“Not my monkeys, not my circus.”
Have you ever been so focused and hell bent on your own recovery and healing that you forget that others are responsible for their own path too? Hands in the air, all around.
It’s virtually impossible to coexist in human relationships and not fall into that trap from time to time. The trap of where do I end and where do you begin is a tricky little trap to dance around. It shows up in:
- romantic relationships
- parent child relationships
- child parent relationships
- work relationships
- therapeutic relationships
- all of the relationships
Sometimes we call this interdependence, the state of working together and coexisting to support one another on their path in life.
And in other circumstances we call this codependency. Codependency is a dangerous place to dwell in relationship land. It says: “You have to be THIS way in order for me to feel okay. And if you’re not THIS EXACT WAY or do THIS EXACT THING, I will inevitably fall apart/drink/disappear/get high/cheat on you/not work/scream/yell/shutdown/not have sex with you (and the list goes forever on).
Codependency also says: “I will not take responsibility for my healing work/growth/generational trauma so I will ignore it and suppress it and pass it on to you.”
Unfortunately, loads of us baby boomer kids got the second half of that outline whether we wanted it or not. Thing is, it’s nobody’s fault. It’s not that long ago that we all started to learn about feeling and healing and health. So if this is you, maybe the way you are or how you learned and grew was simply a byproduct of a social construct; and not the intended abuses and neglect we read about on the Internet. Sometimes people are the way they are because that is what they were told and taught to be.
It’s okay to not take on the work of others. It’s okay to recognize that certain things, even in your healing journey, are beyond your control or influence.
In fact, I would suggest the sooner you land there, the faster tracked you will be to getting one step closer to wholeness. Doing the work isn’t always about doing work. Sometimes healing comes in the form of inaction.