You love to be the hero. You are strong, assertive and courageous. You love a challenge and enjoy conquering the seemingly impossible.
These qualities can trap you in a codependent relationship if you are not careful. You may perceive a needy, addicted, or deeply wounded individual as a challenge to be conquered.
You can easily see yourself as the hero in the life of someone who has myriad problems. Someone who is needy and wounded can appeal to your sense of courage.
You will genuinely want to be a champion for the wounded individual who you perceive as needing the right person to transform them into their whole, healed self. You may see yourself as the key needed to solve their puzzle.
This is actually a function of your unchecked ego and may have more selfish than selfless underpinnings but unless you are extremely self aware you will likely miss this at first.
Impuslively, you may jump into the other person’s life eager to be the rescuer only to learn too late that this dynamic will bring you down before it uplifts the other person.
Security is important to you. Your trigger to pursue a co-dependent relationship will usually begin because you feel anxious knowing that others’ basic needs are going unmet.
Once you are hooked, you are likely to stay in a co-dependent relationship even after you have realized it is unhealthy for you. This is because consistency is important to you. You will feel as if you are abandoning the person.
You will also likely want to prove your loyalty and dependability no matter how much the relationship drains or stresses you.
Eventually you will come to see that your efforts are hurting both the other person and yourself and you will take a practical approach and move on.
You are curious about people. You are likely to get hooked into a codependent relationship with someone who seems to be charming and intelligent. You will find out later as you get to know the person better, that they lack stability.
Initially this will seem like an adventure to you. You don’t like being bored and so it may appear to be a perfect match because things are always in flux.
Until you recognize that there is a difference between excitement and chaos. Then you will spin your wheels rationalizing your partner’s behavior and making creative and elaborate excuses for their lack of stability.
Eventually you will look for an escape route. You may at first try to get your needs met through your social contacts, rationalizing the continuation of the romantic relationship.
Eventually you will realize enough is enough and you will leave in pursuit of other options, or you will become so detached that the other person leaves the relationship in search of someone who will be more fully attentive.
You will be attracted to the wounded person, feeling that their helplessness and problems stem from an insufficient relationship with early caregivers.
This will send loud signals to your nurturing surrogate parent radar. You will convince yourself that you are the only one who can understand and love the person who has caught your attention.
You will feel sorry for them and feel it is your job to nurture them back to their full potential.
You are emotionally sensitive and even though this relationship will cause damage to you, you will likely cling to the person because they need you and that feels better than being alone.
Until eventually when the time comes that you realize you are both drowning.
When that day comes, you will continue to hold on because now you have gotten into a pickle and letting go is not your strong suit.
Eventually you may be able to break the spell that has you transfixed on your wounded partner. When this happens you may need therapy to help you sort out the truth of the relationship from the story you told yourself about what was happening.
You may initially be attracted to a codependent relationship with someone who appears to have power, status or glamour. You are excited by the energy others radiate and will likely perceive it as a measure of your own self worth to be needed by someone.
Eventually though you will start to feel like the neediness of the relationship is not healthy for you. You may become depressed and resentful, emotions you don’t typically feel for too long.
You will likely try to uplift the wounded person, hoping to share your radiant healing light with them.
When this doesn’t work you will likely leave the relationship, not initially because it is healthier for both of you, but because you will feel slighted that the wounded person was not healed by your presence.
You know how important it is to have stability, organization and a firm foundation. You will repeatedly go to great lengths to try to organize others’ lives and can be accused of meddling.
Yet when you encounter someone who is a hot mess and receptive to your intervention it could be love at first sight. It could also be extremely codependent.
You will not notice at first. You will likely feel appreciated by the person who will gladly drain your energy as you continually try to put all their ducks in a row for them. Over time however you will come to see that your efforts are simply not working.
You will then be able to step back and detach because it is easy for you to remove your emotions and see things objectively. The hardest part about leaving the relationship or changing the dynamic is that the wild and woolly ride did give you a feeling of importance.
If you can honestly see how your need to be needed contributed to the co-dependent dynamic you will be in much better shape to honestly appraise your role in the relationship and decide if you wish to proceed.
You believe life should be fair and that everyone should have an equal chance at success. When you perceive that someone who has captivated your interest and who seems to have been dealt an unfair hand, you feel compelled to overcompensate for what they are lacking.
En route to creating what you believe will eventually be balance, you may give up your time, energy, emotion, money and opportunities. You may come to feel responsible for the person and place your life on hold trying to uplift them.
Eventually you will realize that the scales are equalizing not by lifting your partner up, but by sinking you into a downward spiral.
When you have this epiphany you will struggle with the choice to leave or change the dynamic because you will second guess whether you did enough to try to get your loved one back on track. You will wonder if their miraculous turnaround is just around the corner and will give every effort you can to try to save your loved one from their own demons.
You may allow yourself to be completely taken hostage in the relationship, convincing yourself that it is not fair to succeed when another is stuck on a sinking ship of their own creation.
You can make other choices though and if you choose to jump on the lifeboat and head for shore, you will eventually come to see how imbalanced the entire relationship was.
You are attracted to anything mysterious, edgy and slightly dangerous. You believe you hold the power to heal and transform others. There is some truth to this belief though it does not manifest in the way you think it does.
You confuse love with control. For all of these reasons you may be drawn to codependency when your own energy is not carefully moderated and balanced.
You will see the person in distress as the perfect subject for your experiments in transformation. The story of Pygmalion, and its later retelling, My Fair Lady, could easily describe your process.
Deep inside, you fantasize about the admiration and power you will receive once you prove to the world that you and only you could transfer the wounded into a fully integrated and successful person.
In the mean time you see it as your mission to show your partner the path to healing, which subconsciously translates into exerting your magnetic influence over your partner and assuming that any progress made is proof of your power.
Chances are however, you will delve into the depths of addiction and obsession, becoming immersed in the chaos rather than pulling your loved one out of it.
You may still hold out for a miracle yet you will eventually seek self preservation and let go.
If anything will attract you to co-dependent relationships, it is knowing full well that you are unique, optimistic and fortunate. You may want to share your blessings and wisdom with those still wounded and struggling.
You will extend yourself to save a drowning person once, maybe twice, yet you value your health and opportunities and your freedom. You will not allow anyone to drag you down.
Eventually you will come to understand that you are powerless to save others and though you remain optimistic about the prospects for recovery, and you have a generous, benevolent heart, you also have strong moral and spiritual compass.
You will be able to put things in perspective by remembering that each person has their own path and choices and it is not for you to try to pull another, kicking and screaming, onto a path to healing and self sufficiency.
You value tradition, security and work. You may see a challenging relationship as a project. A person in need of fixing, rather than a wounded person who raises red flags.
How bad can it be? You may ask yourself.
You are level headed and objective. You may convince yourself that only you have the patience and steadfast personality to provide what your partner needs. You may also convince yourself that you just need to put more effort into the relationship.
You may look at the example set by your ancestors and parents and tell yourself one shouldn’t give up on a loved one, no matter how imperfect they are. As a result you will continue to invest time, energy and resources into trying to revive your loved one.
If anything will get you to move on, it will be recognizing the damage to your finances and sense of stability. You will then be able to easily detach because your attachment is more practical than emotional in the first place.
You are a rebel and will not be deterred from your goals by anyone. When you are enamored with a love interest, you will overlook the fact that your friends try to warn you about their drinking, chronic unemployment, drug use, or other symptoms of instability.
You don’t need a partner to feel complete, you are independent and have plenty of friends. Yet you are a humanitarian with a big heart for perceived underdogs.
The more others try to warn you about a prospective partner and potential for codependency, the more you will dismiss the warnings.
Also, the more you perceive the person to be alienated, the more you will identify with them. Oddly enough, it will not occur to you that you should take the hint, that this person has burned bridges and is not about to change.
You believe in individualism and will want to give the person a fair chance. Also, you believe that you are enough of an individual to be able to not have the same experience others have had with a person.
You are likely to see yourself as the one person who can walk through fire and not get burned.
Yet you will come to learn that the co-dependency ride is more erratic, chaotic and emotionally draining than you can manage. You are not fond of drama, unless you are the one stirring the pot.
If anything makes you hang on it will be a partner who, in spite of their flaws and wounds, brings excitement and intellectual stimulation. Someone who is eccentric and unusual will keep you captivated.
But you will only let yourself be hostage to a co-dependent relationship for so long. Eventually you will split and not look back.
You live for your imagination and creative fantasy life. You may encounter a wounded person and see and idealized version of who they could be, even if what they embody in the moment is completely different.
You are likely to get carried away projecting an illusion of who you want others to be rather than seeing people for who they are.
You will get absorbed into your partner’s distorted reality and may unfortunately sink to low levels of addiction, abuse, substance use and escapism. You are extremely susceptible to these relationships and will be oblivious to the danger you are in.
If and when the cloud lifts, you will require time and healing to process the dual realities you had been living. When not balanced, you fall into patterns of martyrdom and don’t even realize the extent to which you have sacrificed yourself for others.