Co-dependency, also known as “Relationship Addiction”, significantly impairs a person’s ability to engage in healthy, mutually satisfying relationships. It is often a learned pattern and frequently passed from one generation to another. This is especially common in families in which one or more members struggle with chemical dependency, chronic physical illness, abuse and/or mental illness.

Possible signs of co-dependency:
• Controlling behavior
• Avoidance feelings
• Exaggerated sense of responsibility for the actions of others
• Difficulty adjusting to change
• Chronic anger
• Sense of guilt when asserting themselves
• Perfectionism
• Distrust
• Fear of being abandoned
• Poor communication
• Problems with intimacy/boundaries
• Physical illness related to stress

Co-dependency develops when one person negates his/her own needs and instead, focuses on the needs and feelings of the other person. Though motivated by positive intent, this behavior can become compulsive and destructive. Co-dependent individuals may create one-sided relationships that can prove to be emotionally destructive and/or abusive. They may avoid expression of strong emotion, may deny any feelings at all, and often refrain from acknowledging and confronting concerns. Over time, the co-dependent person is often rewarded for caring for others and consequently, develops a need to be needed. This ultimately results in the person feeling helpless, angry, without choices, but unable to break away from the cycle of excessive caregiving.

These readings help individuals to explore their pasts and their relation to current destructive behavior. These can be used as tools to facilitate the self-discovery process, unbury ignored feelings, and find healthier alternatives to self-defeating patterns.