Ten Basics

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November 21, 2011


The above article discusses codependency as a learned behavior; what is learned can be unlearned. Many people have heard of codependency as it relates to those who live with individuals addicted to things such as drugs, alcohol, sex, and gambling. However, codependency can occur in any type of relationship, even those relationships which do not involve someone else’s addictions. Codependency, which I choose to speak of as loss of self in someone else, can occur in a variety of relationships including our relationships with our partners, our children, our aging parents, our friends, and our co-workers, and its origins can come from a number of possible sources that include but are not limited to living with addictions, chronic illness, abuse, neglect, perfectionism, and rigidity.

In Disentangle: When You’ve Lost Your Self in Someone Else, the central theme is codependent relationships. It offers practical tips on how to get emotional freedom from such relationships and to rediscover your true sense of self. The process is not easy, but you can do it. I have worked with many individuals over the years who felt trapped by such relationships and yet many have benefited by this recovery process. As you begin this disentangling process, I have found it useful to understand it in terms of these ten Basics:

It’s about the experience of losing your Self

It’s about unhealthy attachments

It’s about finding you

It’s about getting balance

It’s about intervening on your behalf

It’s about spiritual growth

It’s a process without rules or sequence

It’s a process that takes time

Every day ain’t great

Don’t go this alone

In future blogs, I will delve into each of these Basics and cover many other aspects of this disentangling process including specific ideas for change. However, for now, an understanding of the Basics is a good foundation for learning and growth.


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