Waking up to the fact that I have become a codependent again really sucks. Definition of codependent as on dictionary.com is
co⋅de⋅pend⋅ent - of or pertaining to a relationship in which one person is physically or psychologically addicted, as to alcohol or gambling, and the other person is psychologically dependent on the first in an unhealthy way.
Well…that definition fits what is going in my life. The constant feeling of addiction (constantly looking, texting, making notes, calling). I have become very codependent on a couple of things. Those being social networking sites (Twitter & Facebook) and a couple friendships that really mean a lot to me. It’s having a very negative effect on me and the effect on the others involved is noticeable. The codependency that has developed comes from stress, anxiety, peer envy and even a little bit of boredom.
Thing is, when you are trying to figure out who you are & what you are about…you sometimes slip into unhealthy patterns. This is mine. What doesn’t help and is a very vicious cycle is the peer envy mentioned earlier (read the article at http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-1222961/It-Peer-envy-rife-got–Failed-Potential-Syndrome–got-it.html) You connect with old acquaintances and people who you share similar interests on Facebook, Twitter, MySpace and see what these people are achieving, you end up feeling shitty about it because you feel like you’re not achieving jack shit (which may or may not be true). Yet you go back to said social site to talk to these people and they talk back…after awhile…you spend a shitload of time on these sites. You feel the envy and yet instead of walking away…you come back, spending everyday, hours on end on these sites. A very vicious cycle of dependency.
As for the codependent friendships, this is a very tough thing. It’s development is definitely from stress & loneliness. I am going to reveal a bit here. I’m currently in Illinois, the southern suburbs of Chicago visiting my family. It had been nearly 5 years since I had seen the family. With the exception of my mom…I feel like I am alien to the rest of them. I am having seriously issues in communicating with them. When we do talk…I end up feeling really guilty about what I have achieved. The guilt made me become reluctant to talk to my family about anything. I can talk to my mom a bit, yet it just wasn’t enough. So I began calling & e-mailing everyday to some friends and some of the stuff I could have just dealt with, yet I felt like I “needed” to vent to the friends. I’ve turned everything to me, me, me when we talk and then asking them about their day. I’ve constantly vented my frustrations to the friends and not listened to their frustrations (which is a constant source of worry for me) like I should. Needless to say, things are becoming toxic and I see what is going on. I feel guilty (which can, yet this time will not, cause a vicious cycle of codependency).
So what can one do? Break the codependency? YES! Find strength within? YES! Be true to myself and go on with my goals? HELL YES!!!
The codependency of social networking media…it’s hard as what I am passionate about (writing & photography) uses a lot of social media to give and receive a lot ideas.
However it is breakable by
- Walking away from the computer
- Spending time learning by face to face interaction
- Go and read more
As for the neediness of/codependency on friends…breakable by
- Give the friends space
- Spending time doing constructive hobbies and following passions
- Go for walks and/or some for exercise
- Check out friendship blogs for support.
The last issue which can compound the codependency is peer envy. Peer envy (a.k.a Failed Potential Syndrome) is basically where you feel envy of others (friends, family, acquaintances) achievements and saying “I should/could have done that!”
Ways to beat it
- Doing for yourself…not because of others
- Being grateful for what you have
- Celebrating your own successes
- Being true to your self on all levels
- Celebrating the successes of others
For all three…remembering one major help in breaking all of them is…
YES! Sounds Simple!
YES! Easier said than done especially as life can get in the way!
YES! I am even struggling with them
YET…IT IS POSSIBLE TO BREAK THEM!
If you are dealing with codependency…please talk about it! We can all support each other on this life draining issue!