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How to Fix a Codependent Relationship

The lines between codependence and love may sometimes be blurred. As a parent, you love your children and do things for them that you would rather not do, such as wake up in the middle of the night to feed them. But when it comes to relationships where drug abuse is involved, putting the other person’s wellbeing before your own can mean that you are codependent. How to fix a codependent relationship so that it is transformed into a positive one will be discussed in this article.

3 Minute Read | Published Sep 14 2023 | Updated Mar 04 2024 Expert Verified
Emma Collins
Written by
Dameisha Gibson
Reviewed by
Emma Collins
Written by
Dameisha Gibson
Reviewed by

How to Fix a Codependent Relationship – Separating Love from Codependence

Origins of Codependence

Many of us learn codependence from our parents. Behaviors such as unhealthy communication skills, being a martyr or having problems with boundaries are some of the things we pick up as children from our parents.

When a parent is emotionally unavailable, it can also be a cause of codependence later in the child’s life. When a relationship later starts, the person may be with someone who is also emotionally unavailable. They may think that with enough love and care, the person might suddenly change their behavior. Ultimately, the person is seeking the emotional expression of love that they never received from their parents. Many of these relationships are loveless and have unhealthy boundaries that cause continuous harm.

Much of the cause of codependence is the person’s belief that they don’t deserve the love they could get in a healthy relationship, opting to settle for something less that never quite pan out.

A person who is addicted to drug or alcohol is usually emotionally unavailable. A codependent person sees this as someone who they can try to fix, but in the end, it just perpetuates a continuous cycle.

Codependent signs are as follows:

  • Loving people that you can rescue or fix.
  • You take responsibility for the actions of others.
  • Keeping the peace in a relationships falls on you.
  • Fear of being alone.
  • Adjusting to change is difficult.
  • Decision making is difficult and filled with self-doubt.
  • You get your self-worth from others.
  • Your partner’s happiness is your responsibility.

How to Fix a Codependent Relationship

There are ways that on how to fix a codependent relationship that start with being honest with yourself. How to overcome codependency includes the following tips:

  • Stop Negativity – When you have negative thoughts and feelings then stop yourself. These are thoughts such as you deserve the bad treatment you get.
  • Take Things Less Personally – How to overcome codependency can be about taking people for who they are. It has nothing to do with you as a person but rather who they became in life.
  • Relationship Counseling – How to fix a codependent relationship can be assisted by getting relationship counseling. Allow a professional to be a mediator. As a third party, they will be able to point things out easier than you can. The feedback you get from them can be an excellent starting point to grow from.
  • Have Breaks – If you are having issues with a partner and fear codependence, taking a break can help. How to help a codependent person can be about them stepping back from the problem. Go on an outing with close friends and just take a break.
  • Look After Yourself – If you take care of yourself first, you will be in a healthier state of mind able to handle anything in your life. There is nothing selfish about taking care of yourself before another. How to help a codependent person starts with being your own best friend.

If you or a loved one is struggling with addiction, get help right away. Make a phone call that will connect you to a professional drug treatment center. The call you make may save your life or the life of someone you love. Call us today at (800) 429-7690.


bullet Beattie, M. (1989).
"Codependent No More: How to Stop Controlling Others and Start Caring for Yourself. Hazelden Publishing."
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bullet Cloud, H., & Townsend, J. (2001).
"Boundaries in Marriage: Understanding the Choices that Make or Break Loving Relationships. Zondervan."
Retrieved on April 02, 2018
bullet Lancer, D. A. (2015).
"Conquering Shame and Codependency: 8 Steps to Freeing the True You. Hazelden Publishing."
Retrieved on April 02, 2018
bullet Mellody, P., Miller, A. W., & Miller, J. K. (2003).
"Facing Codependence: What It Is, Where It Comes from, How It Sabotages Our Lives. HarperOne."
Retrieved on April 02, 2018
bullet Norwood, R. (1985).
"Women Who Love Too Much: When You Keep Wishing and Hoping He’ll Change. Pocket Books."
Retrieved on April 02, 2018
bullet Pia Mellody Institute. (n.d.).
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bullet Rosenberg, R. (2008).
"The Human Magnet Syndrome: Why We Love People Who Hurt Us. PESI Publishing & Media."
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bullet Woititz, J. G. (1983).
"Adult Children of Alcoholics. Health Communications."
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