Codependent No More How to Stop Controlling Others and Start Caring for Yourself characters Æ 107

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Codependent No More How to Stop Controlling Others and Start Caring for YourselfS book is for you the codependent This inspiring new overview of codependency by Melody Beattie a recovering alcoholic and former chemical dependency counselor details its characteristics where the behavior comes from and how it affects us and those around us Offering hope and guidance Codependent No More discusses several options to controlling behavior and helps us understand that letting go will set us freeWe're so careful to see that no one gets hurt No one that is but ourselves Anonymous Al Anon memberCover design by David Marty. Taken from my blog at case it isn't already clear I'm talking about two separate books here One book is titled Codependent No More and the other is Beyond Codependency I picked them up at the library after hearing the term codependent used in The Emotionally Abusive Relationship I've been interested in learning about the concept in the past and never gotten around to itSo what is codependency The term was coined originally to describe spouses of those dependent on alcohol or other drugs For example we'll say a woman is married to an alcoholic husband The husband dependent on the alcohol is hampered in his ability to overcome alcoholism because of his codependent wifeThis does not mean the wife is an alcoholic and it does not mean she approves of the alcoholic's behavior It means that her warped way of coping with that stress actually enables her husband's problem She might try to ignore the problem or try to solve the problem herself or cover up for her husband but whatever her behavior she is actually taking responsibility for his behavior or her shoulders She is an enabler she makes it easy for him to be an alcoholic When the problem gets worse and worse and the wife doesn't understand why she's bound to feel hopeless helpless angry stressed and probably bitterThe term is now used in a broad sense you can use the term or concept or ideas or paradigm if you don't feel the need to use the latest pop culture terminology to describe one who feels compelled to help others to the point of hurting themself and the intended compassionate recipient The best line is these two books is that codependents do all the wrong things for all the right reasonsOne of the most interesting and least explored concepts covered in the chronology or pattern of behavior Here's my takeFirst the codependent is essentially a victim of somebody else's addictive or destructive behavior As such they are to be pitied and helpedNext the codependent tries to figure out how to cope with a situation that is not their fault and they have no control over The natural instinct is to try to gain some control over the situation But instead of doing it the healthy way controlling themself by setting boundaries and knowing how to enforce them they try to control the other person by helping them in various waysLastly when the problem gets worse and worse the codependent becomes angry bitter and dejected as a result of their failed attempts to gain some level of control over a situation that was already impossibly difficult to deal with It is at this point that a codependent becomes an ugly force to be reckoned with As they bounce between the second and third phase they may play a Jekyll Hyde game appearing intensely angry and controlling at some moments and at other moments seem to be the kindest most giving person possible It is at this stage that the original victim can become abusiveAt first most people will be naturally drawn to a codependent because of the codependent's ability to give and give and give and give When it eventually becomes apparent that the charitable behaviors are actually a warped way of controlling the world around them a psychologically healthy person will turn the other direction and run as fast as they can They will be able to sense inherently that their boundaries are being infringed on in a subtle and destructive mannerI spent a lot of time pondering the conflict between charity and codependency and wondering if I could really bring this book in line with my religious views I'll save that for a separate blog entry I also pondered my own tendency toward codependency Did I learn behaviors that have been passed down through the generations Or do I have some trauma I am dealing with in my life Whatever the answer my New Year's Resolution is to stop worrying about other people and learn to love and accept myself So far it's feeling fabulous and I think it is helping me to be charitable toward others rather than less charitableOkay enough of explanations I thought the concepts covered in these books were eye opening and instructive I think it's a great paradigm to explore However I think a better book could be written Codependent No More is essentially the Go To book about codependency I found it well written but somewhat rambling and repetitive Somewhat like this blog Just as I found myself intrigued by a concept the author would go into some lengthy story that only partially made sense to me as somebody who has never dealt with an alcoholic or chemically dependent person I actually enjoyed Beyond Codependency because it dealt with solutions to the problem than lengthy descriptions Once I got it I got it and was bored with further detail in the first bookI found myself wishing for a book that was written for a wider audience and in broad terms with less focus on the alcoholism angle As it turns out I found the perfect book by accident I saw a book at Deseret Book titled I Don't Have to Make Everything All Better and was reminded of the codependency angle So I bought it on a whim It's exactly what I didn't realize I was looking for and it'll be up next in this four part series of Self Help book reviewsFor information about codependencyAccording to Mental Health America some random website I found online which described it better than most the symptoms of codependency are An exaggerated sense of responsibility for the actions of othersA tendency to confuse love and pity with the tendency to “love” people they can pity and rescueA tendency to do than their share all of the timeA tendency to become hurt when people don’t recognize their effortsAn unhealthy dependence on relationships The co dependent will do anything to hold on to a relationship; to avoid the feeling of abandonmentAn extreme need for approval and recognitionA sense of guilt when asserting themselvesA compelling need to control othersLack of trust in self andor othersFear of being abandoned or aloneDifficulty identifying feelingsRigiditydifficulty adjusting to changeProblems with intimacyboundaries

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Codependent No More How to Stop Controlling Others and Start Caring for Yourself characters Æ 107 Ö Three years on the New York Times bestseller list CODEPENDENT NO MORE first identified attitudes feelings and behaviors now recognized as hallmarks of codependency Checklists activitiesThree years on the New York Times bestseller list CODEPENDENT NO MORE first identified attitudes feelings and behaviors now recognized as hallmarks of codependency Checklists activities and self tests provide concrete tasks to help readers examine the nuances of codependency in their livesRECOVERY AND WELLNESSAN Expert Guide to Achieving Serenity for Codependents Who Want to Take Care of ThemselvesHave you become so absorbed in other people's problems that you don't have time to identify or solve your ownDo you care so deeply about o. I knew this was a classic of the genre but I found myself unimpressed by it Maybe I came at it with the wrong expectations I was thinking of co dependency in a generic sense — say the way a married couple can be enmeshed and lose their boundaries with each other Beattie's book instead seems dated to me bound up as it is with the classic origins of the term co dependence in the partners of alcoholicsFor me the constant references to alcohol and Al Anon grated on me as did mentions of her religious persuasion Yes she nodded to spirituality but in the end this was an unabashed God led Twelve Step book This was not what I came for I was also unimpressed by her denigration of therapyI have preferred Pia Mellody's Facing Love Addiction for better coverage of this topic I'm also keen to read Leslie Irvine's Codependent Forever which is an even handed critiue of CoDA and the recovery moment in generalFor any men reading this review I can't imagine there will be too many I will give my strongest recommendation to Dr Robert Glover's No More Mr Nice Guy which is essentially a co dependence book aimed at men

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Ther people that you've forgotten how to care for yourselfDo you need to control events and people around you because you feel everything around and inside you is out of controlDo you feel responsible for so much because the people around you feel responsible for so littleBy its nature alcoholism and other compulsive disorders create victims out of everyone close to the afflicted person Whether the person you love is an alcoholic a gambler a foodaholic a workaholic a sexaholic a criminal a rebellious teenager or a neurotic parent thi. What I learned from this book Good grief I learned soooooo much This book opened my eyes to the path toward self discovery self love and learning how to deal with difficult relationships I very highly recommend this book not just for people who live with an alcoholic but for anyone who is trying desperately hard to fix a bad relationship whether it's with your spouse your parents your childrenwith anyone you love I learned how my upbringing has the power to wreck my current and future relationships if I let it I learned how to let go of the unfixablethat the only person I have any control over is myself I learned that I can let go of all that free floating guilt that I never earned What a relief The tenets of this book are so simpleyou wonder why you didn't think of them yourself But the truth is Ms Beattie writes in such a simple straight forward way that even though you may have heard much of this before you never really processed it At least that was my experience I wish I had read this book years ago