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Time and again, your mom might’ve reminded you about the importance of adjusting and sacrificing to keep your marriage happy. But, when the adjustment and sacrifices go beyond a certain limit, you end up in an unhappy relationship. This is known as co-dependency and it can lead to the crumbling down of your marriage.
What is a Co-dependent Marriage – Are You in One?
A co-dependent marriage is an unhealthy relationship in which one person “clings” to another. In other words, one party ends up making too many sacrifices and adjustments whereas the other partner becomes over-controlling. The effects of co-dependency in marriage can be quite serious. You might end up feeling angry and resentful towards your partner and these emotions, when nurtured for a long time, could lead to divorce.
Signs of a Co-dependent Marriage
- You put up with the unhealthy behaviour of your partner and vice versa
- You overlook your needs to keep your partner happy
- You take responsibility for your partner’s behaviour
- You go out of your way to do things for your partner that he could easily do by himself
- Your mood is defined by your partner’s mood
- You feel your partner does not value or respect you enough
- You sacrifice to keep your partner happy and then feel resentful about it
- Your loved ones point out your partner’s over-dependence on you
- You avoid discussing your relationship with your loved ones
Tips for Overcoming Co-dependency in Marriage
1. Learn to Say ‘No’
It’s okay to say ‘no’ once in a while. Marriage is about love and both partners need to work on it equally. So, if yours expects too much from you, one of the best ways of breaking this co-dependency in marriage is by refusing to do a few things you know he should do himself. Though it could lead to raised tempers initially, it can help him realise your importance.
2. It’s Okay to Think About Yourself
How to stop being co-dependent in marriage also involves thinking about yourself. You’ve been sacrificing your happiness for too long just to reinstate peace in your marriage. However, it’s important to take your needs into consideration too in order to stay happy. Talk to your partner and make him see how crucial this is.
3. Get Some Help
If all else fails, you can always get outside help to overcome the co-dependency in your marriage. Ask family members you trust for advice. Better still, consult a relationship psychologist or a marriage counsellor who can help you and your partner resolve the problem and start life anew.
There’s a very fine line between co-dependency and a happy marriage. It’s the responsibility of both parties to maintain a healthy balance so that the relationship doesn’t end up falling apart. Love each other, respect one another and stay happily married till the end of days!