Friday, November 19, 2010

Book Review: Codependent No More

Book Review: Codependent No More - How to Stop Controlling Others and Start Caring for Yourself by Melody Beattie

If you live with a spouse, partner, or family member who is addicted to something, there is a good chance that you have become codependent. Beattie defines a "codependent" as someone "who has let another person's behavior affect him or her, and who is obsessed with controlling that person's behavior. We believe that we'd be happy if the other person would just change." Codependency is the group of behaviors, thoughts, and feelings that a person who is bound to an addict develops to try to change the other person. Codependents lose track of their own sense of self as they become lost in the world of the addict. They compensate for this by unleashing controlling behaviors on the person as a way of coping.

If you are person who feels stuck and unhappy in your relationship with an addict, this is the classic book on restoring yourself. Few people codependency as well as Beattie who is recovering successfully from a variety of addictive disorders and entanglements. In this classic work, she combines real-life stories with practical illustrations of the concepts that define every part of the codependent syndrome. I have offered this book to many clients (especially with spouses who are alcoholics) and it has been quite helpful for them. For myself, even though I don't consider myself codependent, there was definitely things that I was able to apply to myself as well. I rate it 4.2 ninja stars out of 5.

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