What fools these mortals be.
If you have any doubts about what Co-dependency is, then you probably don't have it. If you continually find yourself in nightmare situations with people, people who you have no idea why you have anything to do with (present readers to this blog excluded), then you have some idea as to the severity of co-dependency. While it is helpful to identify perpetrators and "qualifiers", the most helpful thing of all is to recognize that it is YOU that is the problem, or rather "I". This is the first step in getting help.
Co-dependency is very tough to recognize because it is often hidden by behaviors that enable, enmesh and generally confuse one. But when you get some idea of the horrors of doing the same thing over and over again with people, whether in friendships or an intimate relationship, you realize just how insidious this dynamic is. Suddenly when you suggest to people your needs and they just laugh at you and continue to attempt to recycle the dynamic of your friendship, well you are in for a big surprise. Why isn't that person doing what I have requested they do? Why do they simply continue with their "agenda". Once again, it is most helpful to realize that it is YOU that is the one with the problem. And WHAT a problem it is. To actually face ones codependency can be one of the most difficult and horrifying tasks ever, because it requires a total examination of ones past and the original qualifier who began this entire cycle: the parent/s. To actually attempt to short circuit this cycle of addiction, and it is an addiction, means having to look at shit that you have buried for years and years. But as you get closer to the truth, the jig is up and you can no longer pretend that the same systems work anymore. There is enormous liberation in this, but not until you have gone through agonizing pain.
I attended my first Coda meeting tonight. It was extremely hopeful. Anyone locked in a terrible relationship with anyone can take to heart the fact that there is help out there. Google Codependents anonymous and there will be a list of meetings in your area. Don't let this deadly disease take you down. Have strength and be of good courage. There is help.