Love addiction and codependency are often confused as being the same type of relationship pattern. Yet, they are two different types of relationship/romantic distortions. Love addiction is closely related to the feeling of being in love and an addiction to it.
The love addict is desperately trying to meet their need of being loved. Codependency differs in that it is related to an addiction of being needed. The codependent person needs to be a caretaker and often neglects their needs altogether. Codependent people need approval and recognition in order to feel complete. Codependent relationships include romantic, work, social and family relationships. Love addiction relationships are typically romantic in nature.
Codependency occurs between two people who have distorted boundaries. The codependent person focuses solely on the needs of another and their own needs become secondary. A codependent person may find themselves enabling someone who is irresponsible, in active addiction or unreliable. A person with codependent behaviors may honestly feel that they are helping their loved on by enabling them. This is not the case.
The codependent person may also find their sense of worth and purpose by taking care of another’s needs. Common symptoms of codependency are intense interpersonal relationships, inability to be alone, controlling behavior, perfectionism, low self-esteem and sacrificing to take care of someone else.
Love addiction is not a diagnostic term. This type of addiction is starting to be observed and researched by experts in the field because it creates distress and long-term consequences. A love addict views love as a way to numb pain. This desire is similar to an addiction to gambling, drugs or alcohol. Love addiction is about obsession and using love and relationships to fill a void and treat past hurts.
Abandonment in formative years can be a precursor to love addiction. If the trauma of neglect has not been processed in a healthy way, a person may begin feeling that they need another person to feel whole. Symptoms of love addiction include falling in love quickly, inability to be alone, suicidal thoughts when a relationship ends and staying in abusive relationships.
Therapy and treatment are critical to overcoming love addiction and codependency. Treatment will help you process past abandonment and/or neglect. Treatment can teach you what healthy relationship boundaries are. Treatment can be instrumental in helping you understand that your self-worth is not based on another person or what you can do for other people.
Lasting recovery is more attainable than ever. Serving the greater Los Angeles area, Infinity Treatment Centers offers the highest luxury and privacy in residential treatment, along with a continuum of care options. Lasting recovery starts with infinite change. Change your life today. Call: (855) 608-8495