Codependency

You Deserve To Not Feel Guilty For Having Healthy Boundaries

The more I give, the more I'm taken for granted. I've been giving and giving my whole life. When will it be my turn?


It’s the same routine. You wake up next to your partner and give each other an emotionless good morning kiss.

You both wake up and get ready for your day.  You are there with them and yet you could just as easily be alone and you'd feel the same. Maybe better, even - at least then there wouldn't be a constant reminder of how empty your relationship has become.

You wish there was more of a connection between the two of you but you don’t know why there isn’t. 

You both go to work.  You like your work because your coworkers are nice, especially that one coworker who has been giving you a little extra attention. It feels nice. Maybe too nice? You’re starting to get worried...and excited. You know it can’t turn into anything because you are already in a relationship, but you can’t help but imagine what it would feel like to be with somebody that talked to you and cared about your day like they do.  

You go back home and, no surprise, nothing is done.  Dinner still needs to be made and the house still needs to be cleaned.  Your partner is home but is doing their own thing – playing video games, on their phone, drinking, whatever.  What they are not doing in engaging with you.

You start your usual house duties while in your head thinking about how ungrateful and unsupportive your partner is, wishing they would ask to help you out for once. Or even just come and be with you and show you affection and care that you exist.  

At some point in the night, frustration turns into an argument about how they don’t care about anything and never listen and about how you are always nagging.  You go to bed, thinking about how you have not been intimate in months. Although you know you are not the reason, you cannot help but think maybe it is because they are not attracted to you anymore, maybe they have someone else, maybe there is something wrong with you. 

You eventually talk it out and he apologizes, yet nothing changes. 

You cannot tell your family or friends how truly unhappy you are because they just tell you to leave your partner. And you don’t want to - you're confident they'll change.

Being this unhappy affects your mind and spirit and spills over into other areas of your life. 

You are anxious, unhappy, unsatisfied, and cannot even think of the last time you did something to take care of yourself.
Why am I feeling depressed?

Things have to change, but what? You do everything you’re supposed to and it is still not enough!

You’re so used to putting others' needs before your own, you have no idea where to start. The thought of doing something for yourself seems so foreign. Wrong, even. 

You give yourself entirely to your partner or family, hoping that you’ll get some of that attention in return but knowing deep down that you won’t. 

You get a half-hearted thanks now and then, but only if you ask for it. 

But as much as that hurts, deep down a part of you wants it that way, because you want things done right. And you know that if anything is going to be done right, it’s going to have to be you that does it!

You’ve worked so hard and gotten so little in return for so long, you’re starting to turn to some pretty self-destructive behavior.

There’s the affair you’re considering. Or maybe your partner has started to be verbally or emotionally abusive. Perhaps you’re starting to question your values, considering throwing it all away and just doing whatever you want. Or maybe you’re starting to use substances to cope. Almost certainly your sleep is shot, and it is getting harder to keep depression and anxiety at bay. 

Something’s gotta give, but you have no idea where to start! 

You’ve researched the term “co-dependent” and a lot of it hits the nail on the head: 

    • Wanting to control everything to the point that nobody else can be involved, then getting resentful when people won’t help you.
    • Choosing partners that are “broken” so you can fix them. At first that’s how you felt needed and loved; now you just feel tired and resentful. 
    • Your poor boundaries allow people to take advantage of you. You find yourself saying “yes” when you feel “no” almost daily. 
    • Expecting people to reciprocate your sacrifice and service, but not telling them what you need.

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Now, imagine waking up with a genuine smile on your face because you are truly happy!  You are waking up next to the person you want and who wants you more than anyone else.

You go to work where you are thriving because your mental and emotional states are healthier.  You feel invigorated to have a job where you feel like you are contributing and you matter.  

You come home and your partner has done some of the housework already. You each carry your share of the housework without either of you having to nag. You both work as a team to get dinner and the house ready.  You spend the night away from your phones and instead doing something together – playing your favorite board game, watching a show, etc.

You feel physically and emotionally attached to your partner. Things are not perfect but you have the skills to work through problems and grow.

Things are working out.

You're standing up for yourself without feeling guilty.
People are respecting you because you've learned to respect yourself. 
You're taking care of the people that matter without losing yourself in the process.

It is possible to get there. You already possess everything you’ll need to make the journey. We’ll help you discover that, and walk beside you along the way.


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We can help!

We helped hundreds of people through your challenge. We know what the journey is like. We can help you:

  • Say “yes” when you feel “yes,” and “no” when you feel “no” without feeling guilty
  • Teach people how to treat you. You’ll still meet their needs, but you’ll carry yourself in a way that requires others meet yours as well. 
  • Be more assertive.
  • Going for what you want at work and your home life without guilt or shame. 
  • Taking care of yourself while remaining connected to others in a healthy way.
Meet Dr. Shelly Middleton, the Davis Group’s codependency expert.

Dr. Middleton knows what it is like to feel lost in the cycle of serving others while receiving little in return. And she knows what it takes to gain self-respect and the respect of others. 

Take a step towards a happier life by scheduling your first appointment below!


Image Michelle Hutchings

Dr. Shelly Middleton, LMFT

Helping You Teach Others How To Treat You

Schedule an Appointment with Dr. Middleton