Melody Beattie in her book, The New Codependency says that some of the traits that people call codependent are not inherently bad. It’s okay to help people, in fact, helping people can be rewarding and meaningful. Doing people favors is a great thing, it builds relationships. Caregiving can help us to feel needed, it can be fun to help people. It’s all good…
To a point.
When the scale tips and all you have done is give give give, you feel depleted. Sometimes people get physically sick or depressed and anxious. Sometimes they get irritated with people, or start doing things like overeating, drinking too much, using drugs, playing computer games or scrolling through Facebook for longer than usual. You feel awful.
Yet, people keep asking you to do things for them and you keep doing them.
When you are a Giver, it’s what people come to expect. But something has to give and it doesn’t have to be your well being! You can learn how to make changes and communicate them to other people.
If you are experiencing Giving Overload, therapy can help, because before you can tell others, you have to get clear on what you want.