“This dance of Codependence is a dance of dysfunctional relationships – of relationships that do not work to meet our needs. That does not mean just romantic relationships, or family relationships, or even human relationships in general.
The fact that dysfunction exists in our romantic, family, and human relationships is a symptom of the dysfunction that exists in our relationship with life – with being human. It is a symptom of the dysfunction which exists in our relationships with ourselves as human beings.
And the dysfunction that exists in our relationship with ourselves is a symptom of Spiritual dis-ease, of not being in balance and harmony with the universe, of feeling disconnected from our Spiritual source.
That is why it is so important to enlarge our perspective. To look beyond the romantic relationship in which we are having problems. To look beyond the dysfunction that exists in our relationships with other people.
The more we enlarge our perspective, the closer we get to the cause instead of just dealing with the symptoms. For example, the more we look at the dysfunction in our relationship with ourselves as human beings the more we can understand the dysfunction in our romantic relationships.” – Quotes in this color are from Codependence: The Dance of Wounded Souls
One of the first steps to opening up to the possibility of have a healthy relationship is to start changing the dysfunctional attitudes and beliefs we learned in childhood. Our attitudes, beliefs, and definitions set up our expectations and perspectives which in turn dictate our emotional relationships. In order to change our relationship patterns we need to change the attitudes and beliefs so that we will stop expecting the magic of fairy tales in our romantic relationships.
You are not going to live happily-ever-after once you find your prince or princess. There is no happily-ever-after on this plane of existence. You may find your prince or princess but they will have issues to deal with. Relationships are something that needs to be worked on – not some magic wand that makes everybody happy.
A healthy romantic relationship is based on interdependence. Codependence and interdependence are two very different dynamics.
Codependence is about giving away power over our self-esteem. Taking our self-definition and self-worth from outside or external sources is dysfunctional because it causes us to give power over how we feel about ourselves to people and forces which we cannot control.
If my self-esteem is based on people, places, and things; money, property, and prestige; accomplishments, popularity, relationships; looks, talent, intelligence; then I am set up to be a victim. People will not always do what I want them to; property can be destroyed by an earthquake or flood or fire; money can disappear in a stock market crash or bad investment; looks change as I get older. Everything changes. All outside or external conditions are potentially or ultimately temporary.
We got programmed to look outside to fill a hole within us. We need to start to learn how to be loving to ourselves in order to be able to start being able to be loving in a healthy way in our relationships.
“In order to start being loving to ourselves we need to change our relationship with our self – and with all the wounded parts of our self. . . .
. . . . The purpose of the work is to change our ego-programming – to change our relationship with ourselves by changing our emotional/behavioral defense system into something that works to open us up to receive love, instead of sabotaging ourselves because of our deep belief that we don’t deserve love.
(I need to make the point here that Codependence and recovery are both multi-leveled, multi-dimensional phenomena. What we are trying to achieve is integration and balance on different levels. In regard to our relationship with ourselves this involves two major dimensions: the horizontal and the vertical. In this context the horizontal is about being human and relating to other humans and our environment. The vertical is Spiritual, about our relationship to a Higher Power, to the Universal Source. If we cannot conceive of a God/Goddess Force that loves us then it makes it virtually impossible to be loving to ourselves. So a Spiritual Awakening is absolutely vital to the process in my opinion. Changing our relationship with ourselves on the horizontal level is both a necessary element in, and possible because we are working on, integrating Spiritual Truth into our inner process.) – Learning to Love our self – Inner Child Healing / Codependence Recovery
That is why it is so important to get in touch with our Spiritual connection. To start realizing that we have worth because we are children of God. That we are all part of the Eternal ONENESS that is the God Force/Goddess Energy/Great Spirit. We are Spiritual beings having a human experience – our worth as beings is not dependent upon any outer or external condition. We are Unconditionally Loved and we always have been.
The more we can start owning the Truth of who we really are and integrating it into our relationship with ourselves, the more we can enjoy this human experience that we are having. Then we can start learning how to be interdependent – how to give power away in conscious, healthy ways – because our self-worth is no longer dependent on outside sources. When we are not unconsciously using the other person to fill the hole inside and gain feelings of self-worth, then we are capable of being healthier in relationship. When our self-worth is not at risk in the relationship then another person can only add to us, they have no power to diminish us.
Interdependence is about making allies, forming partnerships. It is about forming connections with other beings. Interdependence means that we give someone else some power over our welfare and our feelings.
Anytime we care about somebody or something we give away some power over our feelings. It is impossible to Love without giving away some power. When we choose to Love someone (or thing – a pet, a car, anything) we are giving them the power to make us happy – we cannot do that without also giving them the power to hurt us or cause us to feel angry or scared.
In order to live we need to be interdependent. We cannot participate in life without giving away some power over our feelings and our welfare. I am not talking here just about people. If we put money in a bank we are giving some power over our feelings and welfare to that bank. If we have a car we have a dependence on it and will have feelings if it something happens to it. If we live in society we have to be interdependent to some extent and give some power away. The key is to be conscious in our choices and own responsibility for the consequences.
The way to healthy interdependence is to be able to see things clearly – to see people, situations, life dynamics and most of all ourselves clearly. If we are not working on healing our childhood wounds and changing our childhood programming then we cannot begin to see ourselves clearly let alone anything else in life.
The disease of Codependence causes us to keep repeating patterns that are familiar. So we pick untrustworthy people to trust, undependable people to depend on, unavailable people to love. By healing our emotional wounds and changing our intellectual programming we can start to practice discernment in our choices so that we can change our patterns and learn to trust ourselves.
As we develop healthy self-esteem based on knowing that the Force is with us and Loves us, then we can consciously take the risk of Loving, of being interdependent, without buying into the belief that the behavior of others determines our self-worth. We will have feelings – we will get hurt, we will be scared, we will get angry – because those feelings are an unavoidable part of life. Feelings are a part of the human experience that we came here to learn about – they cannot be avoided. And trying to avoid them only causes us to miss out on the Joy and Love and happiness that can also be a part of the human experience.
By changing our intellectual paradigm – our attitudes, beliefs, and definitions – we can stop expecting life – and romantic love – to be something it is not. We can stop expecting relationships to be magic just because falling in love feels magical. We can start having a realistic view of relationships which will allow us to be responsible enough to do the work it takes to work through issues, to keep communication happening, to form a healthy interdependent partnership with another human being. It is in taking responsibility and working through issues that the True magic of emotional intimacy can flower. The sacred magic that is Love is worth the effort.
Two people consciously working together can be a very beautiful experience.” – Romantic Relationships ~ The Greatest Arena for Spiritual & Emotional Growth Chapter 9 Interdependent, not codependent
Romantic Relationships ~ The Greatest Arena for Spiritual & Emotional Growth
Codependent Dysfunctional Relationship Dynamics & Healthy Relationship Behavior
This book is also available in ebook form, but it is divided into 2 eBooks. Below is the Table of Contents. The first 20 Chapters are in eBook 1 – the second 20 Chapters are in eBook 2.
Table of Contents
Part 1 Codependent Relationship Dynamics ~ Dysfunctional Beliefs about Romance
Chapter 1 – Dysfunctional Definition of Love
Chapter 2 – Power Struggle
Chapter 3 – Inter-reacting & Blaming
Chapter 4 – Set up to Feel like Failures
Chapter 5 – Different Programming for Men & Women
Chapter 6 – Codependent & Counterdependent Behavior
Chapter 7 – Come Here, Go Away
Chapter 8 – Letting Go of Unavailable People
Part 2 Healthy Relationship Behavior ~ Partners in the Journey
Chapter 9 – Interdependent, not codependent
Chapter 10 – Communicationis Key
Chapter 11 – Emotional Honesty Necessary
Chapter 12 – Partners in the Journey
Chapter 13 – Healthy Joyous Sexuality
Chapter 14 – Romantic Love as a Concept
Chapter 15 – Falling in love as a choice
Chapter 16 – A Valentine’s Day Prayer
Chapter 17 – Pay Attention and Communicate
Chapter 18 – Foundation for Healthy Romantic Relationships
Chapter 19 – Taking self worth out of the equation in Romantic Relationships
Chapter 20 – Meditation on Romantic Commitment
Part 3 Deeper Within (emotionally) & Further Out (metaphysically) ~ From Fear of Intimacy to Twin Souls
Chapter 21 – Uncover, Discover, Recover
Chapter 22 – Emotional Intimacy = in to me see
Chapter 23 – Men and Women are from the same planet
Chapter 24 – The Maiden and the Horndog
Chapter 25 – Sexuality Abuse – the legacy of shame based culture
Chapter 26 – Old tapes / traditional beliefs and gender roles for men and women
Chapter 27 – Monogamy – A Spiritual Teachers Perspective
Chapter 28 – Fear of Intimacy – the wounded heart of codependency
Chapter 29 – Grief, Love, & Fear of Intimacy
Chapter 30 – The True Nature of Love 1, what Love is not
Chapter 31 – The True Nature of Love 2, Love as Freedom
Chapter 32 – The True Nature of Love 3, Love as a Vibrational Frequency
Chapter 33 – The True Nature of Love 4, Energetic Clarity
Chapter 34 – The True Nature of Love 5, Twin Souls, Souls Mates, and Kindred Spirits
Chapter 35 – Energetic Attraction – emotional familiarity or Karmic connection?
Chapter 36 – Fear of Intimacy – Relationship Phobia
Chapter 37 – Codependent Defenses ~ The Gatekeeper
Chapter 38 – Deprivation issues drive relationship addiction behavior
Chapter 39 – My personal Journey through my Terror of Intimacy
Chapter 40 – Romantic Relationships and Valentine’s Day 2010