Perversion of a Concept?

[Jan 8, 2008]
[Tags: Comfortable]

My wife and I have been talking about and working on a supposed problem in her life for quite a while now. It is an issue called "co-dependency". Now the Free Online Dictionary defines it as:

co-de·pen·dent or co·de·pen·dent (kō′dĭ-pĕn′dənt)

1. Mutually dependent.
2. Of or relating to a relationship in which one person is psychologically dependent in an unhealthy way on someone who is addicted to a drug or self-destructive behavior, such as chronic gambling.
One who is co-dependent or in a co-dependent relationship.

At the AlAnon meetings everyone told her that she had to be co-dependent because I was a drunk, so she was sick and in denial. After about 3 months of this crap we sat down and talked about it and I decided to read the book "Co-dependency No More". We talked some more and started doing research on codependency and it's history.

Co-dependency was originally conceived to describe a person that interfered with the recovery of an alcoholic or addict to maintain control of that person (the second definition above) or the status quo regarding their relationship.

Somewhere in the late 80's and early 90's some rocket scientists decided that there was money to be had if everyone could be convinced they were co-dependent and that it was a bad thing.

And the beat goes on. The popular coffee table psychobabble books have perverted the idea of co-dependency to the point where we all fit the second definition. The real issue for me is that these perverted concepts are being used by professionals to diagnose and recommend treatment for a psychological disease that quite possibly does not exist for a given person.

Using the current psychcobabble the bottom line on this is:

My wife and I are co-dependent and will require expensive professional help for the rest of our lives.

Using the original model the bottom line on this is:

My wife and I in love and will stay that way for the rest of our lives. And some shrink will have to find another way to make the mercedes payment

Now, be assured that I am not trying to trash anyone's cherished beliefs. I found this study to be interesting and informative. It also eased my wife's concerns regarding a supposed critical issue in our relationship.

I felt that mayhaps others would be interested in our findings, so here is a link to a site that has some food for thought on that subject and a few other related to addictions: There is also a links page in the main site that carries some very good references on this and other points of interest.

Everyone have wonderful day...


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