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Codependent Behaviors Can Be Passed On Through Generations

Let’s say your great great great great great grandfather was an alcoholic. He was physically abusive toward your great great great grandfather, no matter what your great great great grandfather did to try and take care of his father. When your great great great grandfather had your great great grandfather, he swore that he would do things differently than his father did. Though your great great great grandfather wasn’t an alcoholic, he wasn’t the best father either. He did his best with what he had, but what he had was untreated trauma that he had no skills for coping with. He had everything he needed to satisfy the outside, but his insides were emotionally void. Your great great grandfather struggled to get the love and affection he needed from his father. Then, your great great grandfather had your great grandfather. Wanting to provide yet another different experience, your great great grandfather was a devoted father and husband to your great great grandmother- often giving of himself in more ways than he was capable. Your great grandfather learned that the only way to be loved is to give, so maybe it is better to withhold to a certain degree.

Not wanting to be the example of the giving tree like his father, your great grandfather had your grandfather and was a little more strict, similar to generations before him. Your grandfather was well guided, well formed, and lived in a structured household but lacked the emotional connection that your great grandfather was avoiding. When your grandfather had your father, he wanted to make sure he or your father never felt that way again- that lonely, abandoned feeling. Your grandfather did everything for your father, sometimes too much, and relied on him to supply the feelings to compensate for many years of feeling neglected. Resentful toward his father’s projections, your father had you and became fiercely emotionally independent, teaching you in many ways that he doesn’t need you. As a result, you have a deep need to be needed and you’re willing to do whatever it takes to be as needed as possible.

This is just one illustration of the generational cycle of codependency. From one generation to the next, behaviors are learned, rebelled against, mutated, evolved, learned, rebelled against, and so forth, always in an effort to control someone else and the effect that person is having on your life.


You get to break the chain of codependency. If you are struggling with codependency in your relationships and you’re turning to drugs or alcohol to cope, help is available. Enlightened Solutions provides partial care programs to men and women seeking transcendental transformation from addiction. Compassionate therapy in a comfortable and safe environment offers clients the opportunity to heal mind, body, and spirit.

For information, call us today: 833-801-5483.

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