Toxic Love-Codependent to the Roots - Stylfemina

Toxic Love-Codependent to the Roots

Every one of us have faced difficulties in life, there are some good days and bad days. Especially when it comes to love relationship we deal with a lot of problems i.e. physically, mentally, socially and spiritually. In my practice I have dealt with a lot of relationship problems which have been cause of other mental health problems i.e. depression, anxiety, mood disorders, personality disorders and drug/ substance addiction disorders. Codependency is a very serious condition that can affect you physically and mentally.

What is Codependency?

Codependency is excessive emotional and physical reliance on your partner, codependents can be addicted to a relationships in a same way drug addict use drug to get fix or high. A person in codependent relation feels that they don’t have meaning or self-worth in and of themselves, and are worthwhile only in relation to someone else. Codependency is so deep rooted in our society that it is considered normal now to not to have a life of your own and getting ill in process of serving others. Our culture encourages codependent behaviors by reinforcing unhealthy values i.e. materialism, perfection, selflessness, separation of feelings from rational thoughts, validation, enabling and pleasing people.

Symptoms that you are in codependent relation

  • Clinging relations: each person in a codependent relationship often cannot survive without the other person. They think their life will be over if this relationship ends so they accept all the disrespect and abuse from their partner.
  • Lack of boundaries: codependent don’t recognize themselves as a separate individual with separate emotions and feelings, in short they don’t know where they end and the other begins. They believe that what their partner is feeling or saying or doing is what they are also going through. They start building life around their partner instead of having their own life.
  • Impression management: codependents believe that they can control their impression in other person mind, they are always pleasing people and trying to stay in other people good books.
  • Mistrust of perception: codependents dismiss their perception and knowledge and will validate other people perception for themselves, even they are on the right.
  • Low self-esteem: codependents have low self-esteem and usually adopt to the caretaking role. They take care of their partner as their child and neglect themselves, their condition starts to deteriorate in order to take care of their partner.
  • Addictions: codependent develop dependency on other things such as over eating, hoarding, excessively working or even chemical addiction.
  • Feelings: codependents get so busy taking care of other people expectations that they lose touch of their own feelings.

How to recover from Codependency?

Recovery from codependency can be achieved through professional treatment from a clinical psychologists. Like me and my team of Cleansing Conversations have been working on it for quite a time now as this concept is still very unknown to people. We psycho-educate the codependent that they need proper treatment individually not just in relation to your partner. First you have to recover yourself then you can recover your relationship from toxicity.

In initial stage of therapy a codependent completely denies of having any serious problems in their relation and also that they have no problems of them individually. But gradually in process of therapy they start to accept their unhealthy behaviors and take responsibility of them, they accept that they are codependent and that their life have become unmanageable. Through psychological techniques and behavioral therapy they start to know that they don’t have control over their partner life and that successful relationships allow each person in a relation to be independent. By the end of therapy they also develop a sense of self-worth.

In the therapy process codependent are taught some self-care steps to aid their recovery i.e. detachment, removing the victim image, achieving independence, building your own life, accepting reality and setting goals.

To recover and become healthy, the codependent person must shift from an external focus to internal focus (feelings, needs, goals and achievements) the codependent learns that healthy behavior can be achieved through the process of learning, accepting, and trusting themselves as an individual and not by becoming dependent on other people or things.


About the Author

CO-Founder and Clinical Psychologist Ms. Zahra Kaneez


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