Characteristics of Codependence or how to understand that I am codependent?


The codependents in most cases:

  • think and feel that they are responsible for the addict – for their emotions, thoughts, actions, choices, desires, needs and in general for their fate;
  • worry, feel pity and guilt for every problem that arises;
  • feel obligated – almost forced to react immediately to every action of the addict;
  • try to please the addict at their own expense;
  • feel constant tension and feel tired.

Low self-esteem

The codependents most often:

  • constantly blame themselves;
  • blame themselves for everything they think of, including the way they think, feel, look, act and behave;
  • think they are not good enough;
  • fear rejection;
  • feel ashamed of themselves;
  • feel ashamed of the problem in the family;
  • feel confused, being losers, etc. – in response to the problems and failures of the addict in the family;
  • are convinced that they do not deserve to be happy or that something good could happen to them;
  • do not believe that they can love and be loved.

Obsessive thoughts

The codependents tend to:

  • be terribly worried about a problem or a person;
  • worry about trifles;
  • focus all their energy only on the problem or the person;
  • abandon their duties because they are constantly upset by their problems.


Most of the codependent:

  • live in an uncontrollable environment and with uncontrollable people, which inflicts daily pain and frustration;
  • do not notice or try to notice their fear of losing control;
  • think they know best how to fix things and how to control problems;
  • try to control everything and everyone around them through helplessness, sense of guilt, violence, threats, advice, manipulation or domination.


Codependents most often:

  • deny long before acknowledging their problems;
  • belittle their problems;
  • believe lies; they delude themselves.


Most codependent:

  • get ‘hooked’ on each person and anything they think can help them solve their problems;
  • need other persons more rather than wanting to be with them;
  • allow others to abuse them in order not to lose them;
  • feel trapped, maintaining certain relationships;
  • desperately need love and approval;
  • worry that the other will abandon them.

Unstable borders

Codependents often:

  • state that they will not allow others to behave in a certain way;
  • gradually expand their limits of tolerance until they eventually begin to do and allow others to do things, they have said they would never allow;
  • allow others to hurt them;

Progressive move

In the late stages of codependence, people sometimes:

  • are overwhelmed by lethargy;
  • feel depressed;
  • feel alienated and isolated from the world;
  • neglect their children and other responsibilities;
  • experience feelings of hopelessness;
  • think of suicide;
  • get infuriated;
  • suffer from a severe emotional, mental or physical disorder;
  • get addicted to alcohol, drugs or narcotics.