Step 1: Admitting Powerlessness

We admitted we were powerless over our addiction – that our lives had become unmanageable

As a co-dependent person, this is an incredibly difficult admission to make. It’s even more difficult to fully accept and believe wholeheartedly. At least it has been for me.

I have spent the last 16+ years of my life striving to fix my primary qualifier, Evron, the man I love and the father of my youngest child. I have also spent that time trying to mold, mend, and manipulate others in my life, especially my two oldest children, who are now adults, into loving, accepting and seeing the things I see in Evron.

The fact of the matter is that broken, wounded, and hurting people are drawn to and attracted to each other like opposing magnetic poles. The areas of psychic, mental, and emotional delay and damage are equal and opposite, thereby creating an irresistible and undeniable field of attraction.

As a child I was powerless over the emotional and psychological neglect and abandonment I experienced. I learned self-reliance and self-containment at a young age. I was part of the generation that earned the term latch-key kids. I learned to think, speak, and act rationally in order to communicate with the people in my world. By the middle of my adolescence I was the only functional adult in my private life. The legal adults were so caught up in their relationships and traumatic lives that it fell on me to handle the adult responsibilities.

However, to the world at large I was just another teenage girl in the mid-80’s and I didn’t have legal power or authority to act on the things I believed it was my responsibility to take care of since none of the adults in my life could or would.

I saw my hopes and dreams of achieving something better and different from the damaged lives of those who had preceded me disintegrating. I was 16 years old, feeling useless, trapped, thwarted, hopeless, and helpless. These are the feelings that have driven me throughout my life and my relationships ever since.

27 years ago, this month I succeeded in running away from home. I carried with me the internalized distorted beliefs that I was the only one who could fix things and that I would do my best but it would never be enough because I didn’t have what it took to succeed where everyone else in my life had failed.

I decided that I even though I wasn’t able to accomplish what I needed being where I was and relying on the people in my life, I would find the people who would help me make the changes. The thing was I attracted and was attracted to the wrong people, and kept winding up in helpless situations.

By the time Evron and I met, I was determined to be powerless no more.

I’m tired. Exhausted really. I’m sick in mind and body. For over 20 years I’ve been repeatedly diagnosed with depression and fibromyalgia. The symptoms of both, I have come to believe, are rooted in 30-40 year old feelings and thoughts founded on people, places, and events I was powerless over, but have been striving to overcome by my own power and will in my words and actions in all of my relationships ever since.

I am powerless over the people in my life. I do not have the power to change their thoughts, feelings, attitudes, choices, words or actions. My efforts to do so have damaged my relationships with loved ones and ended relationships with others I cared about and respected. My co-dependency has cost me my dreams, put me in debt, and compromised my mental and physical health. My life is unmanageable.


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