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The Inner Dialogue of Codependents: Harsh much?

What does the self-talk of a codependent sound like?

How do codependents sound after they’ve made a mistake, f*cked up, or disappointed someone?

Why are codependents so affected by other people? Then OBSESS over controlling the behavior of other people?

Thank you for listening!

Be sure to join the Codependummy Podcast Facebook page at: for MARCH MADNESS where Marissa will be hosting a Q&A, group coaching, and a chance to interact with her + Codependummy listeners. Also, if you join THIS WEEK, you’ll receive her recent workshop Self-Care in Self-Quarantine: How to Prioritize Your Mental Health at Home along with a free companion workbook! HOP ON IT!

In this episode:

Marissa earns an “E” for explicit! It’s vile, vulgar, and violent language but also a true depiction of just how cruel codependents can be towards themselves when they make a mistake, disappoint someone, or fail.
Marissa provides a real-life example when she f*cked up dating someone and how cruel she was to herself for “ruining” a potential relationship (nevermind the fact that he was not perfect since that never, ever matters to a codependummy!)
Marissa provides two strategies you can start to create a kinder inner dialogue and assert your feelings & needs in your relationships

Helpful links:

Cori Rosenthal’s interview that discusses the idea of creating a kinder inner dialogue:
Melody Beattie’s book, Codependent No More:
Marissa’s free course, Codependummy 101–>
Wanna work with Marissa? Visit her practice page at for $20 off your first 3 sessions after matching with a therapist.

In this episode, Marissa shares about the inner dialogue of codependents. Why? Because, as a group, codependents are very, very harsh with themselves.

Before she gets into it, Marissa shares a few things:

Girl, thank you so much for listening! YOU–listening right now. Thank you for listening.
Hear her make her commitment to post an episode for the next 5 years!
If you are a patient of mine, you can let Marissa know you’ve been listening. The focus of each therapy session is on you so I haven’t brought it up but you can!
She’s gotten feedback and questioned the entire theme of the show.
What’s it like for her to show up imperfectly and practice “courageous vulnerability, which many experts who treat codependency encourage? HARD but also not impossible.
Despite the feedback, Marissa is going to persist and ensure she is working towards her goal to help you stop playing small and start taking up space.
How has Marissa been a codependummy even in the first 3 weeks of launching the podcast?

Next, we get into what the inner dialogue sounds like.

Melody Beattie, author of Codependent No More, defines codependency as “someone who is affected by the behavior of others and is obsessed with controlling that person’s behavior.”

Marissa describes her obsession with controlling others…and how she also controlled herself by being harsh, mean, and self-destructive with how she spoke to herself.


WARNING: HONEST LANGUAGE! Marissa earns an “E” for explicit since this is how codependents truly sound to themselves.

F*ck filters. Marissa shares what she actually sounded like throughout her 20s when she made a mistake, disappointed someone, or failed.

Five scenarios when codependents inner dialogue is at it’s worst:

When we blame ourselves
When we pick on ourselves for our thoughts
When we pick on ourselves for our feelings
When we pick on ourselves for our looks
When we pick on ourselves for our actions

Marissa gets true and honest about how mean she was towards herself: idiot, stupid, worthless, incompetent, and on and on it went. Marissa also discusses the guilt she felt as a codependent when she made a mistake or disappointed someone. “I can never, ever disappoint someone.”

Marissa would deny her thoughts, feelings, and needs through her self-annihilation via her self-dialogue.

Marissa gives a real-life example when, at the age of 21, she f*cked up. She was in a dating relationship that had her up to her eyeballs in codependency. Her behaviors and actions demonstrated her sole purpose at that time: What do I need to do for you to stay?

Marissa denied her feelings about her potential boyfriend’s ongoing communication with his ex-girlfriend. In an effort to cope, she got drunk and did something to compromise the whole relationship. Nevermind that he was communicating with his ex-girlfriend–Marissa felt HORRIBLE afterwards.

Marissa was such a codependummy. She was so focused on proving how lovable she was to this young man that she didn’t even factor in the fact that he was still heavily involved in a relationship with his ex-girlfriend. She recalls how she cried, was distracted, lost her appetite, and felt so so guilty for disappointing him.

There likely is an unconscious part of codependency where we think “If I’m harsh enough with myself, then I won’t do it again. If I beat myself up enough, I’ll receive the harsh punishment and be able to move on from there.” Codependents are their own judge and jury where they often give each other a harsh punishment. Marissa discusses how pervasive her ruthless inner dialogue was and how it didn’t take much to “kick in” and for her to beat herself up.

What comes up for you while listening? Have you been this harsh to yourself or harsher?

Then, we talk about how we can develop a kinder inner dialogue. We also need to pick on other people instead of picking on ourselves.

Marissa gives examples of how you can both be kinder to yourself and also verbalize your thoughts, feelings and needs to avoid being so mean to yourself.

Your homework: reflect on your own inner dialogue. How do you talk to yourself when you make a mistake? Disappoint others? Not meet the expectations of others?

Join the facebook group to request your spot now for March Madness! Starting March 1, Marissa will be in there for a Q&A, group coaching, and other bonus material from the podcast. You can connect with her and other codependummy listeners but you have to request to join between 2/22-3/1!