It happens so fast sometimes we don’t even realize its happening! How does someone else’s problem all of a sudden become my problem? Because I let it happen, plain and simple. Sure there are a list of reasons why this can happen and they all seem so logical, yet taking on someone else’ problem actually creates problems. When my daughter was in the midst of her addiction, it crept up on me slowly. First there were the grades that started slipping and so I began intervening and talking to her teachers to find out assignments and what needed to happen so she wouldn’t fail. This took the stress off of her and put it squarely on me! This not only caused stress for me but taught her not to own her issues.
Even though my daughter is in recovery, I still need to be careful not to take on her problems. She has had situations where she has had a bill to pay or ticket to take care of. In the past she would tell me and sometimes not even ask for my help and I would jump and start coming to the rescue. Sometimes these situations are difficult and costly, but I don’t take on the problem for her. We talk about what she needs to do to take care of her issue. In the end, she handles it and she learns. If I take on her problems, she would be taught that she is not capable and she would not have learned. This is the power of understanding how my co-dependent behavior does not help, it hurts – both of us. I am committed to continue to own my problems and let others own theirs.