codependency

Lost Childhood The Effects of Dysfunctional Family

This article addresses something that impacts many of us— the lasting effects of growing up in a dysfunctional family. Growing up in a dysfunctional family can be lonely, scary, and confusing. And children in dysfunctional families don’t have typical childhoods. What is a dysfunctional family? Let’s start by defining what we mean by “dysfunctional family.” …

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6 Defining Symptoms of Codependency

We use the term codependency rather loosely these days. It’s great that more people are familiar with codependency, but if it’s going to help us understand ourselves in a meaningful way, we need to be clear about what codependency is – and what it isn’t. In a nutshell, people who identify as codependent usually play …

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How to Create Interdependent Relationships

What is an interdependent relationship? Humans are social beings; we’ve always craved connection and depended on each other for our survival. Relying on others for emotional and practical support is a natural part of the human experience. This is called interdependency. In an interdependent relationship, people rely on each other for support and love—and also …

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Setting boundaries in enmeshed relationships

Key points about boundaries and enmeshed relationships: What is an enmeshed relationship? An enmeshed relationship lacks boundaries. People in enmeshed relationships are so close that they lose their individual identities. Enmeshed relationships can be between parents and children, siblings, romantic partners, or friends. If you’re in an enmeshed relationship, you may: People in enmeshed relationships …

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Adult Children Dysfunctional Families Need for Control

Feeling out of control is scary for most people, but even more so for adult children. The term adult children (or adult child) refers to individuals that grew up in dysfunctional families. This includes having parents, caregivers, or close family members who struggled with substance use, mental health issues, rage, narcissistic behaviors, or were abusive. …

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3 Pillars of Codependency Recovery

Codependency is a complex set of traits and interpersonal dynamics. Recovery can feel overwhelming—especially in the beginning. To help you get started, I’ll describe three pillars of the framework I developed for codependency recovery and offer some reflective questions to aid you in changing your codependent thoughts and behaviors. The three pillars of codependency recovery …

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Understanding Family Enmeshment

Most people want to have close family relationships, if possible. However, family bonds can become too close, lacking boundaries and inhibiting individual identity development. This is a phenomenon known as family enmeshment—a dysfunctional dynamic that occurs when there is there isn’t enough emotional separation among family members. In this article, we’ll discuss: Definition of Enmeshment Enmeshment …

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how to spot a codependent friendship

Friends play an important role in our lives. A friend is a trusted confidant, someone who “gets” you like no one else, and a source of fun and solace. A true friend has your back and supports you through life’s ups and downs. But friendships, like any other relationship, aren’t always healthy. Not all friendships …

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How to Develop Self-Worth after Childhood Trauma

Do you find it difficult to feel good about yourself? Do you compare yourself to others and feel defective, inferior, or inadequate? When you don’t have a strong sense of self-worth, it can be hard to set boundaries, prioritize self-care, ask for a raise, or have healthy, satisfying relationships with others. In this article, you’ll …

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Guilt-Free Boundaries

Many of us avoid setting boundaries because we feel guilty when we set a limit or ask for something. Feeling guilty is understandable, but often not warranted. The tips in this article can help you set boundaries without guilt. Boundaries are important for several reasons. They create healthy relationships and clear expectations. Boundaries protect us …

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