Love can be exhilarating, especially at the very beginning of a relationship. Everything you experience with your partner feels so new and overall amazing, and you think how nothing can go wrong.
Well some things can go wrong, including complete emotional dependency on your significant other.
Emotional dependency is when a woman allows others (like a significant other) to affect her feelings and emotions, and depends on them for happiness, etc. This is giving complete control to others over a woman’s own emotions. This is unhealthy and can negatively impact self-esteem, since self-esteem is dependent on others. This is different from having a balanced relationship, where two people have interdependence and allow other to affect them only slightly emotionally. According to one relationship site, it is impossible to love others and not give them some control, but there needs to be a balance. Complete independence does not allow people to form connections with others.
Mental Health America, a nonprofit association, defines co-dependency as “an emotional and behavioral condition that affects an individual’s ability to have a healthy, mutually satisfying relationship.”
Co-dependency as a broad definition is “dependence on the needs of or control by another,” according to Merriam-Webster. However, in the psychological sense, it is “a psychological condition or a relationship in which a person is controlled or manipulated by another who is affected with a pathological condition.”
One study stated that “seven million American women are depressed, and 40 million Americans, primarily women, have been labeled as codependent.”
Emotional dependency can also be found in people with dependent personality disorder, “a long-term (chronic) condition in which people depend too much on others to meet their emotional and physical needs,” according to MedlinePlus, a service of the National Institutes of Health.
Mary Lamia, a clinical psychologist and psychoanalyst in California, said in an e-mail that she has dealt with women who are dependent in relationships.