dysfunctional symptoms of codependency

Distorted Symptoms of a Codependent- Nonexistent Spirituality

Teri and Tamara have described what having the symptoms of Negative Control and Resentment can create in our lives as Codependents. Today I will discuss how having a Distorted or even Nonexistent Spiritual life can create issues as well. Distorted or Nonexistent Sprirituality

People who struggle with Codependency sometimes struggle with experiencing a connection to a power greater than self. This can be for many different reasons. But we often see it transpire when a child feels imperfect and doesn't meet their parents expectations. Children are naturally imperfect and are going to make mistakes. However, if a parent doesn't allow room for imperfection, the child will do one of two extremes- either they will become rebellious (or "bad" in their mind) or become a perfectionist (or "good" in their mind). They will use this to survive the unreasonable expectation of being perfect.

In adulthood, this usually translates to a person having trouble owning and expressing what their beliefs of imperfection are and ultimately, not allowing themselves to feel the need to be perfect. The Codependent really does not believe they are allowed to make mistakes. And when they do, they feel horrible shame about it. Oftentimes, and more times than not, this is also projected onto their children. The children then learn they are not allowed to be imperfect which starts the cycle all over with another generation.

All of this than gets transcribed into: "I can't get close to God or my Higher Power because I will never be good enough or perfect enough." This couldn't be further from the truth. God is all about accepting us right where we are. Higher Powers are all about acceptance as well. We do not come WHEN we are perfect. We come with our imperfections and work towards a better life.

Another great book recommendation to help with Codependency and Spirituality is "Love is a Choice" by Hemfelt, Minirth, and Meier. It is a great book to help integrate the two.

Tomorrow Alexa will help us with 2 more Symptoms. Thank you for reading! I hope you have a great week!

Written by Natalie Chandler

Natalie Chandler, MA, LMHC is a therapist at Imagine Hope Counseling Group. Natalie enjoys doing marriage counseling, individual counseling, and couples counseling.  We also specialize in family counseling, child, and adolescent counseling. Imagine Hope serves the Indianapolis area including the surrounding areas of Carmel, Fishers, Noblesville, Westfield, and Zionsville.

Distorted Symptoms of a Codependent- Resentment

Teri did a great job yesterday describing Codependency. If you find yourself relating to our blog this week, we encourage you to get more information on Codependency. Two resources are Codependent No More by Melody Beattie or Facing Codependency by Pia Mellody. Resentment

One aspect of codependents is the need to punish others in their life for the wrongs they perceive have been done to them. When growing up, it's common for children to feel vulnerable in a healthy way. However, people who grow up codependent most likely grew up feeling either too vulnerable (maybe to the point of feeling out of control) or feeling invulnerable (immune to being attacked).

As this person grows up, it will be hard for them to set boundaries. Either boundaries for this person will be very fluid, meaning they will be almost non-existent which allows others to get too close. Or, the boundaries will be very firm and strict, hardly allowing anyone to get close at all. With either scenario, resentment will be the outcome. With non-existent boundaries, a person will feel taken advantage of and resentment will be an end result. With firm and strict boundaries, a person will feel isolated and lonely, leading to resentment as well. As a parent, the codependent will have a hard time respecting the boundaries of their children. Thus possibly continuing the cycle into another generation.

If you find yourself relating to Resentment, please realize there is a middle ground. You can have boundaries and be vulnerable at the same time. It doesn't have to be one or the other. Instead of focusing on what others are doing wrong, try to communicate what you need. Thank you for reading, please check back in for more dysfunctional symptoms of codependency this week.

Written by: Tamara Wilhelm MA, LMHC

*Tamara enjoys doing marriage counseling, individual counseling, & couples counseling  at Imagine Hope. We also specialize in family counseling, child & adolescent counseling. Imagine Hope serves the Indianapolis area, including the surrounding areas of Carmel, Noblesville, Zionsville, Westfield & Fishers.

Distorted Symptoms of a Codependent-Nonexistent Spirituality

Teri and Tamara have described what having the symptoms of Negative Control and Resentment can create in our lives as Codependents. Today I will discuss how having a Distorted or even Nonexistent Spiritual life can create issues as well. Distorted or Nonexistent Sprirituality

People who struggle with Codependency sometimes struggle with experiencing a connection to a power greater than self. This can be for many different reasons. But we often see it transpire when a child feels imperfect and doesn't meet their parents expectations. Children are naturally imperfect and are going to make mistakes. However, if a parent doesn't allow room for imperfection, the child will do one of two extremes- either they will become rebellious (or "bad" in their mind) or become a perfectionist (or "good" in their mind). They will use this to survive the unreasonable expectation of being perfect.

In adulthood, this usually translates to a person having trouble owning and expressing what their beliefs of imperfection are and ultimately, not allowing themselves to feel the need to be perfect. The Codependent really does not believe they are allowed to make mistakes. And when they do, they feel horrible shame about it. Oftentimes, and more times than not, this is also projected onto their children. The children then learn they are not allowed to be imperfect which starts the cycle all over with another generation.

All of this than gets transcribed into: "I can't get close to God or my Higher Power because I will never be good enough or perfect enough." This couldn't be further from the truth. God is all about accepting us right where we are. Higher Powers are all about acceptance as well. We do not come WHEN we are perfect. We come with our imperfections and work towards a better life.

Another great book recommendation to help with Codependency and Spirituality is "Love is a Choice" by Hemfelt, Minirth, and Meier. It is a great book to help integrate the two.

Tomorrow Joleen will help us with 2 more Symptoms. Thank you for reading! I hope you have a great week!

Written by Natalie Chandler

Natalie Chandler, MA, LMHC is a therapist at Imagine Hope Counseling Group. Natalie enjoys doing marriage counseling, individual counseling, and couples counseling.  We also specialize in family counseling, child, and adolescent counseling. Imagine Hope serves the Indianapolis area including the surrounding areas of Carmel, Fishers, Noblesville, Westfield, and Zionsville.