of other people - What they may think, what they may say, how they may feel if we told them our truth, if we said NO, if we turned them down and more. So, we become obsessed with how they may feel or will act instead of simply being true to ourselves. This is not loving to anyone. Certainly not to ourselves and surely not to them.
Melanie Beattie, the guru of Co-dependency describes it this way: Co-dependency is letting another persons behavior affect us to the point that we become obsessed with their behavior and controlling that or them. Now, I know, I hear you already... you may be thinking I am not trying to control anyone. I get it. I really do. But when you dig down deep, if you are really honest with yourself, you will realize you actually are. You are trying to prevent them from behaving a certain way towards or with you. You are trying to avoid their anger and resentment, their upset and rejection, their addiction and accusations and more.
But the truth of the matter is YOU CAN'T. You can't make anyone do anything. Co-dependence is a lie. If I just do this, he will love me, If I just say it that way, she won't be mad at me, if I just set up this boundary, they won't use me and on and on.
But, here's the hope, there is a healthy piece to the Co-dependent mind and that is anticipation. It is healthy to anticipate what may happen and plan accordingly. It is healthy to hope for the best, yet, plan for the worst. It is NOT healthy to live obsessed with what may happen or always feel the need to attempt to control another's actions. That is not freedom, that is fear and fear is not love.
But there is good news. You can love both yourself and the other person. You can learn to keep the healthy part of co-dependence and to overcome the unhealthy parts. And it starts with boundaries. Boundaries help you feel safe. If any of this resonates with you, feel free to hop over to our sister web-site www.michellerenehammer.com and grab a copy of the free E-book 'Say NO With Ease Using These Five Keys' and begin your journey to healing today