“We are all alone, born alone, die alone, and—in spite of True Romance magazines—we shall all someday look back on our lives and see that, in spite of our company, we were alone the whole way. I do not say lonely—at least, not all the time—but essentially, and finally, alone. This is what makes your self-respect so important, and I don’t see how you can respect yourself if you must look in the hearts and minds of others for your happiness.”
You have controlled me for years. You have forced me to constantly doubt where I stand with the people around me and to always put myself second. Serving people is a pure thing, until it becomes toxic. The problem with putting everyone else first constantly is that people learn you come second. And you begin to believe you come second. The problem with you, codependency, is that you make me stand in the flames to keep the people around me warm at night.
You have caused me to live my life as a rescuer. Rescuing people can be a good thing… until that person never asked to be rescued.”
Codependency, you have taught me heartbreak. Through trial and error with several boyfriends, I learned the hard way that you cannot “fix” people, especially when those people never asked for your help in the first place.
You have made “I’m sorry” become the most used phrase in my vocabulary. Apologizing for your actions is a good thing until you find yourself doing it for no good reason. I do not have to apologize for every little thing in my life. Moreover, I do not have to apologize for being me.”
“Anxiety. Depression. PTSD. Codependency. On any given day, I’m dealing with one or more of these issues. It has taken several years for me to understand what I’m going through. I didn’t realize I was codependent until recently. That one hit harder than the others. Most of my behaviors stem from one of my issues. It feels like my entire personality is a lie. Everything I held with pride as part of who I was; it all comes from poor mental health. I’ve had a minor identity crisis for the past year. I’m rediscovering who I am as a person.
The first thing I discovered about myself was I didn’t like myself. Most of that dislike grew from anxiety and depression. And from not receiving much of any positive attention for the majority of my life. I rarely receive compliments. When I do, my first thought is to point out my flaws. The next thought is that person is lying. They’re not genuine. I’ve been working to ignore these thoughts and say thank you. It feels selfish sometimes to only thank someone for anything. Then I remember how much one thank you would mean to me. I’ve rarely gotten a thank you for anything.
I spent my life not aware of how much I disliked myself. I often felt I didn’t deserve happiness. I felt I had to earn it in some way. But no one could tell me how to earn it. Life doesn’t come with a manual. No one tells you how to take care of your body. No one tells you how to make friends. No one tells you how to talk to potential romantic or sexual partners. Not for me anyway. Most people have their parents and families in these situations. I didn’t. My parents were dealing with their own issues.”
“If you don’t establish boundaries in a relationship you are allowing them to become toxic relationships in your life. When working on your boundaries the first thing you should do is accept your emotions as what they are. Once you can accept how you feel, you can start validating them yourself and in turn expressing those emotions outward. For example: If you are at work and your boss asks you to come in on the weekend, before you react right away I want you to take a second to acknowledge how you feel. If you are happy to pick up those hours then you may reply with something like “yes, I would be happy to work this weekend.” However, if you are feeling upset/sad that your boss is asking you to pick up more hours than you may say something like “Thanks, but I can’t.” This may be hard at first, especially for people that are codependent because they feel the need to make others around them happy. However, the more you do this exercise the easier and more rewarding it will become”