Codependency, sometimes referred to as “relationship addiction," describes sacrificing one’s personal needs to try to meet the needs of others. Although it is often associated with romantic relationships, codependency can be experienced in all types of close relationships, including with family and friendships.  Someone who is codependent has an extreme focus outside themselves. Their thoughts and actions revolve around other people, such as a spouse or relative or they build their identity on helping or “saving” other people. Codependents typically experience feelings of low self-esteem, anxiety and insecurity in these relationships and may also experience perfectionism and control issues. Codependent symptoms can worsen if left untreated. If you are worried that you might be codependent, reach out to one of TherapyDen’s codependency experts today!

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"Kelli is a fantastic counselor. She has helped me unearth and address experiences I didn't realize were the root of some of the challenges I was facing in my personal and professional life. I am so grateful to work with her. She has helped me become more open and less burdened, which is helping me change behaviors that I have struggled to change in the past." (Client testimonial)

— Kelli Hall, Licensed Clinical Social Worker

At its root, codependency is a struggle with valuing the self and in knowing what it means to set boundaries with others. We can often feel confused by feeling selfish if we value ourselves, or mean if we set boundaries. It can be helpful to have someone work through these confusing thoughts and feelings toward a way of being where we know who we are and how to care for others without compromising a core sense of self.

— Joseph Hovemeyer, Associate Marriage & Family Therapist in Sierra Madre, CA

I am drawn to support women who are dealing with co-dependency, low self-esteem, perfectionism, challenges with romantic relationships and career/work challenges.

— Margarita Prensa, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist in New York, NY

I think codependency can be misunderstood and more people struggle with it than you may think! Codependency can show up in the form of focusing much more on others needs than on your own, perfectionism, and working hard to feel worthy. You might struggle to set boundaries, overwork in your job to feel good enough, or try to manage your appearance and body size to avoid feeling unworthy. I help people like you build confidence, set boundaries, and let go of guilt.

— Ashley Hamm, Licensed Professional Counselor in Houston, TX

In my work with people who have characteristics of codependency, I have found that these people are some of the kindest people on our planet. They have huge hearts and tend to give their all to others. Unfortunately this often comes with self-neglect, low self-esteem, and entering into unhealthy relationships. I help these individuals learn how to use self-love and healthy boundaries.

— Shannon Atherton, Licensed Professional Counselor in Springfield, MO

Those suffering from codependency may be feeling like they have to give up themselves in order to make the relationship work. Often times you may put the other person's needs ahead of your own because if you don't the other person may realize they don't love you and leave you. You may have thoughts of "If I am not helpful, useful, or what my partner needs me to be then they are going to leave me" These are all scary thoughts! We can unpack them in a safe space together.

— Joshua Bogart, Professional Counselor Associate in Beaverton, OR

Are you the one who always takes care of everything? Have you had to do things for yourself most of your life? "Codependency" is a big word that doesn't have to involve substance abuse. Ironically, its most common subjects describe themselves as "independent." If thinking about someone else's problems occupies more of your time than you'd like, let's talk.

— Kathryn Gates, Marriage & Family Therapist in Austin, TX

Codependency means so much more than enabling with someone you love and today this idea has expanded to include adults who may or may not have lived with an addict. Codependency can more accurately be defined as the tendency to put others needs before your own; accommodating to others to such a degree that you tend to discount or ignore your own feelings, desires and basic needs.

— Gary Alexander, Therapist in Vancouver, WA

I am Meadows Model and PIT trained in co-dependency and co-dependency recovery. I worked in a Meadows facility for nearly two years were I provided ongoing codependency treatment to individuals living with trauma and addiction.

— Alexandra Ludovina, Licensed Clinical Social Worker in Sunnyvale, CA

I have experience with 12-step recovery and love to support women and men dealing with adult-child issues, codependency, self-esteem, and developing healthy coping and self-care habits.

— Margarita Prensa, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist in New York, NY

Signs of codependency include: Difficulty making decisions in a relationship Difficulty identifying your feelings Difficulty communicating in a relationship Valuing the approval of others more than valuing yourself Lacking trust in yourself and having poor self-esteem Having fears of abandonment or an obsessive need for approval Having an unhealthy dependence on relationships, even at your own cost Having an exaggerated sense of responsibility for the actions of others

— Janie Trowbridge, Licensed Professional Counselor in ,

Codependency is often tied to the relationships that we have with addicts in our lives. Codependency is often defined as behaviors that enable behaviors we wish to see the end of but it often comes from a place of love, care and concern for others. The problem is that love, care and concern can result in giving too much to others. My goal in helping clients who struggle with codependency is to help them establish healthy boundaries so they can be supportive without overwhelming themselves.

— Aaron Bachler, Counselor in Tempe, AZ

Perhaps you seek a “coming home” to yourself in a way that feels safe & meaningful. Perhaps you long to understand yourself in relationships or in the world around you where you consider your needs as much as those around you. Being a people pleaser can lead to compassion fatigue and burnout. I am honored to walk alongside you as we explore and process all that you hold within you. You are allowed to let go, breathe and prioritize your wellbeing.

— Sabrina Samedi, Associate Marriage & Family Therapist in Westlake Village, CA

Codependency can be very confusing and debilitating. It is when what you think, say, or do depends on what you THINK another person will think, say, or do. You don't feel free because you base decisions on things that are out of your control, nor will they ever be in your control. This is because we can never control what another person thinks, says, or does. I will show you an "Area of Control" model to help you stay in your area of control.

— Nicolette Bautista, Psychologist in Folsom, CA

Do you have trouble with people pleasing? Always focusing on external issues or everyone else’s issues which leads to you ignoring your own needs or being able to care for yourself? I can help! We will work together to understand your relationships throughout your life to understand what led you to this place and work to chip away to build healthy boundaries and how to learn or relearn how to care for your own needs and wants.

— Emmily Weldon, Counselor in Marco Island, FL

Is it challenging for you to say "No" to your partner, parent, boss or co-workers? Do you find yourself wondering if you are helping too much, or giving too much of yourself, your independence or your personal power away? The art of managing your personal boundaries in a way that supports you and your relationships in a healthy and authentic way is part of the ongoing work of growing into a fuller, more realized version of yourself.

— Nathan Michael, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist in Berkeley, CA

Do you struggle with interpersonal boundaries either finding yourself with no boundaries getting hurt often or putting up walls and feeling the pain of isolation? Do you find that you hold resentment, have distorted/nonexistent spirituality, avoid reality (e.g. through addictions), or have a hard time with sustaining intimacy with others? I provide a safe, nurturing environment where we can gently explore these areas to create new experiences with oneself and one’s past.

— Addie Michlitsch, Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor in Roseville, MN