20 Question Quiz: Am I a Codependent?

Maybe you're not sure if you're co-dependent or not. Taking a codependency quiz can help you understand if you are.

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Codependent Quiz Information

People often wonder, am I a codependent? Codependency is a term that you may hear a lot, but you're not quite sure what it means. Codependency does not benefit you at all. In fact, it can make your life so much more stressful than it should be. If you're codependent, it's important for you to know.

What is Codependency?

Codependency is actually a learned behavior. It's often passed down from one generation to the next, so that means it runs in families. When you are codependent, you have a behavioral and emotional condition that greatly affects you. It can impact your ability to have a mutually satisfying relationship that's healthy.

Sometimes this condition is known as having a relationship addiction. This is because codependent individuals will often form one-sided relationships. These connections are frequently abusive and can become emotional destructive. You learn this behavior by observing it in other people; usually family members.

It's typical for this condition to exist among people who are addicted to drugs or alcohol. Originally, it was a term that was used to describe people in relationships with addicted people. The same can be said about some relationships involving people who are mentally ill or with chronic medical conditions. We now know that it's an appropriate definition of anyone who is involved in a dysfunctional family.

Signs That I'm in a Codependent Relationship

When you are codependent, you are focused on controlling, maintaining and nurturing undesirable behaviors in relationships. A classic example of this would be a wife who constantly enables her drug addicted husband. Some experts believe that both sides are responsible for the unhealthy behaviors. This is because one individual remains focused on what the other person does.

For instance, in the example given above, the wife's self-esteem will depend on how the addict feels. She may not feel good about herself unless he is happy, and that means enabling the addiction. As a result, the addiction is reinforced and even encouraged to continue.

There are several signs of codependency that you can look for in your own relationships. These include:

  • Only feeling a sense of purpose when you've made excessive sacrifices to care for someone else's needs.
  • Finding it impossible to say no when another person is making constant demands on you.
  • Covering for another person when they get into trouble with the law.
  • Frequently worrying about what other people think of you.
  • Feeling as though your relationship has you trapped.
  • Remaining silent because you want to avoid arguments and you don't want to rock the boat.
  • Feeling that you're not satisfied with your life outside of a specific person.
  • Staying with a partner even when you can easily recognize unhealthy behaviors.
  • Offering support to another person even though it's causing you physical or mental anguish.

People who are codependent typically experience anxiety more than anything else. Their relationships will be completely centered around two specific things. They'll either be trying to change their partner, or trying to conform to their wishes. It's actually a pretty scary place to be.

How to Deal With Someone Who is Codependent

If you've found yourself in a relationship with someone who is codependent, it can be difficult. You might find yourself getting frustrated frequently, and you may not know how to handle it.

For the moment, let's assume that there's no reason for codependent behavior within your relationship. If that's the case, there are healthy ways that you can offer support to your partner.

  • Work to Understand the Condition - This might be a concept that's completely foreign to you. If you care about the individual, you should try your best to understand them. It may be hard for your partner to be honest with you. They may suffer from low self-esteem and it can take time to change that.
  • Encourage Assertiveness - It might drive you crazy that your partner constantly gives in when you have a disagreement. In fact, you may even begin to feel a bit bored with the relationship. You should encourage your partner to speak out about their thoughts. Ask for their viewpoints, and don't become angry when they do. This will only cause more problems.
  • Take Time Apart - You don't need to be together all the time. This is something that your partner will get used to, but it will take time. Spending time apart will reinforce the fact that your partner can have their own life. If you're together too much, this will reinforce the control they want to have over you. This is something you want to avoid.
  • Encourage Counseling - The behaviors that your partner has learned probably stem from deeper issues from their past. It's not easy to get over these problems on one's own. A professional is most likely better suited to handle them than you are. You can do your part to be supportive. However, therapy is the best solution in this case.
  • Consider Counseling Together - When you care about your partner, it might be wise to get couples counseling. It's possible that there are some issues within your own relationship that need resolving.

Dating someone who is codependent can be a big challenge. However, it's not one that you can't overcome. If you put the time and effort in together, your relationship can become stronger as a result.

Types of Treatment for Codependency

Psychotherapy is often necessary for people who are in codependent relationships. Usually, the condition is a result of a long-term issue, and it's one that's not easy to fix. Professionals have various techniques that they can use to help someone improve.

During psychotherapy, the goals will be to:

  • Help the person understand why they feel the need to overcompensate.
  • Help the individual learn why they always put themselves last.
  • Get to the heart of why the behaviors began in the first place.
  • Develop a sense of self-compassion.
  • Work on changing old behavioral patterns.

Therapy will be so important, and it's best to start with individual counseling sessions in most cases. Eventually, the person may be ready to begin with group therapy. Couples or family therapy is usually also recommended. This can help the person identify any behaviors that other people find to be problematic. Of course, there are also other treatment options.

Some people may find that going to a 12 Step group is very helpful. Codependents Anonymous is a group that has been specifically designed for this purpose. It's actually modeled after the 12 Steps used in Alcoholics Anonymous. CoDA can offer people a lot of peer support. They can get the encouragement they need to make better decisions regarding their behaviors and choices.

Finally, there may come a point when you need to consider taking medications. If you suffer from anxiety or depression as a result of codependence, medications can really help. You may need to take an antidepressant, which can improve your symptoms fairly quickly. This may be the fastest way for you to find the relief you're looking for. When coupled with therapy, medication treatment has shown to be very effective.

Codependency isn't something that you should be ashamed of. However, it is a problem that you should address right away. We can help to guide you if you're in need of help to heal from this condition. Also, if you know a codependent, we can assist you in helping them get the assistance they need. Contact us right away to learn more. Bottom of Form

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I Know if I Have a Codependent Personality?

There are certain characteristics that tend to dominate when a person has a codependent personality. They can include:

  • Feeling responsible for the way other people feel, their thoughts, their choices and their general well-being.
  • Finding it easy to feel and express anger when something bad happens to others, but not when something bad happens to you.
  • Feeling your best when you are giving to other people.
  • Feeling guilty when someone gives to you.
  • Feeling compelled to help people fix their problems.
  • Getting involved with another person to the point where you lose interest in your own life.
  • Being unable to stop thinking, talking or worrying about other people and what is happening in their lives.
  • Remaining in relationships that are not working.
  • Tolerating abusive treatment just so the person will continue to love you.
  • Leaving a bad relationship to form new ones that are just as destructive.
  • Feeling empty inside without a crisis to deal with or a problem to solve.
  • Having a hard time identifying what you are feeling inside.
  • Getting upset when a person refuses your help.

Are Codependent Relationships Always Bad?

Even if you are trying not to be codependent, every relationship has some level of codependency in it. This is reasonable to a point because it is normal for one person to ask the other for advice about major decisions. But there is a fine line that can be easily crossed if you are not careful.

It is really important to ask yourself this question: Is my relationship healthy? If you are seeking out, maintaining or even feeding off a relationship that is not healthy, you could be codependent. But a lot of experts believe that the term codependent is one that encourages too much independence in humans who were designed to be interdependent.

True codependency comes from a place of anxiety. You or your partner want reassurance and you do not want to take any risks. As a result, you check in with your significant other because doing so helps you feel safer.

Codependency becomes a serious problem when one person starts to feel like they are being suffocated. Or, it can turn bad when one person is constantly sacrificing their own needs to make the other person happy.

How Can I Overcome Codependency?

Even before you get any type of treatment, if you believe you are in a codependent relationship, there are some changes you can start to make right now. It is possible to heal from codependency, but it takes a lot of work.

Some of the healthy steps you can take include:

  • Being honest with yourself and your partner about your needs and desires. Stop doing things you do not want to do because it will only breed resentment later on.
  • Change negative thought patterns into positive ones. Codependents often find it hard to think positively, and it will take some practice to let go of those negative thoughts.
  • Stop taking things personally. This can be very difficult to do; especially if you are in an intimate relationship. Work on accepting the other person as they are without feeling the need to fix or change them.
  • Take breaks from your partner. You should have a life outside of your codependent relationship. Take some time and go out with your friends or spend some time with close family members. This does not take away from your relationship, and if it is done correctly, it can add so much depth to it.
  • Consider going to counseling. It can be so helpful to talk with an unbiased third party about what you are going through. They can help you identify codependent issues in your relationship and work to repair them in healthy ways.

What Causes Codependency?

Codependency may be caused by several different factors, such as:

  • Growing up in a home in which your emotions were punished or even ignored altogether. This can result in you having feelings of low self-esteem or shame. You may believe that your needs are not worth tending to as a result.
  • Being in a relationship with someone who has an addiction. This can mean that they are addicted to alcohol, drugs, shopping, gambling or another addictive behavior. The codependent becomes the caretaker out of a desire to help, but their own needs take a back seat.
  • Living in a household where abuse is common. This can refer to emotional or physical abuse. The codependent may find themselves feeling responsible for the abusive person. If they have an untreated mental health problem, the codependent may attempt to help them feel better by caring for them more.
  • Codependent parents may attempt to protect their children from experiencing problems or hardships in their lives. They may attempt to control them in a way that will result in the child meeting the parent’s expectations for success.
  • Taking care of someone with a disability, chronic or terminal illness. Many caregivers find that their lives end up revolving around the person they are caring for. Their own needs and wants come in second or not at all.

Is Codependency a Mental Illness?

Some experts view codependency as a mental illness. But the more correct definition is that it is an emotional and behavioral condition that can impact a person’s ability to have a healthy, mutually satisfying relationship. Sometimes it is referred to as a relationship addiction. This is because codependents tend to have one-sided, destructive relationships with other people.

What are the Best Therapies for Codependency?

If you believe you are codependent, it can be helpful to sit down with a therapist and discuss your relationships. Therapy can make such a big difference. The same is true for 12-Step groups, which can provide much-needed peer support. Sometimes medications may also be recommended.