Codependency-Free Holidays (Rule One)
The holidays are upon us, and the reaction seems much like all the years before. For some, it’s all joy and love and peace. They are excited, truly and deeply, about whatever series of experiences generally occur in their respective worlds between now and the first week or so of January. For them, it is indeed a magical time of year.
But for others, Thanksgiving marks the start of an absolutely maddening, completely hysterical spell of over-committed and over-priced, self-induced misery.
Yes, you read that right… self-induced.
I am writing this for those who strive to simply “survive” the holidays. You know who you are. Those who say yes, yes, yes to every invitation, whether they actually want to be there or not. They spend money they don’t have because they are afraid to not give, or they spend the money they do have in a way that doesn’t bring them joy. They do what they “should” do over and over again until they can no longer remember what they want to do.
That’s crap. Stop trying to survive. Take back your life. The holidays are for living, for thriving, for loving… just like every single other time of the year.
If you’re not enjoying your life, or your holidays, I want you to know that it doesn’t have to be this way.
The makings of a codependent adult…
Addicts are…whatever manner of crazy, and the codependent becomes reactive to the addict, losing their own internal centering. It is a coping mechanism that allows young people to survive being forced into relationships with adult addicts (i.e., parents). Once being in the relationship is no longer forced (we grow to adulthood), if we continue to use that coping mechanism, it graduates into our own problem. The coping mechanism that was a survival tool in childhood becomes an ineffective, disempowering, self-defeating, and often destructive tool in our adult relationships.
Codependency ruins everything, including the holidays. This is the perfect time of year… to let it go.
Together, let’s make this a codependency-free holiday season. I have some rules; here is the first one:
Rule One (for a Cody-Free Holiday): Protect yourself from mean people.
If going home for the holidays means not being yourself, love yourself enough to not go home.
When push comes to shove, you–the real you–is all that you really have. If you need to pretend to be someone else in order to feel welcome, don’t go. Find a new place, a new tradition, a new way to be you because you are perfect just the way you are. If the people in that place you call home can’t love you for the truth of who you are, then that place isn’t your real home.
Home is a place where we are loved completely.
Home is a place where the love of others teaches us how and encourages us to love ourselves.
Home is a place that exists deep within us, and also far beyond us.
Home is a safe place.
So, there it is. No more. Ever. Stop allowing people to be mean to you. I don’t care if they were drunk. I don’t care if they “didn’t mean it” or if they were all stressed out because of the whateverthehell was going on that day. I don’t care if you’re gay. I don’t care if you don’t eat meat on turkey day. I don’t care if you don’t want to pray the way they do, or if you do want to pray and they don’t. I don’t care. I don’t care. I don’t care.
And what I really want is for you to not care, too. Any questions?
Image Credit: malczyk by Flickr