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Transformational Codependence

Moving from Enmeshment to Autonomy.

How do you know if you are ready to be in a relationship or if you are still in place where you need space for healing?

Is it wrong to seek out relationships for the purpose of healing? Should the goal be to come together, already whole?

Some of us jump from one romantic entanglement to another without ever taking the time to really get to know ourselves again after we emerge from a rough relationship. 

The conundrum is: yes, we need the time and care to heal and individuate after heartbreak and there are wounds that do not surface when we are doing the solo thing. Wounds made in relationship need to relationships to heal them. 

This is about more than how we relate with our intimate partners. This about we can move from enmeshment and codependence to autonomy and interdependence with life and each other. 

I hope you enjoy this conversation with Jason D McClain and me! 

And here is an exceprt from an article I wrote, 

Why we Fall in Love with Potential (& How to catch Ourselves).

"And this is how it happens. It’s not that it is a fantasy; it’s that we see this person more clearly than they see themselves. It’s that love (or its potential) opens all our wounds, activates our neuroses and fears, and triggers the most human ache that we all share—abandonment

We see this beautiful other before us, and we long for what they first showed us. More than long for it, we still see it. It’s not a glamour—it’s real. But when they look into the mirror of their own longing and discontent, they see something else. 

They see someone less worthy of our love than we believe them, no, know them to be. They see all the ways they are failing in life, the ways they are not good enough. They see the glaring disparity between how they are capable of operating in the world, and who and what their family and culture have told them they are supposed to be. Their vision of themselves twists them up, mentally, emotionally, and physically, even. They cannot see the love we are offering, and if they can, they do not know how to unravel their own pain and confusion enough to receive it. 

They may keep themselves in this trance with all kinds of methods. Often it’s addictions cementing the blocks that shame has built around the most tender of hearts, layers to insulate the hurt. Perfectionism is another way self-loathing manifests. When nothing is good enough, we never have to feel the weight of our disappointments, but we never fully feel joy, either. I know this one. These trances are rooted in emotional numbing, which is why we can see that potential, but they can’t. When people are not available to themselves, they will never—as long as they cling to the trance of unworthiness—be available to us. 

So what do we do? "