When you deal with the public, you encoutner all sorts of people. One day this week, a man and woman came in to book a trip with one of our travel agents. Watching this couple interact with each other made me have a very, very strong flashback to my childhood. Watching them made me remember a vow I had made to myself by the time I was about 8. The vow I made NEVER to marry a man like that!
The man was clearly in charge...of EVERYTHING. The woman's place was to sit silently and agree with everything he said. He clearly expected that. When she did offer a suggestion, he laughed and gave her a look that pretty much screamed "you are to be seen and not heard". It made my skin crawl.
In my childhood home, my mother was a strong force. She paid the bills, she did all the shopping, and even though she didn't work, she bought whatever she felt like buying, and she pretty much ran the house. That's not to say my Dad was a pushover--not in any sense of the word. But that's how they both liked things to be. Dad worked hard and brought home the money, and Mom was the household manager.
So even as a small child, whenever I used to see television shows where the man bossed the wife around, or the wife had to ask permission to breathe, this all seemed very foreign to me. Very foreign and very undesirable. I can clearly remember thinking, "if THAT'S what marriage is about, you can count me OUT!" Even at that very young age I knew what I did, and did not want when I grew up and got married. I would certainly marry a man like....well, David Cassidy, or Mike Brady of The Brady Bunch. He let Carol do whatever she wanted. She even had a maid! Or maybe Charles Ingalls from Little House On The Prarie. How kind and loving Pa was to Ma Ingalls! THAT'S the kind of men I dreamt of.
So when I saw that couple the other day, my mind went back to that place in time, so many years ago. And while my marriage has certainly had it's share of struggles, I DID marry a man who is sweet and good to me. Who lets me do pretty much anything I want to do. A man who would never boss me around or belittle me in public. So for that...I am happy.
A codependent person is one who has let another person's behavior affect him or her, and who is obsessed with controlling that person's behavior.
The following two "Detach" journal entries will give you a crash course:
"An Answer to a Prayer" dated Nov 1, 2008 "How Did We Wind Up Here?" dated Nov 2, 2008
About This Journal
In 2008 I had the life changing realization that there was a name for what I'd always felt was "wrong" with me. After 20 years of thumbing through various self-help books. I learned about codependence.
I began writing this journal to document my journey out. Over time, it's evolved into something more. While I still talk about codependence (I know now, it will never totally leave me), this blog has turned into the thumbprint of my life; a therapeutic journal for me to sort out a lifetime of thoughts and memories. I believe in being honest with myself and others, and when something is bothering me, I reach out. With a support team of strong, smart women surrounding us, we can all continue to grow. I'm trying to live my best life, in pursuit of a Healthy Mind, a Healthy Body.