Now a few years into codependency recovery it’s clear to see in the past how I was controlled by what was “outside me” to a large degree. That’s ironic since I thought then I was in control. In one of his books Dr. Charles Whitfield calls this way of being as “addiction to looking elsewhere”. It is rooted in childhood. My external focus came about as a means of avoiding pain in my inner world while growing up in an out-of-control dysfunctional family. Then a lot of my thinking was how to avoid upsetting the adults in control of me. What was a survival skill in youth became difficulty as an adult. I was a grown man but still acting like a child, but could not see it since such behavior seemed “normal” to me. Then I never understood why others might say things like “you’re acting like a child”, “quit being a baby” or “you’re acting like you’re six years old”. I get it now and know they were correct. Half the cure is knowing.
is the incapacity
to use one’s intelligence
without the guidance of another.