Understanding Emotional Codependency and How to Deal with It
Emotional codependency is a behavior where a person believes they need someone else in their life to survive. This belief, unfortunately, is misinterpreted as love. Clinical psychologist Rosa María Fernández notes that this condition is not exclusive to certain individuals but can happen to anyone at any given time.
Fernández explains that emotional codependency arises from a weak sense of self-esteem. The person believes that they need the other person to feel loved, important, or simply to exist. It is this belief that results in a mental disability whereby the person constantly needs the other person for validation.
The codependent person becomes obsessively attached to their partner and starts to idealize them. The person loses their sense of identity, and their partner becomes the center of their lives. This results in an unhealthy attachment in which the dependent person is glued to their phone, waiting for a response that will validate their existence.
The dependent person begins to associate their self-worth with the other person, and if they leave, the dependent person feels unworthy and unloved. This negative self-talk can lead to a cycle where the codependent person becomes clingier, manipulative, and even shows loving voracity.
According to Fernández, people who suffer from emotional codependency tend to stick to individuals who do not want a commitment or have a tendency to play with the feelings of others. They repeat the habit with different partners and tend to attract toxic relationships.
To overcome emotional codependency, the dependent person must understand that it is not the other person’s fault but their own shortcomings. They must confront themselves and realize that they are worth it as an individual. To change their behavior, the codependent person must identify their negative self-talk and replace it with positive affirmations.
Activities such as taking some time for themselves can help the person get back to neglected aspects of their life. Seeking help from professionals such as therapists can also help them address their emotional codependency before their self-esteem takes a worse beating.
In conclusion, emotional codependency can happen to anyone, but it is vital to recognize it and take steps to overcome it. The journey to self-love and emotional independence may be challenging, but it is worth the effort.