5 Signs You Are Codependent

5 Signs You Are Codependent

Are you a Codependent?

•             Do you keep quiet to avoid arguments?

•             Are you always worried about others’ opinions of you?

•             Have you ever lived with someone with an alcohol or drug problem?

•             Have you ever lived with someone who hits or belittles you?

•             Are the opinions of others more important than your own?

•             Do you feel rejected when significant others spend time with friends?

•             Do you doubt your ability to be who you want to be?

•             Are you uncomfortable expressing your true feelings to others?

•             Do you feel like a “bad person” when you make a mistake?

•             Do you have difficulty taking compliments or gifts?

•             Do you think people in your life would go downhill without your constant efforts?

•             Do you frequently wish someone could help you get things done?

•             Are you confused about who you are or where you are going with your life?

•             Do you have trouble saying “no” when asked for help?

•             Do you have trouble asking for help?

 

What is Codependency?

Codependency is defined as a psychological condition or a relationship in which a person is controlled or manipulated by another who is affected with a pathological condition (typically narcissism or drug addiction); and in broader terms, it refers to the dependence on the needs of, or control of, another. It also often involves placing a lower priority on one’s own needs, while being excessively preoccupied with the needs of others. Codependency can occur in any type of relationship, including family, work, friendship, and also romantic, peer or community relationships. Codependency often affects a spouse, a parent, sibling, friend, or co-worker of a person afflicted with alcohol or drug dependence.

Harmful Effects of Being Codependent

Unresolved patterns of codependency can lead to more serious problems like alcoholism, drug addiction, eating disorders, sex addiction, and other self-destructive or self-defeating behaviors. People with codependency are also more likely to attract further abuse from aggressive individuals, more likely to stay in stressful jobs or relationships, less likely to seek medical attention when needed and are also less likely to get promotions and tend to earn less money than those without codependency patterns.

For some, the social insecurity caused by codependency can progress into full-blown social anxiety disorders like social phobia, avoidant personality disorder or painful shyness. Other stress-related disorders like panic disorder, depression or PTSD may also be present.

Characteristics of Co-dependent People Are:

•             An exaggerated sense of responsibility for the actions of others

•             A tendency to confuse love and pity, with the tendency to “love” people they can pity and rescue

•             A tendency to do more than their share, all of the time

•             A tendency to become hurt when people don’t recognize their efforts

•             An unhealthy dependence on relationships. The co-dependent will do anything to hold on to a   relationship; to avoid the feeling of abandonment

•             An extreme need for approval and recognition

•             A sense of guilt when asserting themselves

•             A compelling need to control others

•             Lack of trust in self and/or others

•             Fear of being abandoned or alone

•             Difficulty identifying feelings

•             Rigidity/difficulty adjusting to change

•             Problems with intimacy/boundaries

•             Chronic anger

•             Lying/dishonesty

•             Poor communications

•             Difficulty making decisions

 

5 Signs of Codependency

#1. The codependent makes excuses for the other person’s behavior.

 

#2. The codependent enables the person with the problem to keep going down the wrong path and is in denial that the other person has a problem. Likewise, the opposite is also true: the codependent doesn’t realize that they have a problem and thinks that they are helping the troubled person when they are really not.

 

#3. The codependent takes care of everything such as money, the household, etc.

 

#4. The codependent acts like the main person in order to keep a good family image.

 

#5. The codependent withdraws from others and acts like he/she doesn’t care what others have to say.

 

Sources:

http://voices.yahoo.com/

www.wikipedia.org

http://www.webmd.com

http://www.mentalhealthamerica.net

 

Dialectical Behavioral Therapy for Addiction

Dialectical Behavioral Therapy for Addiction 

Dialectical Behavioral Therapy for Addiction (DBT) is a comprehensive treatment program whose ultimate goal is to aid patients in their efforts to build a life worth living. It combines standard cognitive-behavioral techniques for emotion regulation and reality-testing with concepts of distress tolerance, acceptance, and mindful awareness largely derived from Buddhist meditative practice. Research indicates that DBT is effective in treating patients who present varied symptoms and behaviors associated with mood disorders, including self-injury. Recent work suggests its effectiveness for treating chemical dependency.

When dialectical behavioral therapy for addiction is successful, the patient learns to envision, articulate, pursue, and sustain goals that are independent of his or her history of out-of-control behavior, including substance abuse, and is better able to grapple with life’s ordinary problems. The fundamental principle of DBT is to create a dynamic that promotes two opposed goals for patients: change and acceptance.

The treatment includes five essential functions:

  • improving patient motivation to change
  • enhancing patient capabilities
  • generalizing new behaviors
  • structuring the environment
  • enhancing therapist capability and motivation

History of Dialectical Behavioral Therapy

DBT was initially used as the standard behavioral therapy of the 1970s to treat chronically suicidal individuals. Subsequently, Dialectical Behavioral Therapy for Addiction was adapted for use with individuals with both severe substance use disorder (SUD) and borderline personality disorder (BPD), one of the most common dual diagnoses in cases of addiction. DBT includes explicit strategies for overcoming some of the most difficult problems that complicate treatment of both conditions.

Dialectical Behavioral Therapy for Addiction

The ultimate goal in dialectical behavior therapy for addiction is to aid patients in their efforts to build a life worth living. When DBT is successful, the patient learns to envision, articulate, pursue, and sustain goals that are independent of his or her history of out-of-control behavior, including substance abuse, and is better able to grapple with life’s ordinary problems.

The all-encompassing embrace of both acceptance and change in dialectical behavior therapy for addiction is consistent with the philosophical approach found in Twelve-Step programs, expressed in the Serenity Prayer: “God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.”

Like other behavioral approaches, DBT addresses the most detrimental to the least detrimental behaviors in that order. This is used to decrease behaviors that are imminently life-threatening (e.g., suicidal or homicidal); for substance-dependent individuals, substance abuse is considered the most important target within the category of behaviors that interfere with quality of life. Dialectical behavioral therapy for addiction targets include:

  • decreasing abuse of substances (both illicit drugs and legally prescribed drugs taken in a manner not prescribed);
  • alleviating physical discomfort associated with abstinence and/or withdrawal;
  • diminishing urges, cravings, and temptations to abuse;
  • avoiding people, places, and things associated with drug abuse, deleting the telephone numbers of drug contacts, getting a new phone number, and throwing away drug paraphernalia;
  • reducing behaviors that encourage drug abuse;
  • increasing reinforcement of healthy behaviors, such as making new friends, rekindling old friendships, pursuing social/vocational activities, and seeking environments that support abstinence

 

 

Sources:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov

www.wikipedia.org

Borderline Personality Disorder

Borderline Personality Disorder

Borderline personality disorder is a personality disorder that is categorized by unusual varying moods. The moods can affect the person’s ability to think and their relationships. Borderline personality disorder includes symptoms such as:

  • Impulsive behavior
  • Intense and unstable relationship
  • Unstable self-image
  • Feelings of abandonment

Someone with a borderline personality disorder often will either devalue themselves or put themselves on a pedestal. They will go back and forth between having a high positive self-image to heavy disappointment or dislike of themselves. It is very common for someone with borderline personality disorder to engage in self-harm and suicidal behavior.

The symptoms of borderline personality disorder are grouped into five main areas. These five areas of a borderline personality disorder are emotions, behavior, relationships, sense of self and cognition. These five areas of borderline personality disorder allow mental health professionals to more easily diagnose someone with it.

Emotions

People with borderline personality disorder feel emotions more easily and more deeply. It can take someone with a borderline personality disorder a long time to return to a normal state after an emotional experience. Whatever someone with a borderline personality disorder is feeling they feel it intensely. Someone with a borderline personality disorder will experience grief instead of sadness or shame instead of embarrassment.

Behavior

Someone with borderline personality disorder usually has a history of impulsive behaviors. For instance substance and alcohol abuse, eating disorder, unprotected sex or sex with multiple partners, and reckless driving. People with a borderline personality disorder act impulsively because it gives them relief from their emotional pain. Self-harming and self-injury is also very common in someone with a borderline personality disorder. Both of which are a response to feeling negative emotions which are experienced intensely.

Relationships

People with a borderline personality disorder are very sensitive to the way other people treat them. Their feelings about other people often change from positive to negative quickly. Someone with a borderline personality disorder will manipulate to feel nurtured somehow. Someone with a borderline personality disorder will also tend to be insecure, avoidant, ambivalent in their relationships.

Cognition

Because someone with a borderline personality disorder has such intense emotions they tend to have trouble focusing their attention on anything. It can be hard for someone with a borderline personality disorder to concentrate. Dissociation is very common in someone with a borderline personality disorder. Dissociation usually happens in response to a painful event or trigger that causes someone to recall the painful event.

The treatment of choice for borderline personality disorder is therapy. There are four treatments that are typically recommended and they are mentalization based treatment, transference focused therapy, dialectical behavior therapy and schema focused therapy. These therapies in combination with the right medication can be very effective in helping someone with a borderline personality disorder. People with borderline personality disorder usually do well with treatment and live fairly normal lives. Although this is not usually known due to the dramatic portrayal of people with borderline personality disorders in movies such as Girl Interrupted. The month of May is Borderline Personality Disorder Awareness Month.

Source: http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/error-page/displayErrorPage/NERRORID=65035940