I had no idea I was codependent. But the man I was dating knew. He knew because he dated someone exactly like me in so many ways.
It’s actually a little scary how much we are alike. And I know this because she is now one of my best friends.
I grew up in an alcoholic home. My parents went to work each day and no one would have known that they drank to the point of passing out every night.
I learned early that families had secrets and there were things that you just didn’t talk about.
I was the youngest and was a pest to my siblings. I spent a lot of time with my parents and their friends. It’s part of being the youngest I guess.
I was SUPER shy. I had learning disabilities and struggled in school. Pulled out of class for tutoring, summer school, tutors at home. I never felt I belonged.
In high school, I dated that class clown. I had friends in every click but never really belonged to any one group. I was that horrible person in high school who dropped all her friends when I was dating someone.
I married at 23, which was way too young, to the guy who could make friends with anyone in 5 minutes if alcohol or sports were involved. I had very few friends that came to my wedding, because I had very few friends.
My friends were his. And I wasn’t much of a drinker and didn’t know or care much about sports. But everything we did centered about him and his likes.
My life became all about who ever I was with. It’s just who I was and i thought that’s how relationships worked.
My needs were last. And with my husband my feelings because an after thought. I became pretty capable of doing things myself or alone or with just me and the kids. And after 16 years together I walked away. He moved in with someone else after I left with the kids. I was broken that I wasn’t worth fighting for.
Fast forward a few years and I am the single parent of 3 young men who’s father is sarcastic, mean spirited and who’s MO is to do the minimum that life requires of him.
And who walked into my life but a familiar face from high school. We became friends on Facebook and there was something about him. He saw things in my life he wanted and told me all the things I needed to hear.
He was dry and wanting to work a program. We went to AA step 11 meetings because they were meditation meetings. He never shared. He kept saying he wanted to get a sponsor but couldn’t find the right one. He never told me the truth about how he was feeling and that he was struggling.
He knew my history of what I now know is codependency but shared very little about himself. We talked about all sorts of things but he was never completely honest. He always turned it into that it was about me. He wanted to take care of me. He wanted to offer stability in his completely unstable reality.
My life was the perfect storm for codependency.
And my journey to stop this cycle and finding serenity continues….