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Do You Sometimes Wonder
What is Missing in Your Life?

CODEPENDENCY/FAMILY OF ORIGIN PROGRAM - LIVING AUTHENTICALLY

A simple definition of codependency: The reliance on external sources of stimuli to feel good about oneself.

The roots of codependency are usually established in the Family of Origin. The biggest problem with codependency is that anything external can vanish in a heartbeat whether it is a relationship, a job, a home or any other material thing.

This program is designed to uncover the roots of the problem, look for recurring patterns and move to a new, healthy place of self-actualization - Living Authentically. Below is an outline of the program on a module by module basis.

Program Outline

Module 1

In module 1 you look at a number of themes which have likely been set up by your family of origin.

You start by examining any compulsive behavior you may have, and then look into how you may be “bound” by your behaviors and the family legacy.  Part of that is done by looking to see if your parents have some of the same compulsions and behaviors.

From there you examine your self esteem and how the way you view yourself, drives the way you interact with others.  Then, you look at how denial and repression play a role in your behaviors.

As you approach the end of Module 1, you examine how you have tried to make your life better by trying to change things you can’t change and how your life has been punctuated by extremes.

Module 2

Module 2 starts with a look at how much care and nurturing you received when you were growing up.  From there, you examine your relationship with money as it often gives clues to how you view your worth.

You may begin to see how feelings of unworthiness and the need for love and attention were set up in your family of origin.

The balance of the module focuses on denial and how dysfunctional families create a denial culture.  You look at how you may have suffered various forms of abuse and how that helped to create the culture of denial in you and in your family system.

Module 3

Module 3 is about anger.  You examine how it was demonstrated in your family and how those demonstrations of anger impacted you and set up your own patterns of dealing with anger.

You also were asked to look at some people you have anger towards and learned about a process of forgiveness.

Module 4

Module 4 focusses on abuse.  You are asked to be open minded and consider a number of forms of abuse and whether or not they occurred in your family of origin.  Then you are asked how living in the family system you grew up in, may have carried over into the way you deal with your family or other relationships.

Module 5

In module 5, you examine how we unconsciously re-create our family of origin’s system.  We do things our parents did, that we vowed we would never do.  And we often marry one or the other of our parent’s personality types.

You look at “magical thinking” – the “what ifs”, and “if onlys” that you did as a child and how you may still be doing magical thinking today.

You wrap up Module 5 by taking a brief look at the roles of guilt and shame.

Module 6

In Modules 1-5 you examine the family of origin and its dysfunction.  In Module 6 you begin to look at moving toward a healthier belief in yourself.

You complete a brief chronological look at significant events in your life and then start to evaluate your current relationships and how your history is playing a role in them.

Module 7

Module 7 is the first of a two part relationship inventory.   You look at your family and determine how the love and nurturing was divided between family members.  Then you examine  some specific events and how they shaped you.

You then determine what roles you were assigned in the family and how you participated in the family system.

You examine relationships outside your family and determined how certain “themes” appear in all of those relationships.

Module 8

Module 8 is the second part of your relationship inventory.   It is expanded to include everyone outside of your family with whom you have had emotional (not necessarily romantic) relationships.  These include same sex relationships, opposite sex relationships and authority figures.

You then examine patterns in your relationship history.

You look at your relationship with yourself and go through an exercise to find out what messages play in your head and how they impact the way you relate, and how you can improve on those internal tapes.

You examined gender roles and how your views on gender impact your relationships.  Finally, if you are spiritual, you looked at your relationship with God or your Higher Power.

Module 9

Module 9 looks at codependency as a form of addiction and describes the addictive cycle.  It gets you to view unhealthy relationships as the addictive agent.   You examine the unhealthy relationships in your life as well as other behaviors that may fit into the description of an addictive agent.

You closed this module by looking at boundaries and moving to healthier relationships and balance.

Module 10

In Module 10, you start the process of moving on – to a new, healthier lifestyle.  You examine the ways you are tied to the family and how that keeps you in your codependent cycles.  

You also look at the roles you were assigned in your family of origin and how you may be still fulfilling them today.

You write a letter to each of your parents to let them know (maybe for the first time ever) the full range of your feelings towards them and the way you were raised.

Module 11

In Module 11, you learned of the necessity of grief as part of the process of letting go and moving on.  You look at the various areas of your life where you are experiencing grief and you are given a process for helping you to process it.

Module 12

You begin module 12 with a further examination of the Basic Personal Assumptions which you have about yourself and some ways to overcome the negative ones.

You look at where your present relationships are, on an unhealthy to healthy scale and develop some strategies to work on deficiencies.

You determine if your relationships were either overly dependent or overly independent and look at ways to correct them, create balance and find a new freedom and happiness.

You had little or no control over the story you were raised in but you can write the ending.