B is a fictional character based my client’s experiences. All events depicted here actually happened in someone’s life (or a group of people) in the last week. Permission was sought to use life events but no names have been revealed……
I have been offering online therapy for over 10 years. During that time, I have built up a speciality in many areas of psychology (especially Codependency) and helped many clients move forward. Contact me for a free consultation. I engage fully with my clients to ensure the best possible chance of recovery. I firmly believe that awareness is important but action is the decisive element of recovery. I accompany my clients along that road not only by offering sessions focusing on their issues but as a resource between sessions too.
I have always known that I am a certain type of person. I give generously and without limits but only recently have I come to the awareness that I do this for a very good reason. I have the expectation of return. When I say return, I know now that I want to obligate the person I do things for. I buy their love and hence my security. In theory. However, I also know that I react in a certain way when I perceive that that return is not forthcoming. I am always hyper-vigilant and looking for clues as to whether my needs are to be fulfilled. When not, I get panicky and nasty. This was all pointed out to me in therapy recently. I am codependent. Not that I didn’t know….I just didn’t want to hear it.
I had a bad fight with A this week. A is my partner and the one I chose a long time ago to spend the rest of my life with. Yet, I am insecure about the future. I watch him constantly and put him under scrutiny to see if his mood changes. When I think it does, I sense trouble and panic. Then I lose control. Yes, as a codependent, I have anger issues when frustration builds. My therapist who understands codependency said this is normal for codependents. I know it is normal for me. Anyway, I blew my top when I sensed that he wasn’t giving me the reassurance I felt I needed and that was it..the red zone. Accusation after accusation, blaming and insult flew in his direction…bad, hurtful stuff that cut deep. I was overwhelmed with the anger and then the guilt and shame. I went back to a time long ago…… Instead of the reassurance I wanted, I got the opposite. Looking back now, I see what went wrong and that point where I could have stopped it. That is my issue. I know but I don’t do it. When things died down, I was rightly chastised by him and by myself and told it can never happen again. What a week!! I am working on how to deal with the triggers that cause this. I am beginning to understand…..
B is struggling with what is known as the Drama Triangle which is the key element of control in many codependent relationships. The constant cycle of trying to fix, becoming angry when return is not given and victimhood when called out keeps the dysfunction going. In therapy, we are working on the triggers to this but also on deeper issues to give B a sense of Self with healthy boundaries.