Codependency In Relationships
There are a lot of things that can go wrong in a relationship, and codependency is a huge one. There is a difference between depending on someone, and enabling someone to live a lie. One of the most common definitions of codependency in relationships is when one spouse enables bad behavior in another. For example, when one spouse exhibits signs of alcoholism, the other may enable them without realizing what they are doing. They may ignore what is going on, or do things to allow them to continue. This might mean making excuses for them, and even doing things like buying them alcohol.
In normal relationships, spouses sometimes help each other out. However, when there is codependency in relationships, this is something that gets in the way of the normal functions of life. Often, the help that one spouse feels they are giving is actually hurting the other person. Enabling someone to drink or do drugs is not what is best, but getting someone help may threaten the dynamic of the relationship, and that is too scary for some to deal with. Rather than risk change, or even losing that person, those is codependent relationships allow things to continue, even when those conditions are less than ideal.
Codependency in relationships does not have to be about drugs and alcohol. Some spouses can enable another spouse to continue with habits that are not for the best. When one depends on the other too much, it almost becomes more of a parent-child relationship more so than a marriage of two individuals. This can be dangerous because the dependent partner will do anything they can to keep the marriage where they want it to be. That might mean putting up with abuse, or with a serial cheater. The other spouse becomes dependent on the enabler to make them feel that what they are doing is okay, even when deep down they know it is not.
If you have any suspicions that you may be prone to codependency in relationships, there are probably reasons from your past that make you this way. You don't have to go from one relationship that is codependent to another of the same kind. Instead, seek out therapy and support. Both are available and both are very helpful. Therapy can help you understand why you seek codependent types of relationships, and what you can do for yourself that allows you to find much healthier ones in the future.