My definition of a Codependent person is someone who takes responsibility for the feelings, behaviors, and thoughts of other people. The people connected to this unhealthy dynamic may be a family member(s), spouse, partner, addict, an irresponsible adult child, friend, or someone dealing with an untreated mental illness. The codependent enables those around him or her through rescuing and caretaking behaviors. A Codependents identity revolves around the lives of “other people’s stuff.” Many Codependents have a hard time understanding who they are because things have always been about the people in their environment.
A Codependent does not set boundaries, which result in him or her doing too much for others and too little for themselves. This behavior and thinking lead to feelings of resentment, anger, sadness, anxiety, shame, hopelessness, subconscious controlling behaviors, financial burdens, physical ailments, and addictions. When a Codependent see specific behaviors in an unhealthy relationship, they often struggle with accepting the reality of what they observed. Many Codependent believe they can save or change others (while never seeing themselves as controlling or manipulative). A Codependent is attracted to “needy” and dysfunctional relationships.