QUESTION: I'm not sure if I'm co dependent or not. I've been on a relationship for quite sometime and it has been a horrible experience complete with cheating and her having another mans baby giving me stds and doing nothing to make up for any of it. Counselors have told me to leave that she is not good for me but I have always made excuses for her and she has changed since all this happened but she is still not good for me because she's just not a good partner but I don't know why I stay other that financially it seems to be better that I stay but don't know if I'm making excuses or if I'm just do dependent. Can you help?
ANSWER: Hi David,
I'm sorry it took me so long to reply to your message.
I'm hearing you say that many people have counseled you to leave your partner and you don't seem to be able to do it. I would say the same thing but I don't think it would make a difference. The change must come from within you, and nothing will change until you decide that your own emotional and spiritual well being and health are more important to you than the drama, pain, anger, and huge disapointment you must be feeling.
I will make a guess that you have some relationship addiction going on, as you seem unable to choose to be with someone who treats you well. And, if you do get around to leaving, you will most likely choose someone similar, since you will not have changed. So, your choosing health and healthy relationships must come from within you, and there is help in the form of 12 Step programs. I highly recommend them. You could try Codependents Annonymous, which may have meetings near you, or you can find out about phone meetings if you are not near a big city.
Another really good program is Sex and Love Addicts Annonymous (SLAA) which can offer support for love, sex, and relationship addiction. If you go, you will learn a lot about it. YOu can google it to get more info.
I would also recommend any book on codependency, especially Codependent No More by Melody Beattie. It is often available from the library.
David, you don't have to live this way. You may be used to having relationships similar to this your whole life, but you can choose to live with loving and caring relationships. And, nobody can do the work for you. It's an inside job.
I hope this is helpful, and again I'm sorry it took some time to get back to you.
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QUESTION: Hello Katherine,
Thanks for the reply. You are correct I do feel huge pain, anger and disapointment over the fact that she had someone else's kid and then falsified the DNA test with my real daughters saliva to trick me into raising her lovers baby cause he wanted nothing to do with it. I feel betrayed and duped in the worst way and I can't seem to let the anger go. I found out after the baby was 3 years old that she duped me and now I don't know whether to leave the kid or just leave the mom or contact the father and have him step in or what. Just really confused and her family just supports her with whatever she does and tells her it's ok these things happen but this really doesn't feel like an oops I spilled milk type of a screw up, I was scammed. How does someone get passed something like this, do you think I'm exaggerating? She and her family make me feel like I'm being unreasonable and selfish cause I'm so angry over this so I don't know if I am or not, they feel I should just let it go and move on and just be the babys dad but I'm angry not at the kid but at this amazing betrayal, lie, and scam. I feel I was taken advantage of and they're like you need help David why are you making such a big deal over this. Thank you for the help.
I am saddened by the amount of pain, distrust, anger, and betrayal that you are feeling. I'm imagining that it may be hard to think of anything else? When you say,
I feel I was taken advantage of and they're like you need help David why are you making such a big deal over this.
I am reminded of the story of the man who goes into the hardware store and asks for a loaf of bread. "We don't carry bread here. It's a hardware store."
next day the man goes back to the same store."We don't carry bread here. It's a hardware store."
Next day the same, and the same.On and on.
The people who are telling you that you are making too big a deal over this are the family from where she learned this behavior.This is not a healthy resource for wisdom and guidance. Do you see this?
I don't think you are exaggerating, but David, it doesn't matter what I think. You must look inside yourself to find a resolution to this cycle of pain and anguish, and yes, some help would be great. Can you find a therapist that you can trust?
When you've received some emotional support, you will be able to access your heart's answer to what to do about this child, this relationship, and your own self-care.
HOpe this is helpful.