How are your relationships? Business? Personal? Family? Friendships? Romantic? Yourself? Any issues? Any recurring patterns? The first reaction is to blame it on the other party. It's easier to see the faults in others than in ourselves. Though relationships take two to tango. We must have had something to do with it. They say most of our problems are of our own making. So how do we honestly look at our part in our relationships and take responsibility for them so we can change and improve all of our relationships?


100% of relationships have some level of dysfunction. Some more than others. That's because none of us were raised in the Beaver Cleaver family. If we didn't get all of our needs met as children, we were abused. This abuse leads to codependency. There are many aspects of codependency. Though codependency is focusing outside of our self to meet our needs instead of meeting our own needs. John Bradshaw says codependency is people addiction. Pia Mellody says codependency is emotional immaturity. We're unable to stand on our own two feet and need to rely on others. There are many ways that we do this. Because of an insecure childhood, we might try to control others. If we were abandoned as children, we might fear abandonment  and people please others. If we were shamed or criticized as children, we might fear other's criticism and anger and avoid  confrontation and standing up for our self. If we were blamed as children, we might learn to blame others. If we weren't esteemed as children, we might have low self-esteem as adults, letting others treat us poorly, treating ourselves poorly or treating others poorly. If there weren't boundaries growing up, we don't have boundaries as adults, letting others offend us or offending others. If we were neglected as children, we might be too needy of others. If we were enmeshed as children, we might feel smothered by others and push them away. If we were overly responsible as a child, we might feel overly responsible to take care of others, caretaking, rescuing and enabling them. As you can see, how we were treated as children affects how we relate to others as adults affecting all of our relationships. All of these actions are abusive, dishonest, manipulative, controlling and avoiding. We're also abandoning our self, focusing on others and their feelings and neglecting our own. This usually leads to resentment and passive, aggressiveness. So how do we change?


There are many ways to change. Pia Mellody says we need to get our history straight. John Lee says we need to grow up. Counseling addresses our history, how if infected us then and how it continues to affect us today. 12 step programs like CODA, Codependents Anonymous, help us recover from codependency, and ACA, Adult Children of Alcoholics and Dysfunctional Families, help us recover from our childhood abuse. In ACA, we learn to reparent ourselves and give ourselves what we didn't get from others. We learn to stand on our own two feet and be responsible for our self and take care of our self so we don't need others to take of us. We also let others be responsible for themselves and take care of themselves. In CODA, we learn to esteem ourselves through affirmations.  We learn to set boundaries, protecting our self and not offending others. Our relationships become more loving and honest.


Do any of your relationships have problems? Are there recurring patterns? Are you sabotaging your relationships? Are you responsible for your part? Are you doing what you need to do to change? Why not? Don't you want better relationships? It starts with you being a better person. There's many things you can do. All of your relationships will improve, starting with the most important relationship with yourself. And if a relationship doesn't improve, you can chose not to be in it. Here's wishing you better relationships. Let me know if there is anything I can do to help.







Please enter the word you see in the image below:

Remember my personal information

Notify me of follow-up comments?