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What happens when we become codependent with friends?
How do codependent patterns like dependence, preoccupation, jealousy and absorption impact friendships?
Why do we need to stop being all-or-nothing in our friendships to ensure their healthy sustainability?
In this episode, you’ll hear me, your girl Marissa, talk about my “friendship boneyards.” That is, the pile of dead friendships from my past that were damaged by my codependency. I have amassed multiple BFFs (best friend for life) who I no longer talk to today. How could I be their BFF and now have no contact with them? It’s simple: codependency. You’ll hear me talk about how codependents tend to engage with close friends through four traits: dependence, absorption (total involvement), jealousy, and and preoccupation. I home in on one friendship from my early 20’s in hopes that, by hearing about my behavior, it will spare you from adding to the piles of your friendship boneyards. More failed friendships to come in future episodes since I sadly have a few. Thanks for listening!
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More deets on today’s episode:
We start with a temperature check. How’s your temperature? What’s coming up in your metaphorical weather today and the remainder of the week?
I then describe what the heck “Friendship Boneyard” even means. It’s inspired from The Lion King and represents all the former “best” friendships I’ve had that have died. Throughout my 20’s, I had multiple “best” friends that I no longer talk to today. This is thanks to my codependency and not addressing issues in the friendship before their demise. Ring a bell?
The lens we are looking through is inspired from Melody Beattie’s book, Codependent No More, where she discusses open and closed systems. In general, codependents tend to engage with others, including friends, in closed systems that involve dependence, jealousy, total involvement, and preoccupation.
I describe the four traits of closed systems by applying them to my friendship with “J.” Oh, the dependence, absorption, preoccupation, and jealousy I had in that relationship for her. I wanted to be her one and only despite not being her one and only. It ended with her basically disappearing after 3 years of friendship. This sounds sad but, like I say, I have multiple friendships that ended this way.
Questions for you:
What comes up for you as you hear about closed and open systems in friendships? How does it relate to your friendships?
Do you have a friendship boneyard?
Any interest in reaching out to those people? If so, why? If not, why not?
How can you start to make more meaningful friendships by prioritizing traits of open systems?
How can you be your own friend this week???
Thanks for listening!
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