Understanding Co-dependence

I’d heard the term codependence many times before, and usually associated it with romantic relationships. A friend of mine mentioned she recently read a book on Facing Codependence from Pia Mellody. I did a youtube search and found a 10 minute video that I find myself recommending a lot the last few weeks. From there I’ve watched a lot of Pia’s longer videos.

My big take away was her referring to the word abuse, and the suggestion that in our culture we usually only refer to abuse as violent physical or sexual actions. However the suggestion is that codependence is when you take any actions or behaviours that are intended to condition the other human to behave in a way you want them to behave, as opposed to how they want to behave in order to be the best versions of themselves.

This is likely easiest to think of your parents — how many of their actions are conditioning you to be like them and how they want(ed) you to be, vs supporting you in your endeavours, no matter how polarized these desires are from their own beliefs.

My challenge to you, is for the next week whenever you interact with another human, consider how much of your behaviour is selfless actions to support them, vs codependent behaviours.