What Is a Codependent Marriage?

Did you know that staying in an unhappy marriage can raise your risk of stroke and early death? Men particularly are at increased risk of health problems due to unhappy marriages. 

A codependent marriage may not seem as toxic as other marital problems on the surface, but you definitely shouldn’t ignore it. Codependency is when one or both people in the relationship have an unhealthy reliance on their spouse. 

There’s a fine line between supporting each other and unhealthy reliance. When you’re in a codependent marriage, it’s not always easy to see clearly. However, if other people have picked up on probable codependency, this is a good sign you need to learn more about it. 

Here, we’ll review some classic signs of codependency. Read on to find out more. 

Codependent Marriage Symptoms 

The first symptom of a codependent marriage is self-esteem problems. This could affect you, your spouse, or both of you. 

When your internal monologue makes you believe you aren’t good enough, it’s not uncommon to over-rely on another person for praise and validation. However, this can also go the other way; you may take criticism from your partner extremely seriously. 

Additionally, people-pleasing and care-taking of your spouse to excess can indicate an unhealthy reliance. Of course, you should help them with struggles – but you are not their carer or parent. Allow your spouse to make mistakes without always stepping in to fix their problems. 

Finally, codependency often leads to poor boundary setting. Boundaries are essential for every type of relationship. However, people in codependent marriages have a tendency to surrender every fiber of their being to their partner. 

Remember, you should be your main priority, not your spouse. 

How to Fix a Codependent Marriage

The good news is that codependency can be corrected; every couple goes through marriage problems at some point, and codependency isn’t uncommon. 

Start with honest and open conversations. Focus on listening to understand, rather than listening to respond. If this is difficult for you, hire a therapist or mediator to guide your discussions. 

Most couples can resolve their issues through mediation. However, you may realize that you do not want to. If your marriage has run its course and you’re ready to move on, that’s okay too.

You should hire a skilled divorce lawyer to advocate for you. 

Do You Have a Codependent Marriage

Do any of the points above ring true for you? If so, you’re most likely in a codependent marriage. The good news is, it’s fixable. 

Becoming aware of codependency is the first step to fixing marriage problems. Why not sit down with your spouse and discuss how you’ll change and health from it? If that fails, seek some professional therapy or a divorce lawyer if necessary. 

Did you find this article helpful? If so, check out our other posts for all things health, happiness, and home.