What it means to be in a co-dependent relationship
If you find yourself constantly giving up what you want and need to please your partner or cover up for their bad behaviours, that could be a warning sign that you are in a co-dependent relationship, according to the counselling blog Harley Therapy. Co-dependency is an extreme form of sacrificing one’s well-being for someone else.
You cover up your partner’s alcoholism or drug use
If someone has an addiction to alcohol, drugs, or anything else that is harmful to their health, you may feel like you are doing them a favour by helping them out of a jam – but that’s co-dependency, warn the experts at Mental Health America. For example, if someone misses work because they went on a bender the night before, you might feel you’re helping by lying to their boss when they call. However, if you help an addict avoid facing consequences of that behaviour, you’re just enabling the addiction.
You do more than your fair share in the relationship
In a co-dependent relationship, one partner tends to do a lot more of the work than the other partner, writes Gordon. That may be because one partner does not feel capable of doing more, or it can be because the partner is manipulative or selfish, preferring not to put in the same amount of work. Whatever the situation may be, it’s not sustainable for one partner to do the vast majority of the work.