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Codependence Part 1

          August, 2018

Quote of the month  

"Your mind is a powerful thing. When you fill 
it with 
positive thoughts, your life will 
start to change." 

by unknown
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Masters Degree - Applied Psychology from Seton Hall University


Post-Masters Degree-Marriage and Family Therapy from Seton Hall University


Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist


Private Practice 

since 2008


Married 29 years


Mother of 2 young adult daughters 


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Codependence is one of those words that is thrown around these days like Narcissism, ADD and ADHD. We pretend to know what those words mean but do we really? In an attempt to help my readers become more clear on what codependence is, I am taking excerpts from an excellent, easy to read, well-known book on the topic. I couldn't explain it better myself, so I give credit to the author, Melody Beattie and phrasing its concepts so eloquently. This will be a 2-part or maybe even a 3-part newsletter, as there is so much valuable information on the subject and one that is very important to the large majority of the population that either is codependent themselves to some degree, or is in a close relationship with someone who is.

Enjoy this information and please, if you feel the need to know more, consider getting your hands on Codependent No More: How to Stop Controlling Others and Start Caring for Yourself by Melody Beattie. There are many books on the topic, but I very much like the "active" approach of this book, where there is an activity to do after each chapter. Many books give you the information, but they don't tell you what to do with it. This book gives you excellent information and then provides activities to help you absorb that information and put it into everyday use.

I will put a link to the book on the Recommended Books page of my website, for those who may be interested.

Please pass along to family and friends who may be interested in the monthly content of this newsletter. Creating a web of knowledge helps those in need.
Maryellen Dabal, MA, LMFT
305 Miron Drive 
Southlake, TX 76092
Missed previous newsletters??
Go to www.dabalmft.com.  Click on the newsletters link at the bottom of the home page. Enjoy.....
From The Positive Perspective......    
From  Codependent No More pg 36: "A codependent person is one who has let another person's behavior affect him or her, and who is obsessed with controlling that person's behavior."

"The heart of the definition and recovery lies not in the other person - no matter how much we believe it does. It lies in ourselves, in the ways we have let other people's behavior affect us and in the ways we try to affect them: the obsession, the controlling, the obsessive "helping," care taking, low self-worth .... that results in abandonment of self, communication problems, intimacy problems, and an ongoing whirlwind trip through the five-stage grief process."

"Co-dependents want and need sick people around them to be happy in an unhealthy way."

Pg 41 "Having these problems does not mean we're bad, defective or inferior." "Wherever we learned to do these things, most of us learned our lessons well."

Pg 42 "We can learn to do things differently. We can change. I think most people want to be healthy and live the best lives they can. But many of us don't know it's okay to do things differently."   

"The first step toward change is awareness. The second is acceptance."
What the above information is trying to say is that we need to look inward if we feel we have an unhealthy relationship with others (or others are giving us those hints) where their happiness and feelings are more important than our own. If we get upset because others do not recognize all that we do for them and we get consumed with being angry over it and not being productive and settling into a depression because of that, we possess codependent characteristics. We have options of what to do with those situations where we can take care of ourselves, take back control over our own lives and give ourselves permission to distance from people who are not healthy for us. It is a gift that we can give ourselves. We do not want to swing in the other direction and ONLY care about our feelings though, but we need to find a balance between what we do for others and what we do for ourselves.
I encourage you to think about the above information and does it apply to you possibly or a close friend or relative? If so, with practice, these tendencies can be worked on and improved with AWARENESS and ACCEPTANCE as the first two steps.
Join me next month with more information on this topic. Thank you for your continued loyalty and support of this newsletter.
Until next time.....look at life and your inspirations 
From The Positive Perspective.

Stay well.
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I welcome feedback regarding the newsletter or questions about my practice.  I can be reached at maryellen@dabalmft.com .  I cannot, however, give advice through email. For more information on my practice please visit my website: www.dabalmft.com

I wish you well...