“The alcoholic wraps himself around the bottle and the co-dependent wraps him/herself around the alcoholic.” Unknown
Essentially, the co-dependent loses their identity in the identity of the addict. The co-dependent becomes addicted to the addict in much the same way the addict becomes addicted to the drug. The 12 Step group, Al-Anon immediately provides comfort, insight and education to the co-dependent. Co-dependency is a very real disorder, and once the co-dependent is in treatment, they learn to:
- witness their reactivity and mood changes “caused” by the addict;
- start to take control over their actions and reactions as well as their moods, inspite of what the addict may be doing or saying;
- become self directed and make decisions that are not influenced by and are independent of the addicts behavior; and
- establish boundaries with the addict and start living their own life again, whether or not the addict is clean.