Have you wondered if you might be co-dependent?

“Co-dependency can be defined as the tendency to put others needs before your own. You accommodate to others to such a degree that you tend to discount or ignore your own feelings, desires and basic needs. Your self-esteem depends largely on how well you please, take care of and/or solve problems for someone else, or many others.” Dr. Edmund Bourne

Now, as you read that I’m sure quite a few things come to your thoughts. I pray this will clarify things for you.

Some people “choose” a life of co-dependency.

The Pope, Mother Theresa, Missionaries, the Apostle Paul, and so on.. These people choose a life that puts others needs before their own. This is healthy as long as they remember to take breaks to refresh and refuel (though I’m not sure Mother Theresa ever did that).

Then there are those who find their identity in the ones they love. This creates a spirit of co-dependency. In case your wondering; no, this is Not Healthy!!

Dr. Bourne has 10 questions, a test, you can ask your self to see if you are co-dependent.

1. If someone important to me expects me to do something, I should do it.

2. I should not be irritable or unpleasant.

3. I shouldn’t do anything to make others angry at me.

4. I should keep people I love happy.

5. It’s usually my fault if someone I care about is upset with me.

6. I obtain self-esteem out of helping others solve their problems.

7. I tend to overextend myself in taking care of others.

8. If necessary, I put my own values or needs aside in order to preserve my relationship with my significant other.

9. I have a hard time receiving things from others.

10. Fear of someone else’s anger has a lot of influence on what I say or do.”

Do you see your self in any of these? I do and have.. It’s scary isn’t it, to realize that all of us have at least one of these. One of my professors in collage said that the majority of people are dealing with at lest 3 of these 10 questions.

I can’t help but think about how tired people are when they are trying to make everyone happy around them.

Instead of finding our identity in others, we should look to find our identity in Christ.

Ephesians 1:4 4 “Just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love,”

Colossians 3:3 “For you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God.”

2 Timothy 1:7 “For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.”

All scripture is NKJV

I am curious to know if you have found yourselves within the questions. Mine are 5, 7, and 9… Each of these caused me to see things within me that I didn’t realize I was dealing with. This knowledge opened my eyes and started the road for me to have freedom in these areas.

Doing for others is great gift that we can give. But doing it because of an unhealthy thought processes about ourselves is not what God wants for us or how He is calling us to serve.

Our feelings are valid when we are upset with others, and we need to know that. On the other hand, we also need to check our selves to see where we are wrong in the situation, then take responsibility for these areas with God and the person if the situation calls for it. Doing so creates a healthy mind, soul and spirit.

When your thoughts and self esteem are healthy, your responses to others will be as well. You will find that you have more joy in your life and at peace.

A word of caution: co-dependency creates rich soil for depression. 60 % of people with co-dependency are also dealing with depression.

If this describes you, please contact your pastor or someone you trust to counsel you. Co-dependency and depression is two of satan’s tools to kill, steal, and destroy you, your family, and your marriage!

Cherie ♥