Relationships tend to occupy the most space in your heart and in your head too. Which is why when there’s even the slightest bit of an issue, it keeps you distracted. No matter what you do, you can’t stop fixating around that one little thing you wish hadn’t happened. And once you settle it, all seems good again. This is something you’d find in almost every relationship. Then there’s the fear of losing them, which comes naturally too. But if that fear keeps you from speaking your mind or doing the things you want, then maybe you have a problem; the problem being, a codependent relationship. You feel like your survival depends on their presence, and that they complete you. You live for their approval. You think that they give meaning to your life and without them you’d be nothing.
Many of us conveniently classify all of these things as the consequence of love. We need to open our eyes to all such signs and deal with them. Being in a relationship does not mean losing yourself. It’s about building each other up.
1. You feel incomplete without them
There is no one and nothing in the world that can fill the emptiness inside you, except yourself. If you fool yourself into believing that your partner is capable of doing so, you will be constantly disappointed. This emptiness might even drive you to jump from relationship to relationship, never being able to find what you’re looking for.
You don’t need anyone to complete you, find it in yourself to realize that you’re in fact a complete person on your own. The person you’re with is someone you deeply care about, but they don’t define you. No one does. You define yourself.
2. You expect them to act the way YOU want them to
If they’re doing something that you don’t like or approve of, you fall prey to insecurities regarding their feelings for you. You can’t expect someone to be exactly like you want them to be. They are who they are, only in their own true skin will they be able to love you and make you happy. If they’re forced into doing something, they won’t be happy themselves, which in turn won’t do you any good.
3. You’re not responsible for your feelings
You’re constantly dependent on them for your own happiness. You allow everything they do to control your feelings. If they’re in a mood, you feel down too. And only if they try to do something nice for you, you feel good. You shouldn’t have to depend on someone for your feelings. It isn’t healthy.
4. You’re babysitting an adult
Relationships are about showing each other care and compassion. However, it doesn’t in any way mean that you’re constantly around them, doing things that they’re capable of doing on their own. It doesn’t leave much room for things you could actually be doing together. It doesn’t even allow you to be able to do anything for yourself either.
5. You turn into a control freak
Trying to control everything including your partner is damaging to a relationship. It only shows insecurity and lack of trust in the relationship. It makes the other person think that you don’t think they’re capable of making decisions on their own, or decisions that are in the best interest of both of you. It shows that you’re afraid of losing control because you think that they’d drift apart or the relationship would go south. What you need to realise is that, relationships should be allowed to take their natural path, nothing can be forced.
6. You place the other person before you
It’s one thing to be considerate but a completely different thing to be self-ignorant. The former makes both of you feel good, while the latter is just bad news. Even if you’re doing everything that is right for them, you feel something missing inside of you. Unless you put yourself first, this feeling is never going away.
7. Your happiness depends on them
You hold responsibility for your feelings, it’s not anyone’s job to make you happy. Find happiness in the little things of life. Do something you’re passionate about. Discover yourself. You’ll realise that no one can do a better job at making you happy other than yourself.
8. You feel trapped
You can’t say what you feel. You’re not allowed to have opinions. You’re expected to agree with everything being said and done. You become alien to the concept of free will. Sounds pretty much like a prison, doesn’t it? It’s not like they’re physically forcing you to do all this, but you know you have to, just to keep them happy. None of these things spell out a relationship, all they point towards is suffocation.
9. They’re supposed to be your saviour
A person not being able to take care of themselves and depending on others to save them, doesn’t come off as appealing. Additionally, a relationship is between two equal partners. If one of them has to constantly salvage the other, how can you term such a relationship as balanced? Be your own savior, and allow the next person to be themselves.
10. The constant need to be loved
To get love, you need to give love first. The more you give, the more you get. This is the most important thing to practice in a relationship. There is no need for constant reassurances from your partner. They’re with you because they love you. Let them show it to you in their own way.
Codependent relationships are never satisfying. You feel trapped. They don’t allow you to grow. You tend to start getting used to the things the way they are, and you don’t try to change them. In doing so, you lose yourself. It’s very important to be considerate of your partner, but first learn to love yourself, and don’t ever think that you need to depend on anyone in any way, especially emotionally. You are all you need. Everyone else around you are just an added bonus!
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