As I have been thinking about my life, and evaluating my emotional health I am happy to realize that I have been living free from the co-dependency that plagued me in my 20’s and 30’s. I couldn’t see my own brokenness and certainly didn’t recognize the patterns of “idolatry” that were very normal to me. We all adapt to our “normal” and often life is too busy to get intimate with other families to see how they operate and see that there might be a different “normal”.
In my journey I enabled my husband’s brokenness by never letting him see how much he’d hurt me with his marital infidelities. I was so overtly aware of his set-up through sexual wounding that I didn’t want to “hurt” him more with my true feelings of anger and pain. I worked really hard at living in forgiveness and thought I was doing well, until one night I had a dream about wanting to murder him! I would either help him drive a car off a cliff or into an embankment
I had made my husband an idol
A friend around that time had said to me that I’d made my husband an idol – but until the dream I didn’t understand. As I processed the dream, I came to realize that I was impeding his healing journey with my dishonesty – NOT helping it! I knew I was catering to him because of his past, and not equipping him to fight because of my overt “mercy”. It really wasn’t mercy at all – but buried pain and anger locked down tight because of fear. That’s DENIAL and justifying!
Does this sound familiar? Does your world revolve around someone else’s feelings and reactions? Is there anyone you cater to? A parent, a friend, a child, a boyfriend? Sometimes we have to look at symptoms in our relationships to figure out what’s actually going on. Take a moment to answer these questions.
- Do you have trouble standing up for yourself if someone puts you down or shows disrespect?
- Do you feel compelled to share all you are feeling with someone to guarantee there won’t be a reaction or punishment?
- Do you have trouble saying no and enforcing that no? Even with your kids?
- Do you feel manipulated or controlled by another individual on a regular basis?
- Do you go silent when someone crosses your personal boundaries of touch? Or sharing?
- Do you apologize for everything and feel most things are your fault?
- Do you keep attracting the same kinds of relationships with patterns of abuse or neglect?
If you answered yes to 3 or more of these you are definitely struggling with co-dependencey and have some unhealthy boundaries. That’s the bad news!
The good news is:
You can learn to live differently!
Start by reading a good book like "Boundaries" or "The Way Forward Workbook" available on Kindle, or "How We Love". Next, ask the Holy Spirit to show you lies you believe about your identity like: not enough, or unloveable, or rejected. Once you are in touch with them, ask the Father for His perspective. This is very important because if you don’t value yourself and see yourself as God does, then others won’t either.
No matter what others have told you or the enemy has whispered to you in your heart:
YOU are CHOSEN by the King of Kings as a daughter - You MATTER!
This post was first seen at www.TheSingleMOMKC.org where Laurie serves as the Pastoral Director. You can read more about Laurie's work with The Single MOM KC by clicking here.