A Wall or Caretaking Co-Dependency

There is a little ‘caretaker’ in everybody. When we see someone in trouble we have the natural instinct to help. It is when this instinct grows unmanageable that caretaking can become a pathology that doesn’t help the needy and serves to hurt the caretaker. Caretaking is good when the caretaker knows when to stop caretaking and allow the needy to struggle on their own to develop the skills and strength to help themselves. Caretaking is bad when you carry the baby until the baby┬ánever learns to walk on its own. Caretaking is bad when it serves to be the only way the caretaker can establish a sense of worth. Then it is the needy working the needy to no good end for either. Very often the caretaker will give away all they have to give and end up crippled in their own life. Sometimes they caretake to the point they are enabling the needy to continue living a dysfunctional lifestyle. Sometimes the enabler compulsively sacrifices so much that they end up angry at the needy but unable to stop enabling them. They begin to see the needy as a burden they can’t put down.

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