Updated: Jan 4
This is a summation from a topic meeting from a Friday CoDA Next Step Meeting that I felt was worthy to blog about....
Thankfully in CoDA, we have a foundation that is solid in which to build new healthier lives and relationships. It is also healthy to look for solid advice from professionals that understand the dynamics of codependency. I shared this article as a topic for our Friday Night Next Step CoDA Meeting and it was a great success. Here are the main points and our take away from the article and from our forum style discussions:
#1 KNOW YOUR CODEPENDENT BEHAVIOR
"Codependency is a two-sided coin of “give” and “take.”"
In codependent relationships we normally have the "taker" and the "giver", but we as codependents also can be both as well...each relationship is unique and sometimes the partner we are with will either naturally bring out one or the other. We discuss in our groups how different codependent traits are yet, all fall under the umbrella term. This is where its important to see the correlation of the differences in codependent behavior, the intent! If we are doing something (from behaving or not behaving, withdrawing, running way, etc.) in order to manipulate an outcome (trying to keep a lover, to keep someone happy so they aren't mad at you, etc.) we are engaging in codependent behavior. Determine what your patterns and characteristics are, we have our CoDA program and doing the steps will help you find your specific traits which will likely not be like others and that is okay. It won't take long to find a coda friend that shares your traits but I find, many are either the givers or the givers that are really takers...ask me about that later!
#2 Figure out where your relationship expectations are coming from
“Until we can detangle these emotions for ourselves, it will be difficult to grow out of a codependent cycle.”
In CoDA, we address our family of origin issues because codependency is a compulsive behavior that is born out of dysfunctional family systems (regardless the level of severity of the dysfunction...meaning nearly ALL humans have learned some sort of codependent behavior. When you start to work your steps, the patterns of behavior will be easier to identify in step four. This is when we do our fearless moral inventory, and it is a GIFT. Yes, I will say that again, it is a gift. What??? The gift from "objectively" reviewing the old patterns and where, and with whom they started with are the puzzle pieces we have needed to formally disprove that false belief of who we are. We are not children needing to earn the attention and love of our parents or caregivers, we are adults that have the right to shine light on what we took on as "who we are supposed to be" and replace it with "who we ARE". This is how WE correct ourselves...this is why we call it, reparenting ourselves. This is the first step, and the process is ongoing...but this is the start of the important work.