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What Is Codependency?

How we can distinguish between codependency, which is unhealthy to codependents and their dependents, and mature faith, which is healthy.

“In its broadest sense, codependency can be defined as an addiction to people, behaviors, or things. Co-dependency is the fallacy of trying to control interior feelings by controlling people, things, and events on the outside. To the codependent, control or lack of it is central to every aspect of life.

Codependency says:

  • I have little or no value

  • Other persons and situations have all the value

  • I must please other people regardless of the cost to my person or my values

  • I am to place myself to be used by others without protest

  • I must give myself away

  • If I claim any rights for myself, I am selfish

The following inventory can help you in the recognition process as you seek to determine whether codependency tendencies are reaching a destructive level in your life.

  • I assume responsibility for others feelings and behaviors

  • I feel guilty about others feelings and behaviors

  • I have difficulty identifying what I am feeling

  • I have difficulty expressing feelings

  • I am afraid of my anger, yet sometimes erupt in a rage

  • I worry about how others may respond to my feelings, opinions, and behavior

  • I have difficulty making decisions

  • I am afraid of being hurt and/or rejected by others

  • I minimize, alter or deny how I truly feel

  • I am very sensitive to how others are feeling and feel the same

  • I am afraid to express differing opinions for feeling

  • I value others opinions and feelings more than my own

  • I put other people’s needs and desires before mine

  • I am embarrassed to receive recognition and praise, or gifts

  • I judge everything I think, say, or do harshly, as never “good enough”

  • I am perfectionistic

  • I am extremely loyal, remaining in harmful situations too long

  • I do not ask others to meet my needs or desires

  • I do not perceive myself as a loveable and worthwhile person

  • I compromise my own values and integrity to avoid rejection or other’s anger

Codependency says

"I have little or no value"

If you can identify with any of these tendencies,  you'd benefit from joining our Codependency Small Group, every Wednesday from 7:30-8:15 pm.  

There is FREEDOM, HOPE, AND DELIVERANCE waiting for you!


To the codependent, control or lack of it is central to every aspect of life.

Another component of codependency is called enabling.

Enabling is defined as reacting to a person in such a way to shield him or her from experiencing the full impact of the harmful consequences of behavior. Enabling behavior differs from helping in that it permits or allows the person to be irresponsible.

  • PROTECTION - from natural consequences of behavior

  • KEEPING SECRETS - about behavior from others in order to keep the peace

  • MAKING EXCUSES for the behavior - School, friends, legal authorities, work, family members

  • BAILING OUT of trouble - Debts, fixing tickets, paying lawyers, providing jobs

  • BLAMING OTHERS FOR DEPENDENT PERSON'SBEHAVIOR - Friends, teachers, employers, family, self

  • SEEING THE PROBLEM AS THE RESULT OF SOMETHING ELSE - Shyness, adolescence, loneliness, child, broken home

  • AVOIDING the chemically dependent person in order to keep peace - Out-of-sight, out-of-mind


  • ATTEMPTING TO CONTROL - Planning activities, choosing friends, getting jobs

  • MAKING THREATS - that have no follow through or consistency

  • TAKING CARE OF the chemically dependent person - Doing what he/she should be expected to for themselves

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