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CoDA meetings

LifeDestroyer posted 12/8/2019 17:52 PM

My therapist suggested that I look for a CODA meeting nearby. Has anyone here ever gone to them?

xhz700 posted 12/8/2019 20:57 PM

I have. I am a BS, but I will help you in any way that I can.

LifeDestroyer posted 12/8/2019 20:59 PM

What are they like?

xhz700 posted 12/8/2019 21:03 PM

Talk. Similar to other 12-step groups.

I went to Al-ateen groups as a teenager, very similar to those. It's a safe space to talk and explore yourself, without judgment. I would guess that you aren't going to get a ton of direct advice, but you can hear how other people with similar issues have managed their tendencies.

If you're a codependent, your self-improvement journey is going to be all boundaries.

LifeDestroyer posted 12/8/2019 21:15 PM

I am codependent. I was looking up the meetings and read their examples of what a codependent person looks like, and I checked off pretty much all of the tendencies.

xhz700 posted 12/8/2019 21:58 PM


It might be helpful to look int your FOO and find out WHY you are the way you are.

xhz700 posted 12/8/2019 22:04 PM

I'm bad about checking threads at times... If you ever want to talk about codependency, you're welcome to shoot me a PM.

LifeDestroyer posted 12/8/2019 22:06 PM

Thanks XHZ

Thumos posted 12/9/2019 01:46 AM

For what it’s worth I have recently learned more about an increasingly emergent model for treating infidelity in marriages that focuses on betrayal trauma.

Betrayal trauma therapists tend to be skeptical of co-dependency as a useful model for infidelity situations because it pathologizes the victim — who doesn’t deserve to be pathologized.

In other words, subtle blameshifting.

In fact, a couple of podcasts were recently posted here on SI going into depth on betrayal trauma, and this point about “co-dependency” was made very explicitly.


LifeDestroyer posted 12/9/2019 06:09 AM

What does YMMV stand for?

xhz700 posted 12/9/2019 08:51 AM

Your Mileage May Vary

Thumos posted 12/9/2019 09:08 AM

There should be betrayal trauma therapists in your area. There are many who share practices together so that two different IC’s can work together as a team with a couple.

Sort of a form of “separate” couples counseling (without the obvious downsides of MC as misapplied to infidelity) where each IC is talking to the other (they don’t talk about a lot of detail, just check in with each other about the essentials of where each spouse is at the moment).

This has been fairly helpful for me the past two months. I find the great thing about betrayal trauma therapists is they are not interested in blameshifting, rugsweeping or old models that allow WW’s and WH’s to subtly blameshift. They keep waywards more accountable, in my opinion.

My WW’s IC and my IC are managing a formal disclosure process for us. This week, my WW will sit down with myself and our two IC’s where she will read aloud her narrative timeline for me for the first time.

Oddly, this coincides with the exact 3-year anniversary of D-Day.

LifeDestroyer posted 12/9/2019 09:14 AM

My therapist is not a betrayal trauma therapist, but she is a trauma therapist. My BH does not want us doing any form of MC, maybe if we ever reconcile, but not not while we are separated.

Thumos posted 12/9/2019 09:18 AM

Yeah we’re not doing MC and this is no way a form of that. I was just trying to explain the advantages of it in terms of two IC’s being able to share information with each other to some extent.

But plenty of people just do the IC without that.

LifeDestroyer posted 12/9/2019 09:27 AM

I think that's a great idea. I actually told him that if his therapist wanted to see me, I would. She had brought that up to him one time I guess.

gmc94 posted 12/9/2019 21:31 PM

I agree with Thumos as to benefits of relational betrayal model. However, I don't think it is mutually exclusive of COD. In my case, I had CoD tendencies separate & apart from the infidelity. I'd worked on a lot of it, but still had more to do after dday (or maybe the trauma of dday threw any past CoD work out the window?). I also (perhaps mistakenly) understood the CoD model to be about pathologizing the BETRAYED spouse in light of their reaction to dday (IOW, the BS is not CoD, but does act CoD after dday). I didn't think the "CoD model" was an issue or ran counter to a WAYWARD's CoD (though I do believe that merely focusing on the WS COD can, simply by virtue of limited time, energy, resources, etc., hinder the WS from truly "getting" the trauma to the BS). And.... I could be wrong :)

Having said that, my IC at the time (who was supposedly an expert in infidelity), did do some damage by jumping on my CoD and not the trauma (she doesn't "do" trauma work, and from what I've learned in my own infidelity journey, is probably some form of malpractice, given what is now known about trauma). I don't think anyone in the circle of healing can avoid the trauma. Not the WS (or their IC) or the BS (or their IC). It is pain. It is serious. It must be addressed and processed. It seems to me that even if the WS and BS will D, the WS understanding the trauma caused by the A is an important part of THEIR getting it, owning it, and ultimate healing - can one have empathy if they don't understand the pain caused? (and IMHO empathy is crucial to a WS' healing - regardless of what happens in the M). And I assume that is why most of the programs (for SA or couples intensives) seem to start with trauma as the 1st topic.

My WH is CoD in a HUGE way. He's never gone to any CoD meetings, but just last week attended his first Alanon meeting (our DD is an addict with some serious shit going on). So, maybe he will reap some benefits from Alanon, which has a lof of parallels to CODA. But, I do have to say that his IC focusing on certain aspects of his CoD (and not trauma - he sees the same IC I had) is probably a factor in the lack of progress and probable path to D that we are now at. I don't see how ANYONE can simultaneously be told to stop considering their BS' feelings (to address CoD reactivity) AND to create and show empathy for said BS (the definition of which is pretty much considering another's feelings). However, it seems CoD & trauma focus work in unison on things like control (ie a WS cannot control their BS' reactions - the TT in your case probably hit some chords on that front) or boundaries, or people pleasing, etc. Anyhow, my take on the trauma model (Breecker, Osterlind, Minwalla, Carnes, et al have been so very helpful to my learning and healing).

LD: I've been to CODA meetings. I've enjoyed them. I've not enjoyed them. If you are super nervous, you can start with a telephone meeting. Internet meetings are also offered, but in my experience have never been helpful (maybe that's an over 50 thing, i dunno). Personally, I prefer the phone meetings, but I'm more of an auditory learner and suspect that may be a factor.

There is a COD thread in the ICR forum on SI that you may find helpful. I read the "big' Melodie Beattie books - Codependent no more & the new codependence (and then bought a ton of used copies to give to friends/family). I've since read several others by Beattie, but none resonated quite the same as those two "biggies". I got some workbooks from CODA too. But TBH the one thing I enjoy and appreciate more than anything re: CoD is the daily meditation book. Every day has a little story or affirmation. I've got it on my phone and read the stories most days. Even on the days when it doesn't fully resonate, it prompts thinking (and sometimes I'll later understand how it does relate to my work).

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