Codependency is a term used in relationships that involve people with a substance use disorder. It’s important to understand exactly what codependency is along with the main causes and symptoms of the disorder. At Gateway Foundation, we offer useful information on how to treat this problem and addiction within the family to achieve codependency recovery.
What Is Codependency?
Codependency is a behavioral and emotional disorder that can be inherited. It’s also called “relationship addiction.” Codependent people neglect their own needs to fulfill the needs of others. They forfeit their values and well-being to focus totally on assisting another person.
Codependents usually build unhealthy relationships because of their low self-esteem. They get involved with people who are excessively needy, irresponsible and cannot return all the love and affection they sow. In many cases, these relationships are abusive.
Symptoms of Codependency
If a person is taking care of someone addicted to alcohol or drugs, they may be codependent or a part of a codependent relationship. Here are some of the main symptoms of codependency:
- Difficulty expressing feelings: Refusing to talk about emotions and thoughts, and thinking their opinion doesn’t matter. They also find it hard to express their feelings properly.
- A desire to feel loved by all: Many codependent people don’t love themselves, so they earnestly seek love, approval and acceptance from other people.
- Difficulty setting boundaries: They tolerate emotionally, physically and psychologically harmful attitudes and behavior from other people. They continue to get hurt and harbor resentment and bitterness.
- Putting aside personal needs for those of others: Rather than care for personal needs first, they let their lives revolve around the needs of someone else. They feel they’ll get all their fulfillment from that relationship.
- Remaining loyal without reason: They stay in harmful situations for a long time just to keep a relationship, even when it’s dangerous. They remain trapped, and after leaving, they fall into another abusive relationship.
- Denying or ignoring problems: Behaving as if everything is okay instead of looking for ways to solve personal problems. Seeking solace through drugs, alcohol, work or food.
- Low self-esteem: Codependent people get their sense of worth through the help they offer. They lack self-confidence and often feel rejected.
- Poor communication skills: They make indirect statements by slamming doors, stomping or sighing. They also beg, bribe or threaten others to get what they need.
- Feeling depressed and withdrawn: In the final stage of codependency, people go into isolation, become depressed and lethargic and develop mental illnesses.
- Refusing to seek help: Unfortunately, most codependent people don’t seek help early because they feel their problems aren’t really bad.
Why Is Codependency Dangerous?
A codependent relationship is very dangerous when one or both people involved are addicted to drugs or alcohol. The negative cycle of substance abuse and codependent behavior will continue until something breaks it. Unfortunately, a tragic event can result, such as a job loss, divorce, overdose or auto accident. The most effective way to break the negative cycle is to seek treatment for both addiction and codependency.
How Effective Are Codependency Treatment Strategies?
With the right personalized codependency treatment plan, you can overcome substance abuse and codependency issues. If you’re codependent, our codependency rehab treatment can help you recover and begin developing healthy relationships.
Our codependent treatment strategies are effective because we address issues within the family unit. Our family therapy program helps:
- Locate codependent behaviors and discover how to change them
- Show members of the family how to establish boundaries for addicted members
- Develop effective communication skills
- Resolve family conflict
We Offer Effective Codependency Rehab
If you or your family member is addicted or trapped in a codependent relationship, call Gateway Foundation today for full details about our life-saving addiction treatment that works. We’ve been providing high-quality addiction treatment in Illinois for over 50 years
Call 877.381.6538 to book an appointment or send a message through our contact page today.