Co-NNections Recovery Stories

Irene H. – 9-24-19

I was unhappily married for 14 years. Since then, I never had a “real” or “normal” relationship. I was good with keeping things superficial but didn’t fully realize that this was a strategy for keeping safe. I could never allow anyone to see the REAL me—it simply wasn’t good enough! Finally, many years later, I set out to have a “legit” relationship. I felt so hopeful, but two failed relationships later, I found myself falling apart in every way when they ended. I was beside myself. I was left feeling broken and having to face the reality of my biggest fear: “I am NOT good enough”! The anxiety and pain was killing me. I had to get to the bottom of this.
One day, sitting in my car feeling so lost and depressed, I picked up my phone and searched “I’m tired of not being good enough” and quickly came across a video that spoke to me like nothing ever had! I hung on every word as a psychologist explained that what I was experiencing was a nervous system overload. I had been triggered. All the painful things in my childhood were activated. From there I learned of codependence and Codependents Anonymous. I gave too much of myself because I believed that I had to in order to be worthy of someone’s love. I’d always end up feeling depleted when the constant efforts were never reciprocated. All of the relentless “whys” came into play. Why do I keep ending up with broken men? Why can’t I find happiness. What is wrong with me? In these relationships, I saw myself in some ways and in other ways I saw my parents and the damage that that had done to my sense of self. The narcissistic abusive father and the codependent mother. I started to peel the layers and connect the dots. It all started to make sense—finally!
Those lost relationships hurt like hell but they were put in my path forcing me to dig deep and look in the mirror. It’s been two years since I’ve started my healing journey. Connecting all the dots to all the problems I’ve had in my lifetime. Relationships with family, friends, and co-workers were a struggle for me. I am happy to face my codependency now. I feel empowered. The nagging thorn in my side is gone. I still have my struggles but I understand what’s happening now and thanks to CoDA I have the tools to move forward. My spirit is lighter and my future is brighter.
Irene H – 7/9/19

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