Co-dependency, or co-dependence, co-narcissism, or inverted narcissism, is an unhealthy relationship dynamic. It is a tendency to behave in overly passive or excessively care taking ways. It happens when one or both partners in a relationship tend to lead too much of their lives through the other person. This negativity impacts one’s relationships and quality of life. Over the years in counseling couples, I noticed nearly all had co-dependency traits. It involves putting one’s needs at a lower priority than others while being excessively preoccupied with the needs of others. Co-dependency also occurs in other relationships, including, families, work, friendships, and with romance, peer or community relationships. It can be associated with denial, low self-esteem, excessive compliance to others, or control patterns. Co-dependency is definitely a sickness in our society. There is an organization for co-dependence called C. O. D. A., who incorporates a 12 step program just like Alcoholic Anonymous.
Recovering from co-dependency, in essence, involves learning to love and take care of you. It basically means giving some time to you; to look after your needs. I don’t mean being totally selfish. It means setting strong boundaries, high self-esteem, and learning to say no when appropriate. Take a look at our e-books “Secrets to a Romantic Love Affair in One Week” and learn how to escape the trap of co-dependency. For a start, we suggest you take a look at our book “Restore the Passion,” Day 5. This book is filled with lots of tips, great ideas to set you free of co- dependency once and for all. After reading this book it would be advantageous to peruse the other six books in this series, to guide you in your pursuit for answers.