"He's lost without me": how to stop indulging others?

"I met my husband at a cafe. He sat down beside me, began to pour out the soul: work hard, time for personal life is not enough. As a child, his father left the family, the mother began to drive to his men. He himself, when he grew up, met with women just for sex.

His words touched me. Probably, I was sorry for him. We began to meet. He drank it all the time, struck up an affair on the side. When I could not stand it - fell to his knees, he blocked the door, begged not to leave. I stayed. I do not know why - maybe out of pity after the story he told. I thought, wait together, he settle down. But then everything went back over again. "

This is a true story, and these can be found a lot - on the forums, in the lives of friends and relatives, even his own. Indulge behavior can manifest itself in many different ways.

Daughter secretly brings the drinker father flask of alcohol in the hospital, though doctors strictly forbade him to drink.

Parents continually loaning money to an adult son, pay his bills, buy products.

Wife forgives and justifies her husband, who raises her hand and humiliates her.

Family justifies and rescues out of trouble, "good for nothing" relatives who are constantly arising problems with the law.

Indulging does not come from nowhere. "Breeding ground" often co-dependent relationship. Codependency is easy to recognize - it does not have equal rights, and each of the "partners" (in fact, there is no partnership) takes this situation. One is passive, infantile, recklessly. Another blind eye to his faults and the harm it causes to themselves and others, and acts as a deliverer. "It breaks - I fix" - this phrase from the movie "Pokrovsky Gates" quite accurately describes the distribution of roles in the codependent couple. Deliverer may complain of his "destiny" to be angry with those of a partner, defiantly to rip a relationship with him - but not to change anything. He justifies his efforts obligation ( "this is my cross and I bear it", "this my destiny"), compassion ( "what to do if it's without me disappear"), love ( "here love him this, and that's it "). Many deliverers see in their actions the high destiny tone: "I'm saving a person from falling, I'm the one / one keep it afloat."

The reasons why we indulge

1 The concern for a loved one: we feel their suffering and want to facilitate them.

2 The fear that the loved one may get into trouble.

3 The fear of running into conflict.

4 The inability to set boundaries.

5 The fear that the loved one will leave, decides to take revenge, destroy our lives.

Indulging like trying to appease the dragon by feeding him regularly sheep. Perhaps the dragon ever feels full and will fly away, but it will be soon. And so, at least, the village is still intact. However, from time to time monster violates the contract (three sheep per week), fire suits, just to frolic. But residents are afraid to fight back, because then their fragile but hard-won security will be destroyed.

Redeemer also choose to continue their suffering, because is under the illusion that the situation under control. Illusion - because concessions will not keep the addict from the new "exploits". On the contrary, feeling secure rear in the face of a savior, he will continue to poison the life of themselves and others. Indulgence - is primarily a problem of a savior, he is often unaware. It begins with it the way to a sober view of the situation, which could be a positive ending.

1. Be aware of your limits

We can not change another person. To inspire, to show him the way to change, to offer help - yes. But do not take control of his life. In the case of pandering, we do not control anything - we just eliminate the effects of the devastation caused by man.

2. Separate yourself from the other person

Deliverer will sigh, but "pulling his strap" and "drag his cross" to the end. He thinks it's worth a moment to leave the ward, and he gets stuck even deeper in trouble. Then it is necessary to make more efforts to rescue him.

This argument implies that we take full responsibility for the actions of another person. But he is not a puppet, and we are not puppeteers. Its decisions belong only to him. While acknowledging this, we become selfish. We only recognize the natural boundaries between themselves and others: I - it's me and you - it's you.

3. End the delusion

It would be better to say - the denial of the obvious. When we indulge a man in his addiction or encourage its provocative behavior, we assure ourselves that all this is for his own good. But in reality, it is our participation allows him to do nothing, not aware of their problems and not try to solve them.

Empathy makes us choose the fastest and easiest way to alleviate the suffering of another

Maybe he needed skilled care (doctor, therapist). But the deliverer of his "concern" drowns out this awareness gives false hope: you can live as before, and everything will be fine.

4. Dim empathy

Compassion - a wonderful feeling, but in the case of co-dependent relationship it can become an insidious cargo, pulling us down. Conscience says it all: "We should not leave the person alone with their weaknesses," "an enemy of yourself, and you throw him alone to fight this enemy."

The problem is that empathy makes us choose the fastest and easiest way to alleviate the suffering of the other. We see how relative is suffering alcoholic, and buy him a drink. We dissolve from surging tenderness partner who yesterday threw at us with fists. But all of these situations - only a part of a recurring script.

If we cease to succumb to manipulation, we do not get the "bad" - we are looking for a more constructive way to deal with the problem.

5. Think about what makes you indulge

Maybe indulge your behavior - the result of your own insecurity, anxiety, feelings of guilt? This is one reason why a deliverer, even trying to get out of this role, often returning to the same point: his self-esteem drops, anxiety increases, and the shame and guilt make life unbearable.

To avoid this, it is necessary to consult a therapist. There are special techniques that help to understand the true causes of the alarm and remove it, bring self-esteem from the blow.

The main thing: unless you worked for motives of their behavior, you will return again and again to the barren hopes to change another person by means of indulgence. Dragon can not drive away, bringing him sacrifices. You can only cast it out or find another, safer place to live. If your loved dear to you, do not follow him in his weaknesses. Encourage your child to help, offer to outline a plan that will help him cope with the problem. If he agrees to your terms - act.

About the Author: Sharon Martin - a cognitive-behavioral therapist.