Are you a co-dependent empath?
Indicate your agreement or disagreement with the following statements:
1. I am in a significant relationship with someone who is addicted to a substance or a behavior, someone who is depressed, or someone who is very needy. Yes___ No___
2. I often feel the weight of responsibility for others’ happiness and well being. Yes___ No___
3. I can’t say “no” without feeling guilty. Yes___ No___
4. I can accurately “read” other people by analyzing their facial expressions and tone of voice. Yes___ No___
5. When I am able to fix others’ problems, I feel strong and valuable. Yes___ No___
6. I feel that I have to protect people, especially the addicted, out-of-control, or depressed person in my life. Yes___ No___
7. I live in such a way that no one can ever say I’m selfish. Yes___ No___
8. I vacillate between defending the irresponsible person and blowing up in anger at him or her. Yes___ No___
9. I often relive situations and conversations to see if I can think of some way I could have done more or spoken better to relieve stress and solve problems. Yes___ No___
10. I feel very frightened of angry people. Yes___ No___
11. I am quite offended by personal criticism. Yes___ No___
12. To avoid feeling guilt and shame, I seldom stand up to people who disagree with me. Yes___ No___
13. I tend to see people and situations as “all good” or “all bad.” Yes___ No___
14. Though I try to please people, I often feel isolated and alone. Yes___ No___
15. I trust people too much or not at all. Yes___ No___
16. I often try to get people I love to change their attitudes and behavior. Yes___ No___
17. I tend to believe the addicted or depressed person’s promises, even if he or she has broken countless promises before. Yes___ No___
18. Sometimes I have a lot of energy to help people, but sometimes I feel drained, depressed, and ambivalent. Yes___ No___
19. I often give advice, even when it isn’t requested. Yes___ No___
20. I tend to confuse love with pity, and I tend to love those who need me to rescue them from their problems. Yes___ No___
21. I believe I can’t be happy unless others, especially the needy people in my life, are happy. Yes___ No___
22. I am often a victim in strained and broken relationships. Yes___ No___
23. I am looking for somebody who will love me completely and unconditionally. Yes___ No___
24. My thoughts are often consumed with the troubles and needs of the addicted or depressed person in my life. Yes___ No___
25. I feel wonderful when I can fix others’ problems, but I feel terrible when I can’t. Yes___ No___
Total: Yes___ No___
(my commentary on these questions can be found here – The difference between co-dependency and being an empath )
—If you answered “yes” to 6 or fewer statements, you probably have relatively healthy boundaries, confidence, and wisdom in relationships. You can care about people without feeling responsible for their choices.
—If you answered “yes” to 7-15 statements, your life is shaped to a significant degree by the demands of needy people in your life. You often feel responsible for the choices others make, and you try too hard to help them make the right ones. You would benefit from the input of a competent counselor or support group.
—If you answered “yes” to 16 or more statements, you have lost your sense of identity, and you are consumed by the problems of addicted or depressed people in your life. You can’t be happy unless you are rescuing irresponsible people from their destructive decisions. In reality, however, your hope for sanity and emotional health is not in that person getting well. You have to take steps to get well whether that person does or not. Find a counselor or support group to help you gain wisdom and strength.
Some common characteristics of codependency include:
worry or anxiety
“bending over backwards” to take care of others
not knowing or not trusting one’s own feelings
feeling guilty for “not doing enough”
feeling isolated or depressed
staying in bad relationships (or sabotaging potentially good ones)
trouble with emotional connection and intimacy
lack of energy
inability to set boundaries
inability to share (or experience) feelings (emotionally numb)
striving for achievement (at any cost)
(stolen from some Christian page…)
3 thoughts on “Are you a co-dependent empath?”
Gosh I cannot wait one more day…I hope I can learn to love myself SOON!!! I’m getting too old for this!
Please consider a 12-step program for codependents, e.g. CODA (Codepndents Anonymous) or Al-Anon which is for family / friends of alcoholics, also ACA (Adult Child of Alcoholics) if that fits. You will learn to love yourself and set boundaries. Check out In The Rooms for all these programs and more – http://www.intherooms.com. Healing is possible !