10 Signs You Are In A Co-Dependent Relationship

10 Signs You Are In A Co-Dependent Relationship

Type the term "co-dependent relationship" in any search engine, and hundreds of articles will come up. Is it that co-dependent relationships are a growing phenomenon, or is it that more and more people are recognizing it for the unhealthy cycle it creates?

Relationships are about give and take, and a partnership of two individuals. But in a co-dependent relationship, all things tend to revolve around one half of the couple. Often times it is the female in the relationship that is the co-dependent partner. She is eager to please, always with a smile on her face, even when she is sad or upset. Usually a learned behavior from the household she grew up in.

Co-dependent relationship can loosely be defined as the feeling that one cannot exist, be happy, or even feel complete without the other person. This type of relationship tends to stunt personal growth, create or exacerbate low self-esteem, and prevent those involved from truly being happy.

Couples in codependent relationships tend to struggle for power and control. One or both are often anxious, resentful, and are guilt stricken. They do not respect each other’s individuality, or the need for autonomy. Surprisingly, the relationships are usually drama free, because one or both are not honest with their feelings. The relationship also tends to lack in passion, and true intimacy.

10 Signs That You Are In A Co-Dependent Marriage:


  • Spouses opinion matters more than your own, especially in decision making

  • You prioritize their happiness, even if it makes you unhappy

  • You do not do anything without them, and do not have your own identity

  • You do not set appropriate boundaries with your spouse, and fear telling them “no”

  • You ignore their dishonesty, possessiveness, and jealous tendencies

  • You avoid confronting your partner about important issues because you fear rejection

  • You can’t "live" without the other person

  • You feel trapped in the relationship, but feel that if you did leave, you’d be a horrible person for abandoning your partner

  • You feel as if your life revolves around your partner

  • You cancel plans to accommodate your partner’s whims

According to marriage counselors, autonomy is the key to a healthy, balanced marriage. In a marriage, yes you love each other and want to be spend time together, but you should also be able to function independently. There needs to be allowances for separateness, differences, and one’s own thoughts and feelings. A partner should feel like a support beam, not an anchor.

What are your thoughts on co-dependent relationships? Are you in a co-dependent relationship or know someone who is? Are some couples blissfully ignorant existing in this state? Or are they in denial? Either way, the bliss or denial cannot last forever.

What other telltale signs of co-dependency would you add to this list? Please share your story or experience!

A healthy relationship will never require you to sacrifice your goals, your dreams, or your dignity. - Unknown

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