“My grace is enough for you: for where there is weakness, my power is shown the more completely.” 2 Corinthians 12:9 (PH)
Last Friday, we talked about codependency in our live CR Facebook and share group meetings. It’s always a topic that is confusing to many. After all, aren’t we supposed to help people and serve people as Christians? Yes, we are, but we need to do so in healthy ways. We should walk the journey for them, and most importantly, we are not to lose our identity and uniqueness by getting wrapped up in trying to fix, enable, or rescue people.
My first encounter in understanding codependency came from an experience while attending a treatment facility in Estes Park. Back then, it was customary to have your spouse or close family member attend for a week so they could seek counseling and recovery. My wife, Nan, attended and to this day, I am so grateful she did. Codependency came to the forefront as we had a session with her counselor that vividly pointed out the pain and suffering of people living with an alcoholic or addict.
Nan’s counselor had us sit down facing each other, holding hands and closing our eyes. She then had Nan tell me what she was feeling, where she was at that time in her life. What I heard was horrifying, it was the biggest wake up call for me as she described the emotions she was feeling and how they acutely resembled my own state of emotional turmoil. It was then that I realized that Nan had become codependent with my addictive behaviors, but she didn’t drink or use. She was in the middle of my insanity, sober and going crazy. That was when I learned that addiction is a family disease and if you live with an addict long enough, you will be adversely affected and you will hit a bottom just like the addict.
Consequently, Nan and I realized we both needed recovery and our journey started – Nan in Alanon and I in AA and then years later in Celebrate Recovery. In fact, I was on the receiving end with Nan when we had a family member succumb to addiction. My codependency came out full force as I tried everything to help her, but to no avail. I felt the pain and frustration, the hopelessness and anger, the fear of letting go, and came to the point of letting her go – not knowing what was going to happen to her. Nan was much better in dealing with this than I. She had a lot more experience with this years before me, but it was still very tough on both of us. Stopping the enabling and rescuing was hard, but I learned some valuable truths in it all. You have to love somebody enough to be honest with them and hold them responsible and accountable for their actions. That’s when codependent behavior stops. And I had to believe god was in the middle of this and trust that he wanted the best for her and for us. Long story short, my family member has been clean and sober for 14 years now and works as an addiction’s counselor.
Codependency isn’t relegated to addiction only. It’s a relational issue that can occur whenever one person is giving in unhealthy ways, the need to be needed seems to be the root cause and it becomes pathological when we are in relationships where one person give inappropriately and the other continues to take. When you give to the point of losing yourself in another’s problems, losing your identity as life becomes all about the other person, you are in a codependent relationship. The antidote starts with make yourself a priority by asking for help. In Celebrate Recovery, we are very familiar with recovery from codependency as we incorporate God, community, and the 12 steps of recovery to work through the tough issues. We have many success stories to share and we hope that if you are in a codependent relationship, you will check out CR. We are here for you.
Additional Resources to check out:
Codependent No More by Melody Beattie
Boundaries. Cloud and Townsends
Celebrate Recovery // Crossroads Church
CELEBRATE RECOVERY/CROSSROADS CHURCH UPDATES/REMINDERS:
- If you are in need of prayer, please send your prayer requests to [email protected] and we will forward those to our Celebrate Recovery Prayer Team. The Crossroads Church Prayer Team would also love to pray for you, so when you send your email, please note if you are okay with us forwarding your prayer request to the church.
- Fridays at 6:30pm, we are hosting “CR Friday Night Live.” To subscribe to our YouTube channel, please click on the following link and select the subscribe button. CR YouTube Channel Link. There will be a song or two of worship and then a short recovery based dialogue between a couple of CR members. This will be streamed on YouTube.
- On Fridays we will be hosting on-line open share group meetings at 7:30pm. There will be one mixed issues group for men and one mixed issues group for women. Men’s Open Share Group Sign-Up / Women’s Open Share Group Sign-Up. These meetings will take place using the Zoom App. In order to participate you will need a tablet, smart-phone or computer with camera. In order to ensure confidentiality of these meetings everyone who participates will need to find a private room to set up, have their camera on, so others can see that there is no one else in the room and they will also need to wear a pair of headphones so that they are the only ones that can hear. This is a free app and you can download it on google play, apple app store or through your web-browser on your computer. For help on how to join a Zoom meeting please click on the the following link, which will take you to their support web-site Zoom Set-Up Help