ENTERTAINMENT
03/26/2015 02:37 pm ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

How To Know If You're Codependent On Your Children

In the video above, Dr. Phil confronts a mom, Linda, who admits that she enables her 32-year-old drug-using son, pointing out that she meets this definition of co-dependency: Feelings and actions of another person affect you to the point of losing control of your own life. It’s one-sided, emotionally destructive, abusive verbally or physically.

Are You An Enabler?

When Dr. Phil pushes her, Linda also recognizes that her behavior is characteristic of someone who is co-dependent: excessive care-taking, low self-esteem, the need to be needed, only feeling important as it relates to the other, denial (e.g., ignoring, minimizing or rationalizing problems in the relationship), fear of anger, health problems, and addictive behavior.

Defining Your Authentic Self

When Dr. Phil asks Linda to grade her own paper, she admits, "Failed."

Dr. Phil tells her: "This is on you. You're the adult and he is the child ... Your job as a parent — all your jobs as parents — is to prepare your child for the next level of life. It's not to be liked by them, it's to prepare them for the next level of life."

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