Book discussion: "Codependent No More: How to Stop Controlling Others and Start Caring for Yourself"


This is great. Thank you.


So I just started and also read the introduction. Definitely worth reading - there’s a parable at the end of it that makes one think.


@liv_m - I can so relate to so much of what you have said here. I also previously had a profession that was intense and all consuming and about everyone else’s problems. I then found myself at aged 35 to be professionally successful and functional to those looking in from the outside, but inside I was miserable, and feeling emotionally, physically and spiritually bankrupt. I was thinking about self harm for the first time in my life. I was using alcohol to numb myself and I was so confused about why I was so miserable - the harder I fought the worse I felt.

Somehow (not through bird shit, but I wish I had such a good story), I figured out that I had never learned how to be happy and decided it was time to figure out. I packed in a successful career and moved back to the USA. For the first time in my life, I started to think about who I am, who I wanted to be, what I want from my life, what activities I enjoy, what makes me happy, what do I want from my interpersonal relationships.

It took another 18 months, and then I got sober. My life is very much a work in progress - it’s a bit of a shit show at the moment, but that better than being disassociated and living someone else’s life. But it is MINE.


Wow you guys are doing well. I need to keep myself in check that this is not a competition on who can finish first :). Just a gentle reminder for us who tend to make comparisons :slight_smile:


These are the questions I’ve been having lately-since I’ve been sober- I think this book will help me move towards making the answers to those questions reality.


I’ve been reading the book for 2 months, slowly.
This is about you, no one else.
I shared my story, I was itching to, but I’ll let others contribute before sharing once again.


You make a good point. I need to keep that in mind. I was reading the stories here and thinking they’re so intense and that mine aren’t that bad, that if I share I’m going to sound whiny because in comparison, its just daily life stuff and these other people have been through truly traumatic events. But, it’s still my story and there are some things I’m not ready to share out loud so its not a comparison game. :revolving_hearts: I made it through the preface and part of chapter 1. I hope to make it through chapter 2 tonight. I’m not sure I have a great understanding of what codependency is yet so I want to understand that first before I post again. I had such a funny reaction from my two therapists. One is talk therapy, the other is medication management. The talk therapist said the book we chose is such a dry read and I let myself get a little dissuaded, but pepped myself back up and said I was going into this with an open mind. My medication manager got really excited and said this book is her bible. She said she goes back and reads it every couple of years as a refresher if she can tell she’s starting to engage again with toxic family members. Looking forward to getting into the book tonight.


Just purchased the book. I’m in. I needed something new to read!


No, don’t do that! I’m so glad you shared! It honestly gives me some perspective and there are some things that I’m not ready to share yet, but your share gives me a little hope that I might get brave enough to share. Maybe by the end of this process. :heart:


Definitely don’t! I never find myself comparing, only relating. I appreciate the ladies and gentlemen on this Forum… you guys are my voice.


@Kovrax, hey Daniel, if you hit the little circle with my face on this message-to the right, it will take you to the book we just started to read. Hopefully you can join us, we have only had a few people respond for the first part of the reading…


The parable with the cane… omg, yes. It immediately clicked yet I had to pause. It sounded so familiar… someone shared that with me (in the context of addiction) when I was getting help before my last relapse. I remember now that it made absolutely zero sense to me at the time. Wow.

Ah well, onward and upward.


Hello everyone, just posted about the topic of this book I guess, a bit of denial seething. Tired of the “work on yourself” answers, after working the 12 steps, I feel what is there more to learn! But I feel I’ve been lead to this book and will purchase immediately. Thank you @Lionfish :pray:t4:


Have only read the preface and intro so far, but just that little bit made me think. I have all these feelings of resentment towards my husband and I’ve never really been sure why. But after reading a little, I wonder of this resentment I feel is a sign of codependency? Definitely something I personally want to explore as I read this book.


Downloaded it. Read all the preface and intro. Definitely got me thinking. Have it on Audible as we!l so may well listen at work. I also started This Naked Mind the other day.


I think you’ll enjoy the lesson in the preface if you’re wondering what more is there to learn :wink:


I ordered the book, will not receive it until Wednesday but I’m about to browse the library and see if they have it until I receive mine.


I’m sort of in the 12 Step seething thing. I dont wanna. But this sounded right. To each their own pace and space. This is where my head space is at, for the time being.


So I just read Jessica’s story, chapter 1, and boy do I have some thoughts and feelings. I’d love feedback on this. I’ve often felt like there are a million different reasons for “why” I drank. They really don’t matter in the end, because I never will again, but for this to make sense I have to explain this part. You would think my husband would be the Codependent one, because I was the one with alcohol abuse disorder (I personally don’t like the term alcoholic for ME, to save time I’ll probably shorten that to AAD), so in our relationship, he should be the one with codependency issues right? But even in the worst of my drinking, I was still the one cleaning, I was still the one paying all the bills and balancing the checkbook, I was still the one cooking and menu planning, I was running our lives except for the days that I said eff this and binged until I couldn’t get out of bed. I’m still somewhat resentful of this. I talk to my therapist about it and I tell her how appreciative I am about how much progress he’s made in sharing a living space with someone else and being considerate, but I still feel more like a parent sometimes than a spouse and I hate it. But how much of that is me being controlling and my preferences and how much of it is he just isn’t hygienic? Like, for shits sake man, don’t leave your socks shoved between couch cushions. And we just recently instituted a rule where the toilets are 100% his responsibility because I know for sure I’m not splashing the rim :nauseated_face: There’s 10 years worth of resentment and anger built up here and with me sober all the time now, I have no numbing agent to deal with his ability to just not see the grime in our home. I struggle with bi polar sometimes. I’m on medication but sometimes I still struggle. I’ve been in a depressive state for the last three months. It was an accomplishment for me to engage in the bare minimum of self care, getting up, shower, teeth, some make up and getting to work. I took care of bills twice a month because I had to but I hadn’t swept or mopped in over 2 months. I feel so disgusting even admitting that. It makes me want to cry. I just couldn’t muster the energy. I finally dragged myself out of it and swept and mopped around 2 weeks ago but I had to sit him down and tell him - if you see me obviously struggling like I have been, and you see dog hair on the carpet and spilled stuff in the kitchen, clean it. Why is this only my job? I work just as many hours a week as you - His answer is that he literally doesn’t see it. It’s just unacceptable to me. I can’t spend my life pointing out messes and asking someone else to do the things that I see with my own eyes because it puts the task of remembering everything on me. But, if he genuinely, truly doesn’t see it, am I being unfair? I’m sorry this is so long. I don’t know if this is some kind of lingering control issue from being raised in a family with alcohol issues. For the most part my dad was a functioning alcoholic. He drank beer every night but alcohol wasn’t really an issue until the holidays around his family every year and then the grandkids had to go hide in a back bedroom while 2 or 3 of the adults got into a screaming drunken fight. Then when I turned 15 we moved to Germany and my love affair with binging really began and mom and dads drinking got pretty out of control. I have so much more to say but that’s all for chapter 1.


I could relate to almost all of this Angie, I have this same issue with my household, and I literally am a parent and so I know exactly what you’re saying. But the above quote is like… summarizes my marriage in two questions/statements. Not necessarily “hygienic” but just who he is… And who am I to have the end all say on how things should be.