“The only person you can change now or ever is yourself. Your business controls only you.” ~ Melody Beatty
In 2019, I decided to quit my marriage and start over. My relationship with my ex-husband caused deep pain and months of suffering, but I was happy with my decision.
I felt better in no time. I developed a healthy routine, exercised regularly, started meditation every day, spent time in nature, maintained a healthy and deep connection with people, and tried to focus positively.
For several months it seemed to work. Until I met a man and got emotionally involved with him. At that time, I realized that I was living really negatively.
The moment I started dating and meeting someone more intimately, my life felt unmanageable. Suddenly, I abandoned my daily life and spent days crazy about what this person was doing or why they took 13 minutes to respond to my message. I was absorbed in it and wondered, “What happened to me?”
I threw a tantram quickly to create more dramas and battles. In some twisted and weird way, it felt exciting. I had something to solve and take care of. I was eating extreme lows and highs with the people I dated.
As you can see on the famous laundry list, as an adult kid with alcoholism, I didn’t understand what it meant to be crazy about excitement. I will do it now.
The need to control others, the fear of being abandoned, the obsession with people’s feelings, and my desire to solve their problems while ignoring me have caused intolerable pain that can no longer be ignored. ..
Everything broke down this year. I met someone who again caused my codependence and challenged my traumatic wounds. Immediately after we started talking, I started to get hooked again. Until the end of the relationship, constant anxiety, fear of loss, and a desire to control and manipulate the situation surfaced. Another failed relationship attempt.
What followed was intolerable emotional pain. I’ve never been so lost in my life. I couldn’t function properly, I couldn’t eat, I couldn’t work, and I was paralyzed by despair, despair, and loneliness.
Meanwhile, somewhere between my pain and not being able to see my worth, I broke through.
For the first time, I was forced to feel my emotions. Sometimes I felt cruel, but at least I felt it. The pain cracked my heart and I couldn’t paralyze it anymore. Anger, worthlessness, guilt, shame, fear of loss, pain that I find difficult to love, all poured out with all my might.
Who thought that a broken heart, or at least what I perceived as a broken heart, would reveal my codependence, leading to emotional healing and more credibility?
For the next few months, I went home and lay in the fetal position on the floor in the middle of the bedroom to prepare for the upcoming emotional outburst. I processed and released my emotions, but never came back.
I will breathe hard for days and weeks and cry uncontrollably. I cried at work, when I was choosing an avocado at the store, when I was asleep, or when I was watching a TikTok video. It didn’t matter. For the first time in my life, I felt my feelings and couldn’t push them away.
To be honest, I wasn’t sure what was going on. There was no logical explanation for this emotional roller coaster until I talked to my good friend Gaia. She mentioned the book she was reading, No more codependence, And I suggested checking it out.
I never thought I was co-dependent. By definition, I was the opposite. I had an apartment, paid an invoice, lived alone, worked while building a business, and took care of me.
But I decided to try it and read it. What followed was Epiphany and Epiphany after some A-ha moments. I began to understand why I was obsessed with intimate relationships and their potential. I began to see how the pain from codependence made it possible to release me.
When I was sitting in a studio apartment thinking about everything I learned and understood about co-dependency, I knew that if I didn’t stop working, this would make a big difference in my life.
Living with a drug addict becomes a control freak with an unhealthy survival mechanism. Codependence is one of them. The only way to change is to face the truth and be willing to commit to deep inner healing.
So the question was, “What is the next best step I can take to heal and recover now?”
At first, I had to take personal inventory and be honest with myself. Who am I? What are my toxic features and when does my co-dependency intervene? When do you operate a person? Am I trying to solve people’s problems to increase my value and prove my value? How can I stop it and rely on myself for approval and verification?
I remember the day my mom called me to let me know that my dog Aida died suddenly. Shortly before her phone call, I experienced one of my emotional recurrences and chose to fight the person I was meeting at that time. Then I used this disturbing news and my sadness as a tool for manipulating others. The victim’s façade I wore made them forget about my toxic behavior and instead felt sorry for me. what can I say? Operation in the best condition.
To be honest, it wasn’t easy to admit to myself that I manipulated people, that I was emotionally dependent on them and wanted to control them. This wasn’t the type of resume I wanted to show, but at least it was real.
I stood in my credibility, and it felt incredible.
Once you realize your actions, it’s time to forgive.
The tricky part of growth and healing is that once you become aware of your shortcomings or trauma-jamming techniques, you can easily move from practical awareness to self-judgment.
So I had to forgive, forgive, and forgive a little more. Therefore, I incorporate forgiveness into my meditation practice. I couldn’t understand how guilty I was until I sat down to practice forgiveness through meditation for the first time.
I had to pause the recording after closing my eyes and yelling “forgive me”. My emotions have overflowed. I felt like I was holding my breath, and after years of putting things in, I finally exhaled. Guilt and shame washed me away and I began to release them.
I finally took a break and showed acceptance and empathy instead of harsh judgment and criticism.
One of the most common patterns of co-dependent people is that we always feel guilty and not enough. The only way to overcome this madness is to use compassion and understanding of what we have done or who we believe to be. It’s about empathizing with our past and being aware of what happened to us and the impact it had.
No one is born to operate or control. It’s not who we are. That is who we will be as a survival mechanism. We adopt these toxic properties until we look in the mirror, admit mistakes, and have the courage to break the pattern. And the only way is through self-forgiveness.
I started working on a 12-step program for co-dependents. I also learned that recovery from codependence is a journey, not a destination. Healing co-dependence is about self-control, constant self-care, separation practices, surrender, and the development of a healthy relationship with power.
Recovery is the only way to stop pain, as we learned from Melody Beattie, the author of many books on co-dependency.
Growing up in homes with people who are dependent on chemicals or where safety and proper upbringing are not provided can lead to an unhealthy relationship with power as a coping mechanism. You might believe it’s okay if you can control and anticipate everything and fix people’s problems. You will be in control. You will be loved and will be enough.
But you are the only one who has full control. Whenever you try to control things or people, you will experience pain when they do not meet your expectations. As you may know, people do what they want, and many situations don’t work as we imagine.
One of the biggest lessons I’ve learned this year is to look in the mirror and find my strength. Stopping pain is practicing separation, letting go, working on my recovery to overcome the fear of loss and abandonment, and giving myself as much love as I can.
The need for control often leads to suffering despair, but practicing separation and caring for oneself brings peace and allows healing.
Today, I confidently say, “I am co-dependent.”
I know that in order to live healthier, I must remain sincere in my recovery. You can win or you can fail. Over time, you will lose less and win more. Practice is included. I keep in mind the emotional and psychological recurrences that accompany the process. I know I have a hard time getting into my old pattern and then getting back on track.
But I know I have the power to make different choices. When things seem to fall apart on the outside, it’s time to get inside, feel, process, and forgive. That is my new way of life. It challenges and triggers the wounds I need to heal, but it also gives me hope to believe that those good things can happen.