Codependency is a term that often comes up in consultations where people with alcohol addiction problems and their families are treated. Specifically, we find codependency when we inquire about what the addict’s relationship is like.
Alcoholism is not something that only affects the addict, but also the family, how family relationships are progressively deteriorating, and the process that the family needs to carry out to realize and accept the problem. The family must change their day-to-day and their ways of acting and behaving, in order to live together and endure the new changes that have been taking place because of addiction. In that sense, it could be said that codependency is another step that is taken in that process of adaptation to the problem by the family, in this case, given by the couple.
What is Codependency?
Codependency is a way of relating to the person suffering from addiction, in which everything seems to revolve around it. The complicated circumstances in which the family must live, give rise to multiple attempts by the couple to resolve the situation. Not knowing what to do, how to deal with day-to-day problems, codependent couples develop an excessive concern for the addict and his problem.
This translates into a great need for control towards the other person. Control over the other person is carried out by exercising extreme vigilance towards the addict, wanting to know at all times where he is or what he is doing. In addition, the codependent will make multiple attempts to solve the situations and problems derived from consumption, always putting the couple above himself.
Why Does This Happen?
The codependent person experiences a complex web of symptoms that are directly related to their relationship with the addicted person. These are very deep feelings of worthlessness, low self-esteem, disability, negative self-image… The person has a lousy assessment of himself, coming to think that he does not deserve the affection of others. The fear of not being loved or losing the other person completely takes over the couple. Therefore, he begins to adopt an attitude of submission and needs to please the other person, to take care of him.
In the life of the codependent, everything revolves around the addicted person, it seems as if one’s happiness depends on the state of the other. Therefore, the codependent person totally forgets about himself to focus on achieving the well-being of the other person and, above all, on avoiding a new episode of consumption.
How Does Codependency Affect Alcoholism?
If family members are flooded by negative emotions, it will be very difficult for them to offer quality help to the alcoholic person. The codependent person will try to help the recovery of the addict, not knowing that his way of helping does nothing more than push alcohol to a new episode of consumption. This is because codependents tend to show a tendency to please the alcoholic, which prevents that. In many cases, he has to face the negative consequences of his addiction. If the codependent person is solving all the problems that arise in the life of the alcoholic, in reality, he will be detracting from the seriousness of the problem of consumption.
What Can Be Done?
What can be done when there is a relationship of codependency? Without a doubt, codependency is another part of alcoholism that affects the whole family. In addition to helping to maintain addiction, it should not be forgotten that if there are children in the family, the relationship models they will be learning will be precisely those.
Seek Professional Help
Therefore, as always, families are recommended to put themselves in the hands of professionals specialized in the treatment of addictions and family therapy. Although the treatment is complex, without a doubt the benefits obtained are important, both for the alcoholic and for the couple, as well as for the whole family. For more information, get it from here.