Do you: Fear rejection and being unlovable? Believe you’re not quite good enough? Take things personally or often feel like a victim? Pick on yourself for everything, including how you think, feel, look, and act? Feed off the neediness of others, or devote all your energy to your one-and-only? If so, chances are you suffer from codependency or, as some members of the mental health community have been relabeling it, self-love deficiency disorder.
Suffering from Self-Love Deficiency Disorder
The terms “codependency” and “codependent” get tossed around a lot these days. There are codependent parents, codependent couples, codependent friends, and even codependent coworkers. And, let’s face it, almost all of us claim to suffer from a bit of codependency when faced with certain situations. But what does it really mean to be codependent, and is it a life sentence?
What is codependency?
When it first came out, the term codependency was used to describe a dysfunctional relationship where one partner or person becomes the caretaker of another, who usually suffers from an illness, or addiction of some kind. However, today we know that codependency describes a much broader issue. At its heart, codependency is a set of learned behaviors that one develops to cope with the stress and anxiety he or she feels when attachments with their primary caregivers or intimate partners are deficient. It’s an excessive emotional, physical, and psychological reliance or dependency on a person or relationship that is completely dysfunctional and/or toxic.