- We come from a dysfunctional home in which our emotional needs were not met.
- Having received little real nurturing ourselves, we try to vicariously fill this unmet need by becoming a caregiver, especially toward people who appear needy.
- Because we were never able to change our parents into the warm, loving care takers we longed for, we respond deeply to the emotionally unavailable person whom we find familiar and whom we try to change (to give us what we need) through our love.
- Terrified of abandonment, we will do anything to hold on to a relationship and avoid painful abandonment feelings. We first experienced these feelings while living with people who were never there emotionally for us. Most often, we were not aware that we were not getting what we needed!
- Almost nothing is too much trouble, takes too much time, or is too expensive if it will “help” the person we are involved with. Our thoughts are other-oriented rather than self-oriented.
- Accustomed to lack of love in personal relationships, we are willing to wait, hope and try harder to please.
- We are willing to take far more than 50 percent of the responsibility, guilt and blame in any relationship.
From “Codependency: A Family Perspective” by Robin Norwood (list cont’d tomorrow)
Don’t sacrifice yourself too much,
because if you sacrifice too much
there’s nothing else you can give
and nobody will care for you.