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Author Topic: Codependency Guilt  (Read 1484 times)
laelle
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« on: April 27, 2013, 04:58:12 PM »

I was going through some of the info on the website and I came across this article https://bpdfamily.com/content/codependency-codependent-relationships

My heart dropped when I read it and I began to truly get what codependency is.  I feel terrible guilt.  I never thought I was above my ex, but I did feel more valuable to him

the more I helped. I thought he wouldnt leave me if I made him happy. I began to feel bitter at the fact that I gave and got back little.  Did I really get back little or did I just want to see it that way to keep myself a victim?  I was doing to him what my ex husband was doing to me.

My COD caused him to focus more on his problems as well, which I, in the end, blamed him for.  I'm not saying that he wasnt a BPD, because he soo was, and im not saying that he was not verbally abusive, but wasnt what I was doing abusive too?  At the end of the relationship I was trying to talk to him about this, I just didnt know it had a name.  I didnt want to save him anymore.  I didnt want to be the one to hold his head above water, I wanted to be the one who could buy us a pair of jet ski's to enjoy.  Anyway, I feel really rotten as I feel in someway I judged him unfairly.

any advice or opinion on this would be greatly appreciated.

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« Reply #1 on: April 27, 2013, 05:25:52 PM »

I was going through some of the info on the website and I came across this article https://bpdfamily.com/content/codependency-codependent-relationships

My heart dropped when I read it and I began to truly get what codependency is.  I feel terrible guilt.  I never thought I was above my ex, but I did feel more valuable to him

the more I helped. I thought he wouldnt leave me if I made him happy. I began to feel bitter at the fact that I gave and got back little.  Did I really get back little or did I just want to see it that way to keep myself a victim?  I was doing to him what my ex husband was doing to me.

My COD caused him to focus more on his problems as well, which I, in the end, blamed him for.  I'm not saying that he wasnt a BPD, because he soo was, and im not saying that he was not verbally abusive, but wasnt what I was doing abusive too?  At the end of the relationship I was trying to talk to him about this, I just didnt know it had a name.  I didnt want to save him anymore.  I didnt want to be the one to hold his head above water, I wanted to be the one who could buy us a pair of jet ski's to enjoy.  Anyway, I feel really rotten as I feel in someway I judged him unfairly.

any advice or opinion on this would be greatly appreciated.

dunno.

mho -- the article linked was, well . . . mostly just sort of goofy.

Here is how I explain it to the kids . . .

We stand on one leg. Wave our arms. Point down at our leg and we yell -- Independent!

Then we stand on the other leg. Wave our arms. Point down at our leg and we yell -- Independent!

Then we jump up and down, jog in place, and dance around. Point down at both our legs and we yell -- Inter-dependent! Working Together!

THEN. We stand, cross our legs left and right, all tangled together. Wave our arms and fall down -- yelling Co-Dependent!

We all get up laughing.

Even the 5 year old understands this.

Can't be interdependent if you (BOTH) cannot be independent, first.

=================

Real deal -- most addicts and mentally ill (many BPD are BOTH) are Users.

Co-des by and large are looking for love -- To Love and To Be Loved.

Just VERY POOR targeting skills in that regard.  A User can neither really Love nor Be Loved.

So the more the Co-de tries to force their form of Love upon the User (and the User takes and takes), but the Co-de gets none in return.  The Co-de gets more and more depleted and despairs and starts to pull back and the User believes they deserve the fix the Co-de has reduced the supply of. 

Abandonment in BPD terms.  Then the blow-up.

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laelle
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« Reply #2 on: April 27, 2013, 05:35:22 PM »

Thank you Somewhere,

What your saying makes lots of sense and really hits home for me.  The article seemed a little harsh as I have never heard anyone on these forums refer to a COD in that way.

It hurt me deeply.  I know im not perfect, but never wanted anyone to feel beholden to me.  I just wanted to make someone life a little bit brighter.  It made me feel good when I made someone else

feel good.

You just saved me a couple hundred hours of therapy  Smiling (click to insert in post)



Copy and pasting this one to my monitor.
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arabella
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« Reply #3 on: April 27, 2013, 05:53:03 PM »

I don't agree with the article. It even points out that it doesn't agree with experts on codependency!

Excerpt
To contradict a lot of codependent books I am going to go out on a limb here... .  

Excerpt
Although the experts seem to claim... .  actually... .  

The side-notes that Skip posted were more helpful. Skips note are identical to literature given out by CoDA but the article doesn't describe their philosophy at all (to my mind anyway). I think the article author got NPD and codependency mixed up and mashed them together.
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maria1
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« Reply #4 on: April 27, 2013, 05:57:17 PM »

Laelle

I love these boards but not in their entirety. There are articles I disagree with and this is one. I do think there are some codependents out there like this but they are at the extreme end of the spectrum, I have met a few. It is not denial that causes me not to see those traits in me or in you but I do see them in some people on these boards. And I do see some of my behaviour here and there.

I think this article serves to turn people away from recognising their CD traits at an earlier point in their recovery. I do not know why it is on here. I find it crass and incredibly black and white, along with the one about the BPD love relationship.

It isn't you Laelle.  
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Hurt llama
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« Reply #5 on: April 27, 2013, 11:42:46 PM »

I just read the posted link and while I have discovered codependency issues I clearly had with my ex, that article was (IMO) really dumbed down and very over stated. Terrible article.

To me personally, while I think I have clearly owned up to my responsibility in my relationship, it's a fine line and as discussed in Leaving, where someone posted if 'apologizing' to your BPD partner is a good idea, I learned the hard way that it was handing over ammunition to a child with a gun. Bad idea.

You know I really enjoy your posts and PM's. You have really helped me. I hope it doesn't upset me to mention that I had to read a post you made recently in which you mentioned your ex spit in your face? I say it because to me, I have my own 'spit in the face' example such as her infidelity and twisting the facts so much, I was truly not sure if we were in an exclusive arrangement... .  she confused me so much I was spinning... .  Talking about "Two truths" and "Why is it ok for a Man to do it but not a woman?" just so much smoke, deflections and well for lack of a better word, "insanity'.

I'm not in an apologetic mood these days. I'm also not walking around cursing her under my breath as I did. My eye is on the prize of indifference or better said, detachment.

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laelle
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« Reply #6 on: April 28, 2013, 12:54:29 AM »

Aww, thank you guys... .  Thats why I love you all so much.  

I question myself alot, constantly keeping myself in check as to whether I am a good person or not. I know it is self criticism and that people dont really see me that way.  Except my ex.  

When I talk to my T and I say things like "I'm abnormal", she will say.  "The way that you are feeling is completely normal for someone who has grown up with the dynamics that you had in your life."

There is nothing "abnormal" about it.  "There is some deep down twisted thinking that makes you feel bad about yourself, but it is "twisted thinking" meaning its just not true."

"You are a great person Laelle"  "You just have to believe that fact."  We are going to work on removing that twisted thinking so I can believe it.  Smiling (click to insert in post)

Arabella-    -  Yeah, lets just believe she is the lone wolf in the COD territory.  I dont like her and I never met her.  Smiling (click to insert in post)  Look, I made her disappear from my thoughts... .  tada  Smiling (click to insert in post)

Maria-   - I guess its just that this is the first time that I have gotten info here that fed my worst fears.  That I am a selfish person.  (My mom put this thought there, while my ex turned the knife)  Thank you for supporting me on this.   We all can be selfish at times, but our existence is not a selfish one.

Hurt  llama -  my dear, kind Hurt llama,  thank you.  You are right.  The way we acted in our relationships was reactionary to what was going on in them.  Most of the time it was a bit of crazy making, combined with him being a needy, manipulative ass.  There were good times, but I have my doubts if they werent simply there to keep me feeding him emotionally and financially.

Thinking back last nite, I really cant remember one time that he did something just for me.  If he was giving me support, he was usually in the process of asking for some of his own.

I ask for anything, I get spat in the face and abandoned.  Your right Hurt, they were magicians, and masters of their own art.  Nothing is as it appeared.  Only enough was real to keep you

believing the rest was real.

That being said... .  My BPD rant  Smiling (click to insert in post)... .  I do have empathy and kind feelings for my ex.  I do realize that he is sick and that he did try to fight those urges to protect himself using his own faulty defense mechanisms. He has read books about BPD, and he use to post regularly on a BPD website.  He tried.  Kudos for that.

Now to the important question... .  Do I REALLY have kind feelings for him, or it that coming from my need to be a Good person.    

Love you guys  



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Hurt llama
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« Reply #7 on: April 28, 2013, 03:33:29 AM »

Now to the important question... .  Do I REALLY have kind feelings for him, or it that coming from my need to be a Good person.    

You are obviously a kind, sensitive, caring, giving good person. So am I , so probably are most of us.

These traits also including a higher degree than average or even 'normal' empathy are wonderful things about us. But as is typical I see strengths also being weakness and even weakness as being a strength. In our case we probably gave to much of self, not out of 'bad' or 'manipulative' reasons or even 'co dependency'. I believe that while some of us are co dependent or have tendencies, there is something else going on too.

It's the fact that we were with MENTALLY ILL people. That matters. Yes, some or maybe even most people might have drawn stronger more clear boundaries but well, they wouldn't have worked anyway. They really wouldn't. Because the BPD person or the Non would call it quits fast and each would move on.

But not us. We 'doubled down', we rose to the 'challenge', we weren't going to 'lose', we might use all of our ability, our intelligence, our knowledge to try to 'teach' or educate or enlighten or lead by example or try any and every thing we could do to make a healthy relationship out of an IMPOSSIBLE relationship. A relationship that seemed to make some sort of sense but only when you were deep inside... .  and before you knew it, you were sucked into and an equal part of Crazy Land. You know., the roller coaster that made you sick and when it stops you need and want to get back on for more.

My thesis at the moment and yes, it's self serving for where I am in my process but to me it seems the focus at this point for some of us, is MUCH better served on not apologising, not feeling so badly about our part (even if we did bad things and I have) but on trying to almost re-experience in memories certain events but with the new 'lense' we have to see it all a bit differently and to hear or feel the vibration that was always present in good times and bad contributing to an almost constant state of instability or not feeling safe and to take the inventory in THAT light, not in the light necessarily of this so called 'equal' part of the dysfunction.

Sure we held our part in the equation but sorry in my opinion it's a different part to be the one with the gun being point at as opposed to the child waving the gun around.

Sorry for the long speech... . This is building up for my own process, some of it you may or may not relate to but take a leap of faith and believe you are good enough and a good person and stop worry about your ex who spat in your face when you disagreed. Get angry sometimes. Anger is underrated at times.

In the end, I am certain we will not be angry, we won't have this idealistic love (as they did for us), we won't have the anger either. We will have achieved the detachment we need to get the lives that we deserve.

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maria1
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« Reply #8 on: April 28, 2013, 04:23:11 AM »

Laelle

That article is nasty. It takes the negative sides of codependency and twists. It triggered you because it takes the caring part if you and turns it into a negative. That's what your mother did. It's what my father did to me when he told me 'you are over sensitive' if I ever expressed any feelings.

Please please please don't let that article reinforce that voice.

It's that twisting voice that is telling you you don't really care about your ex, you just want to be seen to care. IT ISN'T TRUE.



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« Reply #9 on: April 28, 2013, 09:45:35 AM »

Laelle, I read this article recently too and felt the same way.  Did some soul searching and thought that something wasn't quite right and went back and read it again.  Ohhhh, she said that she disagrees with the experts.  Well, that explains it! 

I think most of us want to be helpful to be helpful, not to puff ourselves up.  The problem is that sometimes being helpful is just the opposite and what is needed instead is tough love. 

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Somewhere
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« Reply #10 on: April 28, 2013, 10:58:59 AM »

Like any other human condition, there is a wide range.

Most of *us* are repentant from being Co-de, if at all.

Folks that are really (really, really) into their Co-de-ness can get quite extreme, and often do resist any outside pressure or even attempts to get them to stop.

Take my MIL, for instance . . .  (Please!)  [old vaudeville comedy routine, there Smiling (click to insert in post) ]

Completely raging Co-de.

Buys and carries her hubby (now with a stroke) cigarettes.  He had quit after having the stroke.

Tries to cloth me, cannot not try to fight over the tab at a restaurant, I cannot even tell her what I am getting Mrs. Somewhere or the kids for Christmas or a birthday -- or else she will try to run out and get it first.   on and on.

But after Mrs. Somewhere came back from rehab (eating disorder and hyperactive exercise), MIL's Co-De kicked into High Gear.  Decided that Mrs. Somewhere needed a job (yeah, probably true, but she would not show up for the one she had).  MIL wrote her three different resumes, seven different cover letters, filling out 10 page forms, and searched 30 to 50 jobs a day -- All by MIL, while Mrs. sat on her butt, making up bytch stories, lies, and gossip.

Got so crazy at the mid point that MIL was sending exercise clothes for karate class teaching jobs to Mrs. Somewhere (with exercise bulimia).  Fortunately the T's got involved and No-Go'ed that.  When MIL tried to drag me in deeper, I just rolled my eyes and said, "Have Fun."  She started screaming about how much she, "Hates My Alanon."  THAT was when I knew I was getting better.

But one night MIL thought she was having a heart attack, (All drama, all the time), and I was the only one to stop in and check on her.   Mrs. Somewhere and her NPD sister had not returned calls.  MIL was mostly upset at all she does for other people and no one really cares about her.  Yep.  The classic Co-De storyline.

So yeah, just like Bad Co-de stories say -- Real Co-des are all about the Co-de. 

Just like the BPD is Always All About the BPD. 
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Somewhere
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« Reply #11 on: April 28, 2013, 11:02:14 AM »

And being more practical in all this . . .

Suppose we could ask the Board Admin to dump that article and put something of quality in its place.
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arabella
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« Reply #12 on: April 28, 2013, 11:45:02 AM »

Now to the important question... .  Do I REALLY have kind feelings for him, or it that coming from my need to be a Good person.

Your need/want to be a good person is what makes you a good person. The attempt to show kindness to those who have wronged us makes us good - not codependent. Now, if you obsess over that or go overboard, or you want recognition for it... .  that's maybe a problem. But if you are doing it because you realize that kindness is healthier than holding on to hate, and you want to be healthy - that's emotional maturity. I think we should all strive to be good people, but for ourselves, not to look good to others. It would be a sad world if everyone stopped trying to be good and kind.
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« Reply #13 on: April 28, 2013, 01:06:31 PM »

"I think most of us want to be helpful to be helpful, not to puff ourselves up."  From Mara2

yI feel like there is more to this.  That we want to be helpful to survive emotionally.  Taught that we get love by being helpful.  Taught that is about our only value.  So when someone says, YOU are NOT helpful, it is devastating (BPD devalue).

Addicted to being helpful to feel good.  Healing to the point where if someone says YOU are NOT helpful, we go Okie doke.  I'm still the same cute little cuttlefish.

The BPD worrying about my every need, that was meth cocaine when being idealized.  It was finally, someone is addressing my needs without me having to articulate what they were, like I had a clue what they were.  I was trained to not have needs.

I am skilled at being helpful.  I suck at standing up for myself and expressing my needs.  And figuring out what my needs are is tricky too!
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Hurt llama
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« Reply #14 on: April 28, 2013, 01:07:53 PM »

Now to the important question... .  Do I REALLY have kind feelings for him, or it that coming from my need to be a Good person.

Your need/want to be a good person is what makes you a good person. The attempt to show kindness to those who have wronged us makes us good - not codependent. Now, if you obsess over that or go overboard, or you want recognition for it... .  that's maybe a problem. But if you are doing it because you realize that kindness is healthier than holding on to hate, and you want to be healthy - that's emotional maturity. I think we should all strive to be good people, but for ourselves, not to look good to others. It would be a sad world if everyone stopped trying to be good and kind.

That's such a good way of thinking about it. well said. Smiling (click to insert in post)
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laelle
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« Reply #15 on: April 28, 2013, 01:56:51 PM »

I think this is such a worthy conversation, and I promise I will reply more to it soon.  Its been a worrisome day and I would really like to reply to it when my thoughts

can follow what everyone is saying.  In other words, my brain is rather squishy today.  Smiling (click to insert in post)  and im reading but cant understand what im reading.  Smiling (click to insert in post)

I do good things for two reasons... .  

1. to make someones day a little bit brighter.  Help to give hope where there is none.  

2. because it makes me feel good to make someones day a little bit brighter.

I dont know whether that is right or wrong, its just the way I am.  I get smacked in the jaw quite a bit with this attitude, and im making some changes

to protect my face a little better.

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Hurt llama
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« Reply #16 on: April 28, 2013, 03:15:54 PM »

Laelle,

You're doing great.

I'll share that while 'anger' is certainly not a 'goal' sometimes anger is a motivator, that's why it exists. To protect us at the most base levels.

Sometimes when we intellectualize and make allowances or excuses to 'explain' or 'allow' bad treatment to continue we are denying 'proper' anger.

Why we do this, is for another thread but in my experience it seems like what some of us do.

In my own case, there would be times that I would be talking to my ex over the phone (she's 3k miles away) and when I would stand up and outline my boundaries, she might pull away, get cold and hang up) . Afterwards I would have tremendous anxiety of the lost connection, the drug was being pulled away. It's a pathetic feeling that I imagine most of us feel or have felt.

I am writing this as I guess maybe I am projecting, in fact, I certainly am! But when I read about your ex and certain things he did, my blood runs ice cold and I imagine how strong my own boundaries are in how I would never accept such treatment and yet I have accepted mistreatment, I have thrown myself in front of the bus time and time again.

I did pull back in healthy ways, I did have a plan and I did do a healthy thing in distancing myself, calling off the engagement and many things I started to change over the years. But only very recently have i started to see the full effects that contact with my ex has been responsible or adding to an underlying issue I have carried.

By getting angry, we can identify what needs to be done easier than with compassion and need to be 'good' understanding and 'nice' people. It's much more complicated than that. We used them maybe as much as they used us.

"Angry' isn't the end goal of course. Detachment is. But intellectual thought alone can't get me there. I need to experience the full gamut of emotions and I recognize that my 'strength' of compassion and caring, in most cases are the reason I got in deep in the first place. Stay Tough. Stay Hard, Stay Strong.

I think.  
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« Reply #17 on: April 28, 2013, 04:55:11 PM »

Okay, I read the article. Not to intentionally be contrarian, I think this article has very valid points.

I believe I am a recovered codependent. I am studying the codependent people of my life to get further insight as well. I believe codependency happens with a lack of self worth. A person may not have a cohesive sense of self. The codependents that I know, including me until recently, don't have a conscious awareness of their selves and their true place in the world. So they try to gauge who they are be other peoples reactions, if good signals, this means validation. I think when a person develops a little healthy narcissim, I mean healthy, this consciousness of who you are comes into awareness. Like a map of you.

I realized that I am supposed to be a little btchy. Teach em hard, teach em good. I had no idea I was supposed to be like that. I had no sense of self identity. No cohesive google map of myself.

When you realize your worth, and how this kindness you have to give, if given to the right people, can fruitfully multiply your rewards untold numbers. But if given to a brat, it becomes a vast sink hole. And yes, a person who has invested his kindness unwisely will feel resentful and depleted. His efforts are going into a vast black hole.

So really, it's not that the kind efforts are extinguished, it's giving them in better channels, with better returns. I saw it was a misallocation of investment, and not that I am a bad person. I make better emotional investments now. I am not codependent anymore.

What do you think of this?
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« Reply #18 on: April 28, 2013, 05:29:38 PM »

I think this website is made up almost entirely of people with codependent traits. It is the codependent traits that kept us in a r/s with a pwBPD. But there is a difference in definition of codependency and that's where I'm against the article. It reminds me of a rant I read on a BPD website entitled 'I hate nons'. It doesn't get us anywhere; it moves nobody any further forward.

I have had unbearingly codependent relationships in my life. Reading that article wouldn't have helped me see that. It was usually somebody else's fault! As I've got older I've wanted to look more at me and why I keep repeating the same stuff in relationships. I got fed up of nagging, of wanting people to change, of hiding away in other people's problems, of feeling I was banging my head against a brick wall thinking he just needs to do this or that and it'll all be fine.

I got tired of being codependent without even recognising what that meant. Weirdly enough the relationship prior to BPD was the one where I saw the pattern most clearly.

What us codependents need once we recognise it is a bit of self acceptance and compassion, not a scalding like that article gives.
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« Reply #19 on: April 28, 2013, 07:24:41 PM »

I agree this board has people with codependent traits too. You know how Dave Ramsey encourages conserving  your resources? Well, maybe this board is a lot like dave Ramsey. Maybe the biggest problem we have is not throwing the louts out soon enough.

Think about it like this. How do you feel helping someone on this board vs. helping a non appreciative jerk? Much more rewarding? More payoff? I don't think the problem is helping, it is just helping the wrong people.
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« Reply #20 on: April 28, 2013, 07:43:43 PM »

OK this is hitting on an issue I have, am I truly not codependent or am I in denial. When I read the definitions of codependency they just don't feel like they fit. I mean, I really want them to, it would give me an answer as to why.

So, especially back to you Maria, what remarks on here speak to you of codependency traits. Ok as I write this I'm thinking, I tried to fix him, I guess that would be one.
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« Reply #21 on: April 28, 2013, 09:19:44 PM »



Underdeveloped self esteem (no boundaries) combined with an inappropriate caring for others (invading a boundary), and an inappropriate reliance on another's response (invading a boundary), in a negatively reinforcing loop
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« Reply #22 on: April 29, 2013, 12:15:07 AM »

This was a turning point for me:

www.mindfulconstruct.com/2010/07/09/end-a-codependent-relationship-the-healthy-way/

And defining codependency as finding happiness and fulfilment in somebody else's crap because it stopped me focusing on mine. I had a better definition but I forget it!

I didn't even try to fix my pwBPD, I'd decided no more fixing when I met him. Fixing/ changing didn't work in my relationships and I knew that. That didn't stop me spending all my time thinking/ worrying/ listening/ focusing/ dreaming/ helping/ listening/ to him.

And when I tried to pull back from doing that he hated it. He woke me in the middle of the night with texts or phone calls. That's why if I have LC i won't let him have my number. Because he can only do it by pushing the other person into codeoendency. He knows no other way. But he knows its too much.

Apologies Laelle I feel we are hijacking.

I'm in a therapy group led by a therapist who refuses to use diagnostic labels such as codependent. She asked me if I thought she had classified me as anything and I said probably that. She said she hadn't and she doesn't as she doesn't find it helpful. She prefers to focus on the issues.

My group members all drip codeoendency but in very different ways. I'm very glad we don't classify or use the word. It makes a huge difference.

Also this helped me:

www.mindfulconstruct.com/2009/02/05/what-is-codependency/

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« Reply #23 on: April 29, 2013, 01:02:00 AM »

And never forget that we loved them. It's easy to boil it all down into codependency and classification. On top of everything else is love and we loved them.
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« Reply #24 on: April 29, 2013, 09:10:38 AM »

I have read the article several times in the past; I will read again later 2 day.

I know it's not a pretty article.

What I found helpful, even in the past, was this (others may not, it's just what I found helpful).

There are a ton of writings on the CD subject. It ends up being viewed as the nice persons warm/fuzzy issue. Then the mental construct I see developing is a fierce attachment to being a nice person. Anyone presenting another side is viewed as a threat to being a nice person. I've seen nice CD folks gang together and be really, really  awful to others who even dare suggest that their belief system is faulty or not helpful to themselves or others. It's easy to argue for niceness!  When suggesting there is more to it, it's easy to look like you are against being nice.

How does one argue with niceness? In some ways it makes CD more tricky and much easier to defend psychologically, cause after all... . "we're the nice ones, the ones who love too much."

Many people say "I'm CD" with a nod and a wink... .  like it's the cute Teddy bear problem.

This article is NOT pretty. And I didn't identify with every bit of it, but, I saw myself in it enough that it was a real eye opener. And for the first time I saw it wasn't just the cute nice persons problem. I began to see the dark underbelly of Cd.

It's an ugly, unattractive article. It highlights the worst aspects of a unhealthy belief system. It's not unlike thousands of articles and posts highlighting the worst of BPD behavior, and lumping those traits all into one harsh extreme.  So, it made me also a bit more aware of how it must feel to be labeled, with something other than a nice person problem.

I found the article to be helpful because of those things. It was a wake up call to me. Not everything I do is "nice". Part of healing is accepting ourselves and others realistically and integrating all our parts, dark side included.



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Maryiscontrary
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« Reply #25 on: April 29, 2013, 10:15:52 AM »

Great vocabulary, maybe so.

I am not a nice person to a lot of behaviors. But I am a hell of a lot more principaled, and I feel a lot better for it.
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Phoenix.Rising
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« Reply #26 on: April 29, 2013, 01:25:47 PM »

A simple definition for me runs along the lines of losing or compromising myself in attempt to get in the good graces or favor of someone else.  As we know it's more complicated than this.  If I'm honest with myself, there is a payoff in there for me, that relates to my own selfishness.  So, is it that I really want to be in the good graces of the other, or is it that I don't want to look at my own problems?  The tendency is to argue for my 'giving' qualities, but I believe a lot of this to be false.  I am often not wanting to look honestly at myself.

My mother taught me well to be 'empathetic' towards her needs, that her needs were most important, and that I am a good, kind child when responding in this way.  I believe now my mom has BPD.  The start of recovery for me is recognizing what my values are.  Then, adhering to them (easier said than done).  Learning that "NO" is a complete sentence. 

I've recently found that I do have a tendency at times to feel guilt for acting in a sane, healthy way, as opposed to a codependent way.  This is how ingrained the behaviors are, feeling guilt for something good.  It is getting better, though, a little at a time.  Awareness is the beginning, then I can advance on the actual changes.
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laelle
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« Reply #27 on: April 29, 2013, 01:50:43 PM »

I have had other relationships where I was codependent.  Never tho, have I been in one where the receiving end just kept on wanting more.

I did not contribute so I could belittle him and puff myself up.  I love him.  When you love someone you support them, not break them down.

I contributed because I wanted to help him to "fix" his situation so he could take care of himself and be happy.  If he could not take care of himself, how could I ever hope that

he and I could take care of eachother.  No matter how many times I tried, it was never enough.  I would dig him out of a hole for him to turn around and jump back in it.

I dont feel bitter because I gave so much, I feel bitter because he emailed me my "f**k off letter while in the western union picking up the money I had just sent him.

Laelle... .  angry  

Maybe so, One thing that I have begun to notice about myself is that I had myself split into a good person / bad person  persona. 

Good Laelle could not do Bad Laelle things.  Both could exist and I was fine with both, but they could not share the same behavior.  I am catching myself now when I start sorting my feelings good or bad... .  to say NO... .  they are not good or bad, just my feelings.
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« Reply #28 on: April 29, 2013, 02:27:40 PM »

Excerpt
A simple definition for me runs along the lines of losing or compromising myself in attempt to get in the good graces or favor of someone else

I didn't particularly care what he thought of me. I just wanted him to be OK. I just wanted to meet his needs because him being OK was more important than mine. I do think there's a difference. I'm not in denial of my victim stance, I've been there, I may be there again I'm sure. But something different was happening in my BPD r/s. I absolutely set myself aside for somebody else. I lost myself in somebody else.

I didn't resent any of it. I loved it! I just wanted to sink into him in any way that I could. I accepted him and he accepted me or so I thought.

As soon as I began to feel a slight shift, a slight feeling that something was very wrong he sensed it and dumped me. Maybe that was the beginning of resentment- in fact it probably was. I was trying to plan my son's birthday party and he kept giving me tasks to do for him. I just felt so empty and so, so tired. I was so tired I could hardly speak and he was asking me 'what's the matter with you'. I just felt attacked. He shouted at me about his pudding and I left the room. I sat with my bag packed but I knew I couldn't leave. I wanted to be at home in my bed and I lay all night wondering why I couldn't be. He apologised, said I was acting like his ex wife but that was because he was 'too spikey' for a relationship.

If that had carried on I'd have got there- but he knew as well as I it couldn't carry on. He dumped me a couple of days after.

Feel angry Laelle. You have every right to.  You in now way deserved his s*** and I stick on my point that article isn't about you albeit you may have codependent traits.  

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laelle
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« Reply #29 on: April 29, 2013, 03:15:02 PM »

Feel angry Laelle. You have every right to.  You in now way deserved his s*** and I stick on my point that article isn't about you albeit you may have codependent traits.  

Thank you Maria 

I'm not perfect, but I did not want him to be dependent on me.  I wanted to complement his life, not own it.
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