CoDA Weekly Reading

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Each week, subscribers will automatically receive an email with a new "recovery reading". Hopefully, viewing this member created work will provide subscribers with thoughts to reflect upon during the remainder of the week.

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Archived Messages

 

CoDA Weekly Reading 10/12/21

October 12th 2021 PDT

Control Leads to Loneliness The more I tried to control, The lonelier it got. My expectations raised, And those around me scattered. My disappointments leaked out, And those around me disappeared. Resentments boiled inside me... And those around me were quiet. It was then that I looked And I realized why I was alone. The more I tried to control, The lonelier I got. That was the day I accepted the first step. I finally admitted I was powerless over others and tha ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 10/5/21

October 5th 2021 PDT

My Sixth Year Chip June 2021 This past year has been challenging for everyone, including me. When the Covid lockdown started, I was amazingly comfortable with the isolation and ignoring my CoDA recovery work. Life was fine and I now had another free weeknight. Then a member of our group decided to head up an online meeting for our group and reached out to several of us to assist in the process. I was enjoying the online meetings, even with our smaller group and with the new people drifting i ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 9/28/21

September 28th 2021 PDT

Hi CoDA Family, I've been in CoDA since 4/28/21. I'm getting in touch with my inner child. I thank the program so much for introducing me to him. He has been confined and sad for a long time. I knew I was in turmoil but didn't know an inner child existed, much less how to parent one. I've been in AA 35 years and Al-Anon 10; they prepared me for CoDA. My inner child and I were traumatized early in life, and it took years of therapy and 12 Step work before we could face each other. To make matt ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 9/21/21

September 21st 2021 PDT

I see. I see me. I see my worth and value. I see my excuses and my avoidance. I see my innate goodness. I see my denial and my control. I see my strength and determination. I see my obsession and my fear. I see my guilt and “overreactive conscience” controlling my actions and dependence. I see my budding power and divinity. I see my ability to say “no” or “yes.” I see my growth and progress. I see me. I finally see me. I see you. I see your value and wort ...Continue Reading

CoDA: Missing Meeting In Print Issues

September 14th 2021 PDT

Hello Esteemed Reader, The Co-NNections committee is reaching out to you for help. When the CoDA.org website was revamped a few digital copies of Meeting In Print issues were lost. If you downloaded or printed any of the following issues, we'd appreciate you letting us know so that we can put them back up on the website. We are missing: Edition 1 (September 2016) Edition 2 (December 2016) Edition 3 (March 2017) Edition 4 (July 2017) Edition 5 (September 2017) Edition 12 (June 201 ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 9/14/21

September 14th 2021 PDT

This is a poem I wrote when I decided I was ready to start working the STEPS. What if today I started a new chapter? A new beginning. What if I found myself with no one to fix? What if I decided to take control over my life and not yours. What if I realized my loneliness was because I didn’t feel needed anymore? What if my heart, mind and soul finally admitted that I was truly codependent. What if my heart was pounding now, really pounding. What if I had allowed myself to accept t ...Continue Reading

CoDA Co-NNections Meeting In Print Issue #20 Is Out

September 7th 2021 PDT

[1]https://coda.org/wp-content/uploads/CoDA-MiP-September-2021-Ed.-20.pdf Meeting in Print (MiP), a CoDA Co-NNections subcommittee, is proud to announce that the latest issue of its publication, themed "I Am Still Me" MiP is a quarterly publication that gives you the feeling of a live meeting while opening up space for texts, poetry, artwork and even music to help the CoDA community towards recovery. Each edition contains the following elements required in a CoDA group: * Welco ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 9/7/21

September 7th 2021 PDT

Experience, Strength, and Hope Here I sit at the end of yet another romantic relationship ravaged by addiction and all its tenant sufferings. The irony is after being in recovery for a decade, I thought I had finally found a healthy person to fully partner with. As I've just discovered, he too has untreated mental illness, untreated addiction and pent up childhood abuse and trauma, like many of the men I've chosen all my life. The most beautiful part of this most recent break up is I haven't los ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 8/31/21

August 30th 2021 PDT

Hello! I am a codependent in search for recovery. To me, being in recovery is being in peace. Obvious, that I, like a good codependent, am always attracting situations that take out my inner peace. CODA program helps me identify these situations and disconnect myself from them. However, many times, I don't want to. In those moments, I suffer. In those moments, I need a lot of help from my High Power, to have the strength and courage to do His will, not mine. I have a strength beli ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 8/24/21

August 24th 2021 PDT

I am a recovering addict clean for 4 months now and I have just discovered through CODA that I am a very co-dependent person also. I do struggle with depression along with high and low mood swings at times. I live each day absolutely one day at a time. With childhood trauma, a family that lived to gaslight me it seems, and addiction outcomes from using, all resulting into PTSD. I've finally been directed plainly enough for my very confused mind to understand and engage in CODA that has really ope ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 8/17/21

August 17th 2021 PDT

God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change I was raised by a narcissist mother who turned her back on me when I first got married. My spouse was verbally abusive and an alcoholic. I ended my first marriage five years ago only to find myself in two more relationships with narcissists. CoDA helped me to dig deep into myself and to figure out my need to be in toxic relationships and my fear of being alone. I discovered I had huge abandonment issues from childhood because my mot ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 8/10/21

August 10th 2021 PDT

“A Higher Power gifted opportunity” My name is Dan and I am a 34 year old grateful member living in Madrid, Spain. I have been coming to the program long enough to know I want to continue to seek prolonged recovery from the effects of the family illnesses of addiction and alcoholism. Since my journey in recovery, I have had plenty of opportunities to work with two sponsors on resentments. I came into the program burdened with many resentments towards my mother. I blamed her for all my trials ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 8/3/21

August 3rd 2021 PDT

“We are free. I am free.” search of recovery. To me, being in recovery is being in peace. Obviously I, like a good codependent, am always attracting situations that take out my inner peace. The CoDA program helps me identify these situations and disconnect myself from them. However, many times, I don't want to. In those moments, I suffer. In those moments, I need a lot of help from my Higher Power, to have the strength and courage to do His will, not mine. I have a strong belief t ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 7/27/21

July 27th 2021 PDT

“CoDA has really opened the door for me” I am a recovering addict, clean for 4 months now, and I have just discovered through CoDA that I am a very codependent person also. I do struggle with depression along with high and low mood swings at times. I live each day absolutely one day at a time. Childhood trauma, a family that lived to gaslight me it seems, and addiction outcomes from using substances have resulted in PTSD. I've finally been directed plainly enough for my very confused mind to ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 7/20/21

July 20th 2021 PDT

The Sunken Place I wrote this as I was entering another relationship where I knew I would lose myself to their desires and wishes, where I already saw the pattern happening that I had played out so many times before. I wrote it before I knew I was codependent or why I kept going through this. I wrote this because I was terrified, because I felt like I was about to lose myself all over again, and nothing is scarier than that. The Sunken Place My weakness brings me to my knees But not in ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 7/13/21

July 13th 2021 PDT

Hot Mess My life before CoDA, well let’s just say it was a “Hot Mess” I have been in one toxic relationship after the other. I found myself always choosing partners that had a long laundry list of problems: drugs, alcohol addictions, emotionally unavailable. For as long as I can remember, I was accepting of my partners’ unhealthy habits, even thrived on them in a way I guess you could say. Thinking I could be the hero in their lives. Yes, I was going to be the one to make a difference in the ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 7/06/21

July 6th 2021 PDT

MY STORY as I grow in recovery, I grow in greater self-love ~ in the discovery of who I am. All else fades away. The pain gets less every day. As balance comes to play~ I know one day this skin I'm in, will feel easier to live in~ one day at a time. By, Alison M. - 2/2021 Everybody in CoDA has a story to tell. Sharing yours may help thousands of codependents still suffering. We are always accepting submissions. Please contribute your experience, strength and hope by ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 6/29/21

June 29th 2021 PDT

‘Loyalty to Self Needs Always Comes First’ I was raised to be pleasing to other people. On both sides of my family, my job was simple. Make us look good. Obey. And keep your mouth shut. I became so adept at these things that I completely lost any sense of my true identity. At the age of 19, I was suspended from college in an alcohol-related incident that had codependence and sex addiction at its roots. Exiled to a farm in California (a nice farm, but still), I was blessed to receive a book from ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 6/22/21

June 25th 2021 PDT

‘Living Gratefully’ Through my recovery in a 12-step program, I have learned to live the type of life I was created for, happy and in peace. I discovered what Carmen thinks, feels, and wants. How Grateful I am. Before Coda, I did not know what the purpose of my life was. I will live a life surrounded by my codependent patterns, a disaster, chaos just by simply reacting to what happens at the moment and not thinking of healthier choices. My emotions were imbalanced. My codependence patterns w ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 6/15/21

June 15th 2021 PDT

I am feeling grateful to be recovering and recovered from codependent behaviors in my life. I was raised in a large family - with much-disorganized dysfunction and verbal, emotional, and physical abuse. As I write this, I do not remember having low self-esteem as mine is so strong now and I act upon my courage instead of fears constantly. As a child control was not given to me, so I based my esteem on taking it by getting good grades and trying lots of sports to “own” my body. Yet I so nee ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 6/08/21

June 8th 2021 PDT

“In this moment I know this pain will end and I am grateful.” I’ve lived long enough on this earth to have experienced various painful moments, even painful seasons of my life. I’ve felt loss at the death of a loved one and loss of a loved relationship. I’ve also experienced the extreme joy of bringing new life to the world. Pain and ecstasy in just that one experience of childbirth. I’ve known joy and happiness. Both are as necessary to me as day and night are needed. I need a time to be active ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 6/01/21

June 1st 2021 PDT

"Thank You, God, Now I Know” My introduction to Coda came to me via an assistant to my psychiatrist who really did understand my life and me better than the doctor herself. Like most people during that time, it came being given a book, dealing specifically with the characteristics of codependency and through the assistance, and working with the doctor after a hospital episode for depression. It was terribly painful reading certain parts of the book and so I was advised that I should probabl ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 5/25/21

May 25th 2021 PDT

‘‘I Thought I Knew What Love Was’’ I thought I knew what love was. I thought I had been in love. For a long time, the love I knew was egotistical. It was jealous, it was possessive, it was controlling and it was heavy. It was phone calls asking where each other was and who was there. It was phone checking and name calling throughout arguments. It wasn’t love it was unhealthy obsession. Then in my thirties I found a knew love, an unfamiliar love, a soulful love. It was light, it was joyful, i ...Continue Reading

CoDA Co-NNections Is Seeking New Members

May 20th 2021 PDT

Do you love reading? Do you benefit from hearing recovery stories? Do you love listening to the heartbeat of someone's writing? Do you have a knack for editing? Do you love helping someone make their voice heard? Are you drawn to doing service work, but are scared of what that might mean? We need you- Because being scared is normal and humble. Step out with HP and serve with us, as we grow in our own recovery while carrying the message to codependents who still suffer. Once a week the ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 5/18/21

May 18th 2021 PDT

‘I am a work in progress’ I grew up in an alcoholic home and then married an alcoholic/substance abuser. 3 years ago, I took control of my life and left my ex-husband but have recognized a patterned in myself of a codependent. In the three years I took the time to find myself and to love myself but find I am a magnet to those that are addicts or recovering addicts. I am always looking to "fix" others and love others and trying to fill the void that is absent in me. I recently relapsed ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 5/11/21

May 11th 2021 PDT

The Road to Serenity and Peace Part of learning to love myself is being unafraid to show myself. I am an artist and a poet even if not professionally. There is nothing more authentic to being me, than revealing this side of myself that I usually keep hidden within the pages of endless journals never really seen. This year, I challenge myself to be authentic in all ways. I am learning to rid of my Peacemaker self, embrace my ugly shadow self, and learn to love all of me. I struggle immensely whe ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 5/4/21

May 4th 2021 PDT

Systems: A Magic Word The Welcome has this extra word in it that doesn’t seem necessary on first reading. “...codependence...is born out of our sometimes moderately, sometimes deeply dysfunctional families and other systems.” Why not just families and other dysfunctional groups? What is meant by systems? Coda documents, especially the Welcome, say a lot in a few words. Thinking this through has freed me from blaming and shaming by reminding me I have been formed and continue to be swayed by ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 4/27/21

April 27th 2021 PDT

Today’s Meeting today's meeting is for shedding old patterns and and learning anew today's meeting is for affirming my good and sharing my truth of pain. today's meeting is for empowering and recovering from shame. Everyday a meeting, one day at a time, healing my story for God's glory. Sara Everybody in CoDA has a story to tell. Sharing yours may help thousands of codependents still suffering. Please contribute your experience, strength and hope by emailing your ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 4/20/21

April 20th 2021 PDT

Codependent Dollhouse At 8 years old, I had 4 gorgeous dolls and one short stocky, sarcastic doll who would cut the other dolls down to size by bombarding them with humorous sarcasm and wit, leaving them confused and put in their place. I really identified with this short doll, but where did I learn the sarcastic wit? I felt my family was a big part of that. Always saying whatever it took to disarm me and keep me under the heel. I practiced, honed, and developed a biting wit. Sarcasm has al ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 4/13/21

April 13th 2021 PDT

Many Years I Struggled with My Thinking For many years I struggled with my thinking. I often occupied any spare time with worrying about other people and my relationships. I could sit in a room for hours and just think, and think, and think! In a sense, I felt comfortable and at ease alone with my thoughts, even the dangerous ones. Obsessing about other people was like my secret power. It seemed to get me the best things in life. I was a “good girl”, a rule follower, and a people pleaser. I got ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 4/6/21

April 6th 2021 PDT

‘I Always Thought Codependency Only Had to Do with Romantic Relationships’ I always thought codependency only had to do with romantic relationships, and since I didn’t have issues in that area, I didn’t think it applied to me. However, when I learned codependency can show up in any relationship, I soon realized I had been living my life in a way that was making me miserable and was starting to destroy my relationships with family members. To put it simply, I was becoming more and more obsess ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 3/30/21

March 30th 2021 PDT

In my worst of times, after naming the issue codependency, for relief I used to wait on the edge of my seat for Tuesday's CoDA readings. I used to cry a lot and wished that everyone understood my pain. Sometimes I pictured myself drawing and spelling my pain out to all my loved ones, in the forms of tantrums and self-sabotaging disasters. Now it's been two years since I joined and I would like to claim I feel healed in many places, but perhaps not ever yet fully. I catch myself all the time, won ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 3/23/21

March 23rd 2021 PDT

‘CoDA has Given Me a Space and Structure for Healing’ Growing up, I was rejected by my dad and enmeshed with my mom. What that meant for me was that I was left with no sense of self. I had to do exactly what my dad said or I would be shamed or punished, and I had to do exactly what my mom said because if I didn't, she would abandon me, I would be left with no one. Until joining CoDA, I continued to look for what I should think, feel, and do in others. I learned at an early age how to be an emot ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 3/16/21

March 16th 2021 PDT

"When I First Realized That I Was Codependent" So it starts out when I first realized that I was actually codependent, that it really hit me. I finally figured out WHY I was never comfortable just being alone in my own skin. I always had/have to be with someone to be happy. After a while, I started getting obsessed with it. And worried that I’ll always be alone. That’s when I realized there was something wrong. So I reached out for help. Someone mentioned “CoDA” meetings. And I thought ...Continue Reading

CoDA Co-NNections Meeting In Print Issue #19 Is Out

March 9th 2021 PDT

Meeting in Print (MiP), a CoDA Co-NNections subcommittee, is proud to announce that the latest issue of its publication, themed "Live In The Moment" MiP is a quarterly publication that gives you the feeling of a live meeting while opening up space for texts, poetry, artwork and even music to help the CoDA community towards recovery. Each edition contains the following elements required in a CoDA group: * Welcome * Preamble * Twelve Steps * Twelve Traditions Al ...Continue Reading

CoDA Co-NNections Meeting In Print Issue #19 Is Out

March 9th 2021 PDT

Meeting in Print (MiP), a CoDA Co-NNections subcommittee, is proud to announce that the latest issue of its publication, themed "Live In The Moment" MiP is a quarterly publication that gives you the feeling of a live meeting while opening up space for texts, poetry, artwork and even music to help the CoDA community towards recovery. Each edition contains the following elements required in a CoDA group: * Welcome * Preamble * Twelve Steps * Twelve Traditions Al ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 3/9/21

March 9th 2021 PDT

‘My Recovery and Kitties’ Near the beginning of covid, my recovery cat of 16+ years, Sam, got the "can't pee" issue. He had surgery to remedy that and came home with brain damage. His behavior told me he was not comfortable anymore; his quality of life was no longer good. Over time CoDA helped me understand that my cat trusted me to take care of him. To feed him, give him water, a cat box, attention, to brush him, help him when he wasn't feeling well. And part of this is also to re ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 3/2/21

March 2nd 2021 PDT

“Becoming myself” I’m going through the steps. When I went through the descriptions and wrote down which ones impacted my life, I laughed and said, “I’m screwed.” But I have an idea of what I need to work on. I was able to leave a toxic relationship that I stayed way too long in, and I have found some peace and contentment in my life. One step at a time, one day at a time, sometimes one minute at a time is all I can deal with. Through CoDA, I am becoming myself. Thank you and my higher ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 2/16/21

February 23rd 2021 PDT

“When I started to believe” I was raised by a narcissistic mother and married a narcissistic man. I was willing to change roles in my marriage. I was the breadwinner and he was the househusband. Despite having a masters in electrical engineering, he could not get a job in his field. The political climate and his nationality were the barriers. I had returned to school and gotten my nursing degree. I didn’t attempt to leave my emotionally abusive marriage until I witnessed my son imitating his ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 2/16/21

February 16th 2021 PDT

A Weekly Reading Higher Power for me is simply Truth. I have long been wondering what Higher Power means to me. I have feared that just leaving that to my inner pondering would lead to something covertly letting me off the hook. My patterns are deep and compulsive, influencing my thinking at least as much as my acting. How can I trust, then, a Higher Power of my own (flawed) understanding. Then I learned from a sacred book of a very foreign culture the statement, “There is but one God over a ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 2/9/21

February 9th 2021 PDT

“Sanity is acceptance of human imperfection.” I am so grateful to CoDA. I had lived a life not understanding that not everyone has shame to their core. I had thought my childhood did not really harm me but had then spent my life trying to prove I am worthy. I thought if I can be perfect then maybe I can get rid of my shame. I had given my higher power to my abusive father and did not know this. A year ago I was “over fixing” someone else thinking I was being helpful when she said, ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 2/2/21

February 2nd 2021 PDT

“The gift of experience, strength and hope” As I sit and reflect here in this moment, I do so as the most authentic version of myself that I have ever had the privilege of knowing. I found CoDA and myself in August 2019, following the encouragement of my therapist and at a point in my life where I had finally hit my rock bottom after 40 years of digging. It’s been over a year now and I can honestly say that the program and the fellowship have been an incredible blessing and continue to be in ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 1/26/21

January 26th 2021 PDT

<F~RAG<Men-TatiON< ‘‘Fragmentation: the process or state of breaking or being broken into small or separate parts.’’ I was raised under strict, condemning circumstances, which were cold feelings and not a warm nurturing environment. I had to learn survival skills, just to get through a day in my nuclear family existence. Fear was my sidekick, and alertness was my precautionary superpower which was in high gear. When I was sleeping at night and throughout the day I would case the joi ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 1/19/21

January 19th 2021 PDT

“A letter to myself” Hello, I would like to share an AHA moment when I was reviewing my notes. I am currently on Step Nine in CODA so I went back and reviewed Steps 4, 5, 6, 7, and 8. In Step 8 it mentioned make Direct Amends to all people you have harmed. Of course, I naturally made an Amend to my Higher Power but then came the AHA moment. The person I needed to make amends to was ME! So I wrote a letter to myself. Hopefully, my letter will help someone in their journey of recovery: Dear Li ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 1/12/21

January 12th 2021 PDT

“Entering CoDA has made me aware” After being in an eight year long relationship, where we broke up and returned four times, it came to an end. From the first breakup I knew I couldn't live without him, I just remembered the good. We tried it three more times, we were even going to get married, but again my deepest fear came back. I no longer trusted him. I couldn't look him in the eye anymore. However, when I was alone, I would forget that and I would want to return to this pointless relationsh ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 1/05/21

January 5th 2021 PDT

My Lizard Brain Existence I am a grateful, slowly recovering Codependent. I first thought that I had a cat and a dog as pets. However, recently I have discovered a whole other type of a pet which is very different and very destructive one called my lizard brain. I have been learning from my CoDA meetings, sharing, listening to others, as well as through seeing therapists and self-motivated reading on my own that most of my decisions are based upon fear. Fear of rejection, ridicule, the unk ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 12/29/20

December 29th 2020 PDT

“This journey of uncovering, discovering, and healing” From the outside looking in, my childhood was perfect. A mom, a dad, two kids, and a three car garage. As a family, we ran a second generation business and took a vacation at least once a year. I couldn’t even begin to count the number of friends who envied my life. My mom was the golden standard for polishing the appearances to the world, and no one ever really knew about her mental illness or my dad’s alcoholism. Being the baby of the fam ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 12/22/20

December 22nd 2020 PDT

Keep Telling My Story In my family of origin, keeping secrets was sometimes the “spoken” but more often the unspoken rule. My Dad was an addicted gambler and serial adulterer and Mom was an alcoholic. Yet such facts were hardly ever articulated and any verbalization of these truths resulted in knee-jerk reactions of denial, minimization and most of all, rage. Consequently, throughout my childhood, I was never sure what was safe for me to say and consciously doubted many things that I intuitivel ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 12/15/20

December 15th 2020 PDT

“I can be grateful and enjoy it” I talked with my coworker today. She was frustrated because she had so much to do at work. I listened. "It sounds like today has been a tough day for you, " I said after she had finished talking. "I have to go back to work now." I left her office and returned to mine. As the day continued I kept thinking about my coworker's frustration and wondering how I could help. Should I speak to my boss? I asked myself. Because of CoDA I told myself, &qu ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 12/15/20

December 15th 2020 PDT

“I can be grateful and enjoy it” I talked with my coworker today. She was frustrated because she had so much to do at work. I listened. "It sounds like today has been a tough day for you, " I said after she had finished talking. "I have to go back to work now." I left her office and returned to mine. As the day continued I kept thinking about my coworker's frustration and wondering how I could help. Should I speak to my boss? I asked myself. Because of CoDA I told myself, &qu ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 12/08/20

December 8th 2020 PDT

The Importance of Remaining Open The other day while walking the dog with my husband, I was talking about my shutting down and isolating process. I was able to explain to him how it happened to me by following my codependent umbilical cord back to the beginning. Being raised in a strict, abusive household and learning early that I couldn’t trust anyone, I was forced to run away at the age of 14. On the streets, there were even more people posing as friends, teachers, doctors, and therapists. ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 12/01/20

December 1st 2020 PDT

“Today I stopped!” It’s late or early, 1:00am, you decide. It always starts with a feeling in my gut that something isn’t right. I get anxious and I fight with myself and I give in! I grab my recovering addict husband’s phone and off I go on detective mode. At least that was what I would do but not today. Today was different. You might wonder... “What was she looking for?” I was looking for clues to the toxic story that is set to play on repeat in my mind—almost as if I’m collecting evidenc ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading: Call For New Submissions

November 24th 2020 PDT

Call For New Submissions! Have any of the Weekly Readings or Meetings-in-Print been helpful or thought-provoking for you? Please tell us how CoDA has impacted your life. Sharing your experience, strength and hope may help thousands of codependents still suffering. Everybody in CoDA has a recovery story to tell. Consider submitting your story and sharing your insight with other CoDA members! Email: [1]wr@coda.org Some Possible Topics: (Could include, but not limited to) 1. Sharing St ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 11/17/20

November 17th 2020 PDT

Grieving My Losses I have grieved the loss of four parents, a baby daughter, a brother, friends, aunts, uncles, grandparents, and many beloved pets. Each one was as difficult as the last. Since I have been in recovery and working hard and earnestly on my codependent issues, I’m suffering a different kind of loss now. Not only am I experiencing the death of myself and my core issues from early on faulty wiring, but each time I flex a new muscle that I didn’t know I had, I lose friends who I ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 11/10/20

November 10th 2020 PDT

Learning to Trust My Feelings How can I trust my emotions, thoughts, and innermost feelings when everything is so saturated with codependency? How do I know if it’s live, or if it’s a seemingly endless recorded playback from something that was over 50 years ago? How do I trust myself again? How do I trust my thoughts? How do I know if it’s coming from my Higher Power, or from yet another angry and disgruntled core issue? How do I trust that a person is safe or unsafe when my triggers ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 11/03/20

November 3rd 2020 PDT

10 Years ago, I was separated from my wife and children. I had recently decided to leave because I fell in love with someone else. Of course, I could not commit to my girlfriend either. I was a complete mess, saying and doing things that were completely erratic. I almost got fired from my job and everything that I had so tirelessly worked for began to unravel. I moved back in with my parents (I can’t tell you how difficult that was!), and was forced to evaluate my behavior. I found CoDA through ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 10/27/20

October 27th 2020 PDT

NO RISK, NO REWARD A traumatic childhood forced me out of the nest at age 14. Being sheltered and the only girl in the family, I was told that anything I wanted, I could have my brothers once they were finished with it. My brother brought me a beaten-up boom box with duct tape around it. It was my salvation since I was always in my room on restriction. It got taken away, with the reasoning that while I was living under their roof, everything I thought was mine was in fact theirs. Once I under ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 10/20/20

October 20th 2020 PDT

Good morning, I've been reading weekly readings and thinking about how codependency has run rampant in my life, and what I have done to heal. I was adopted by loving parents and my family, shortly after my birth. My mom grew up in a family that had abuse and dysfunction, so she had a difficult time raising me and helping me develop my emotional self. My dad grew up in a Polish Canadian immigrant family - he became an RCMP member and devoted 50 years to his profession. I revered my dad - he p ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 10/13/20

October 13th 2020 PDT

If I am going to do this, I must go all the way I have buried trauma from a very young age, and around 30 more years after that. I learned very early how to conceal and block anything my heart and mind couldn’t handle. A couple of years back, it erupted like an active volcano, destroying most everything I held sacred. My spirit shriveled up and died like a worm that didn’t make it back into the dirt before the sun’s full rise. I was in an alternate reality, which I had created myself. Nobody ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 10/06/20

October 6th 2020 PDT

It all started growing up with an alcoholic mother and a father who left when I was 12 years old for another woman. I was left taking care of a mom who was emotionally abusive and I basically raised myself. The pain of abandonment was unbearable other times I just tried to survive. Eventually the alcohol took my mother's life. I was 28 years old. It was just another abandonment in my life. I felt that I could just not take any more pain. Fast forward to my adult life. I entered into a physically ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 09/29/20

September 29th 2020 PDT

After more than 40 years of not understanding what was really "wrong" with me, I recently attended my first CODA meeting. After having experienced and been treated for depression, anxiety, headaches, anger, and substance abuse, it seems I've finally come "home" to the root of my problem--co-dependence. Thank you CODA for being available, and for the list of 28 common behavior patterns and attitudes in the "Am I Co-Dependent" brochure. I've never seen myself so clearly ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 09/22/20

September 22nd 2020 PDT

Hi, my name is Caryn, and I'm codependent. Additionally, my brain is a little different from most folks’ because I have a neurological condition that affects the way I feel, think, learn, and communicate. Just like my codependency, I've had this neurological condition my entire life, but I didn't know what it was until just a few years ago. I knew there was something “off” about me and I didn't fit in, I just didn't know what it was or what to do about it. I came to CoDA many years ago with a fri ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 09/14/20

September 14th 2020 PDT

On page 9 in our Co-Dependents Anonymous book, the second paragraph states: “Behaviors that may have served us well in our childhood are now causing our lives to deteriorate.” After reading this I recalled that as a child I had to numb my sense of danger in order to get along with my sexually abusive dad. I was small and did not have a close relationship with my mother, and dad told me not to tell her of his sexual acts or she would be mad. Since dad was my main caretaker and mom did not act lik ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 09/08/20

September 8th 2020 PDT

The Arrow I love the analogy of an arrow: it has to be pulled backwards and then it lunges and propels forward giving direction. I didn’t “plan” to make all of these changes. But there was this incredible discovery of: “I need this.” I need to accept and care for all of me, to live my life armed with the knowledge from CoDA and to apply the knowledge to my life. As I read the 12 steps of CoDA, I got to the point currently where the 12 Steps are not just words or sentences. Every letter and ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 09/01/20

September 1st 2020 PDT

My CoDA Story We grew up in a chaotic household. I am the oldest of 9 kids and took care of my siblings. I recall being out of control when codependency ran my life. I was codependent with my mom and depended on her but she wasn’t dependable. I idolized my mom and thought I was proud of her for buying me lots of clothes, and being the center of attention. My codependency also manifested itself by taking on my mom's feelings and believing it. She used to say “it’s a fact”, when in fact she j ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 08/25/20

August 25th 2020 PDT

Hello, I just wanted to share that throughout my life I've struggled with codependency. I used to do things for others to make me feel better. It was so bad that I would give into my children out of guilt and remorse for the fact that I was an addict. After getting clean and sober and a lot of reading on codependency I realized how truly self centered I really was. Most of my choices and actions were made on the basis of “how will this make me feel?” I used to think: “oh, he's been through so mu ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 08/18/20

August 18th 2020 PDT

Keep Coming Back I’ve kept coming back to CoDA meetings, usually once or twice a week, for almost five years and most recently 3-4 times a week with the availability of online meetings. I’ve been inspired by others' shares, I’ve been vulnerable and received healing from shame and my codependent character defects. Countless times I’ve shown up and been able to encourage a friend or newcomer. Sometimes I’ve shown up and only one or two other people have shown up with me; these meetings are whe ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 08/11/20

August 18th 2020 PDT

Codependent ‘I’~solation – August 11, 2020 ------------------------------------------ Being in isolation with another recovering co-dependent can be tricky at the best of times. Emotions get tangled and it’s hard to know what baggage belongs to whom? I sort through what could be my stuff, so I can take responsibility for my issues, and leave my husband’s to himself. For many years I have seen us as a highly functioning team. Being in CoDA has helped me see it for what it has been all along u ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 08/4/20

August 4th 2020 PDT

Forgiving myself is very heavy lifting, and letting myself find happiness an endless daily pursuit. My family life growing up was, in short, traumatizing. There were nine kids, an alcoholic father and uber-controlling, bible-thumping mother. Chaos reigned daily and fear of being beaten or chastised weaved through the fibers of my daily existence. At nine years old, I dreamt about my funeral continually, not knowing if I would physically survive, and if anyone would ever know I was missing. F ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 07/28/20

July 28th 2020 PDT

Tradition Nine Ever since I started doing service beyond attending meetings I have been puzzled by Tradition 9. “CoDA as such ought never be organized, but we may create service boards or committees directly responsible to those they serve.” What is “CoDA as such” and what isn’t? Recent experience has cleared some of the fog for me. Years ago I started doing service with a CoDA group doing work so demanding that we could not deal with organizational matters involving other parts of CoDA serv ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 07/21/20

July 21st 2020 PDT

From Being Codependent to Being Sufficient I had the feeling of being always alone, even when surrounded by dozens of people, even when I had a long list of so-called “friends”, even when being a favorite of many people, and even when fulfilling all my responsibilities in a perfect manner. Then surfing around the internet one day I came across CoDA and read all about codependency. I got a sudden wave of shock and goosebumps all over my body; I am codependent. All the feelings of loneliness, of ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 07/14/20

July 14th 2020 PDT

I write. It's therapeutic. I tell my story. It keeps getting better. I grew up in dysfunction. Heavy drinkers. Work addiction. Sexual abuse. Neglect. Religious fanaticism, which was mom's escape. I did a geographic, which quit working. I worked hard and that quit working. I repeated what I learned in dysfunctional family. Familiar. I was emotionally. spiritually, psychologically bankrupt. Doctor suggested treatment, where I learned about meetings, 12 simple steps. Thanks God. Did 90 meeting ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 07/06/20

July 6th 2020 PDT

My journey through service in CoDA has been bumpy but one of the greatest spiritual learning experiences of my life. I fell into a committee, attended a convention, and met people just like me from all around the world. I laughed and laughed and laughed, and inwardly cried and cried and cried, that I had come home to a family of wildly sensitive, intelligent, spiritual, wounded, suffering codependents, just like me. I spent a year serving on a committee without realizing that at the same tim ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 06/30/20

June 30th 2020 PDT

“I can only keep what I give back” I was born in 1962 to a single mother. My father had left for another state and I did not meet him until I was 2. He was an active alcoholic. My parents married and I had a childhood filled with active alcoholism accompanied with neglect and abuse. I went into foster care at the age of 13. I was told my father’s drinking was because I was a "bad kid”. Flash forward—I am now 58 years old. I got into recovery in my 20s with ACA. I learned that alcoholism ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 06/23/20

June 23rd 2020 PDT

“Thanks” My cell phone rings. Usually an out of state area code. I usually answer "Are you calling CoDA?" Usually a timid female voice asks if our "classes" would help? Sure. I ask what's up? And listen for a bit. Then suggest they surf all over the website, including the characteristics. All too often they say they don't have a computer, or internet service. I go upstairs to my desktop, suggesting we go to www.coda.org. I help them find meetings and 1) suggest they go t ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 06/16/20

June 16th 2020 PDT

“Fear” A CoDA friend called me this morning. His voice was strained. He apologized for calling, stumbling over his words, his voice thick. He said "...you don't understand. In my case, I'm alone..." and his voice broke. I did my best to comfort him. I said it is normal to be frightened--this is an unprecedented event, we are in uncharted territory. Nothing is the same anymore. Nothing like this has ever happened before. In 1918, influenza spread across the globe. But in 1918, we ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 06/09/20

June 9th 2020 PDT

THE ENIGMA I used to think that life was a random series of events with no rhyme or reason. Nothing made sense to me when I was growing up and there were many questions, but answers were few. White was black, straight was crooked, horizontal was vertical, but only on some days and that would be dependent on the moon and how it’s affecting the physical chemistry of its victims on any particular day. I thought that bad luck just happened to me no matter how much I tried to prevent it. Things— ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 06/02/20

June 2nd 2020 PDT

Came to believe I joined CoDA about 14 years ago after I asked my husband to leave because he was a sex addict. I had two young children and had been devastated to finally recognize that his behaviors were getting so bad that we could not have him in our home. It was a painful time of great uncertainty. Telling our kids that my ex was not treating me with the love and respect I needed was not all that helpful to them. When I went to my first meeting, I was afraid there would be homeless peop ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 05/26/20

May 26th 2020 PDT

RESIDENTIAL SOULS Sitting in my CoDA meeting I looked around at the circle of faces. No two expressions alike. There were half-smiles, intense brow furrowing like one gets when trying to absorb as much information as possible. “I love it here” I thought. Then I thought of an amusing analogy that all the people are like houses and within each house is a soul. Each soul is different, just as every house is decorated differently on the inside and outside. It reflects who we are on the inside. What ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 05/19/20

May 19th 2020 PDT

KEEP COMING BACK I thought I was cured and heading in the right direction in life. I did all the steps and the program fulfilled its promise. I found true serenity. But, I ventured off..... after no meetings for 3 years. When something is so ingrained as being co-dependent you don't just wake up one day cured after you: finish the steps with a sponsor, read all the literature, get a grip on your life and feel some relief. Not even if I practice the program for a few years and think I'm all bette ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 05/12/20

May 12th 2020 PDT

Dream Resuscitation Sitting by the window in the back seat of the car as my dad drove home from our friend's house in Germany was always a healing time for me. The German countryside was so beautiful and lush. Home was a place of constant fear for me, but when I was in the back seat of the car I could be anything I wanted to be. My spirit lived in the dense forests that rolled past my backseat window. I would jump from the car out of my heavy physical body and dance among the trees. I was free a ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 05/05/20

May 5th 2020 PDT

EGGSHELLS “Walking on eggshells” definition: 1) To be overly careful in dealing with a person or situation because they get angry or offended very easily. 2) To try very hard not to upset someone or something. 3) A metaphor that is often used when describing a feeling of being trapped by another’s will and our voice being silenced. When I was growing up, all of our family knew mostly when it was time to be “walking on eggshells” around my father. He was a volatile man and known for his scary ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 04/28/20

April 28th 2020 PDT

Bowl Of Liquid Mindfulness My constant worrying and projected visions of impending doom have been robbing me of the now. Being in CoDA and working my program I am beginning to see progress, but of course, I want the changes to come quicker. I have always hated waiting and have always pretty much had a ‘git er done!’ type of demeanor. I realize that a solid foundation means that every brick is in place to help support all the others and possibly a few structures close by. However, the bottom line ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 04/21/20

April 21st 2020 PDT

CoDA Reflections A dense fog covers the emerging daylight. No work, no church today. Life is happening at home. No travel. Feel uneasy going to the grocery store. Love the gas price, but no need for gas. Had a CoDA online meeting yesterday, instead of a planned CoDA Intergroup workshop. Principles are good, but people are upset, angry and irritated, even me. Humor helps, but tension is high. Business may close. Relatives in New York City are sick. I feel sick. I am hopeful for my recover ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 04/14/20

April 14th 2020 PDT

And The Oscar For Best Actor Goes To: I think that abused people are the greatest actors of all. They have to be. They spend their whole lives trying to hide the pain, shame, and brokenness behind humor and a smile so people don’t know how defective they are. I am one of those people. I made jokes, did whatever it took to weave a web of kindness around others to distract them from the mistake that was me. Always on the verge of tears, teeth clenched into a forced smile as I performed my way ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 04/07/20

April 7th 2020 PDT

The global and local phenomenon of the pandemic has provided me with some challenges and lots of food for thought. I am finding that there are two areas in particular—which I've had to work on a lot in my CoDA recovery journey of the last eight years—that are currently extra challenging to maintain but I feel extra important for me to maintain. Those areas are 1) boundaries and 2) moderating my tendency to catastrophize. Ironically, my physical immune system is important right now, but as I ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 03/31/20

March 30th 2020 PDT

My Codependent Journey I had been drifting in and out of the realization of my codependency for many years. The day it hit home for me was in a relationship with someone I cared about deeply. My life became focused on this person in unhealthy ways. I began to be controlling, trying to fix things, fix him. I was judgmental, and very hurtful, then on the flip side, loving. An abundance of emotions began to surface that I could not understand. There was a lot of push and pull. I wanted to be close, ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 03/24/20

March 24th 2020 PDT

Pandemic The global and local phenomenon of the pandemic has provided me with some challenges and lots of food for thought. I am finding that there are two areas in particular—which I've had to work on a lot in my CoDA recovery journey of the last eight years—that are currently extra challenging to maintain but I feel extra important for me to maintain. Those areas are 1) boundaries and 2) moderating my tendency to catastrophize. Ironically, my physical immune system is important right now, ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading Seeks New Articles

March 17th 2020 PDT

Are you ready to share your story and help another codependent find their experience, strength, and hope? Sharing your story is the greatest of all CoDA service work. Sometimes, somebody out there needs to hear exactly what you have to say. If you want or need to share your experience, strength and hope with others about how CoDA has helped you, then we welcome you to submit your story. If you believe as we do that the Weekly Reading is a valuable way to carry the message of recovery to ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 03/10/20

March 10th 2020 PDT

Winds of Resentment Wind whipping violently matches my mood tonight. Even a cloud floating by looks like an angry silhouette of a woman. My dog Redbow happily running around trees without a care in the world. Why can't I be more like Redbow? In time, I too can be happy, joyous and free. As I pray to my higher power the force of screaming winds whip and thrash leaves about in an ominous symphony of power. All this is what I am feeling inside me right now. It's my resentments. I pray for these emo ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 03/03/20

March 3rd 2020 PDT

Holidays are a difficult time for me. When I was a child they were a joyous time, filled with gifts and good food. I understood that everything was provided by my parents, no Santa or God. My parents were my controllers. When I got married my husband became my controller; little by little and bit by bit, I lost myself. When we had children the holidays seemed okay to my codependent self. I was under the deception that if my husband made all the decisions everything was okay. I thought I had ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 02/25/20

February 25th 2020 PDT

Kindness, and how it's misunderstood. Since I have been in CoDA my kindness is being met by all sorts of different responses and expectations and I must like myself enough to set boundaries when needed, but not in a mean way, or allowing the incident to cause me to withdraw and isolate. I need to learn to be ok with it no matter what, because changing from a caring to a hard, unkind person just isn't in me. I just don't want to allow these different events to disempower me and prompt me to retre ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 02/18/20

February 18th 2020 PDT

Relationship Bootcamp I isolated, never knowing how to deal with people in a healthy way. I was never shown or taught how. All I knew was how to communicate and deal with people in a manipulative, passive-aggressive way. Being on my own since the age of 14 it became a survival tool that I honed in order to get by. If I told people what they wanted to hear, worked hard and was honest and trustworthy, it would secure me a place in this world and help me gain friends and allies. But how can I b ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 02/11/20

February 11th 2020 PDT

Pillow Talk I have been in CoDA for over a year now. My husband has been in CoDA for two years and he introduced it to me once I regained some health, dignity and strength after almost dying from abusing alcohol. I had never had a place where I could share my experience, strengths and hopes before. Nor did I think anyone wanted to hear about them. After more than 50 years of not being able to speak, to now be encouraged to speak in order to heal seems so foreign to me. “Suck it up. Get ove ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 02/03/20

February 4th 2020 PDT

The Abyss. Over three years ago I knew I needed help. I was not making it. Everything hurt. Everything. Of course, I had a great smile to put on all of it, and I was sure that I would be able to push through by pleasing and charming others. I figured I was just simply not meeting the right people and that those around me did not fit the ticket. They no longer seemed to fill the abyss of a codependent that simply wanted to be told he is loved—wanted to be told he is loved, cared for, praised, ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 01/28/20

January 28th 2020 PDT

Fear-Based Survival Fear has robbed me of fifty-three years. In the past, whenever bad things happened I developed coping mechanisms such as aloofness, isolation, astral and out-of-body travel, sarcasm and self-inflicted pain as ways to have control in my life. I honed these survival tools into strong weapons that I used on myself or anyone else who was a threat to my safety or well-being. They served me well in my teens and twenties but have become the very things that are preventing me from ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 01/21/20

January 21st 2020 PDT

Co-dependency Used To Rule My Life Co-dependency has ruled my life for 62 years. I was attached to someone, giving all I was and forgetting about my needs. I seemed to end up with takers that would take advantage of my kindness. I also thought that I wouldn't be loved if I didn't do for others. When love did not get returned I became depressed and did a lot of negative self talk. I really didn't know there was a type of living that was called co-dependent. I married a co-dependent and he was all ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 01/14/20

January 14th 2020 PDT

B-O-U-N-D-A-R-I-E-S Being raised very strictly as a Southern Baptist military brat, my boundaries were set for me. They were cut and dried, and to cross one meant extreme punishment. Eventually even respecting these unreasonable and inconsistent boundaries led to excessive beatings, so the lines became obscured and life became even more stressful. I have never known how to have or respect boundaries for myself or others. The only boundaries I've ever experienced were built upon fear of conseq ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 01/07/20

January 7th 2020 PDT

The Secret Attic Throughout my life prior to CoDA I had a recurring nightmare where I was shocked to discover a hidden part of my house: a walled-off attic. This attic was so dilapidated that it threatened to destroy everything beneath it. Although I intellectually understood the dream's symbolism, it wasn't until my wife was in the Intensive Care Unit dying from alcoholism that the reality of this nightmare finally hit home. Due to workaholism, my codependent pattern of "walling off&qu ...Continue Reading

CoDA Weekly Reading 01/02/20

January 2nd 2020 PDT

Fear has robbed me of fifty-three years. In the past, whenever bad things happened I developed coping mechanisms such as aloofness, isolation, astral and out of body travel, sarcasm and self-inflicted pain as ways to have control in my life. I honed these survival tools into strong weapons that I used on myself or anyone else who was a threat to my safety or wellbeing. They served me well in my teens and twenties but have become the very things that are preventing me from fully embracing life or ...Continue Reading

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