Co-Dependency is a learned behavior which affects an individuals’ ability to have healthy relationships by creating certain emotional and behavioral conditions. For example, two people in a co-dependent relationship become so invested in each other that they can’t fathom functioning independently anymore. One party enables the other’s addiction, poor mental health, immaturity, irresponsibility, or under-achievement. There is a need and reliance for approval and identity.
Commonly cited symptoms of Co-Dependency are: intense and unstable interpersonal relationships, inability to tolerate being alone, accompanied by frantic efforts to avoid being alone, chronic feelings of boredom and emptiness, subordinating one's own needs to those of the person with whom one is involved, overwhelming desire for acceptance and affection, external referencing (looking at outside factors such as people or events for cause and effect, rather than looking at one's own choices), dishonesty and denial, and low self-worth.
It is worthwhile to mention that Co-Dependency is not a a clinical diagnosis. However, this is a situation many people get into and need help to get themselves out of a state of feeling “stuck”. If you feel you may be experiencing symptoms of co-dependency, this quiz may help you and your provider determine what your next steps should be.