You and the person you’re addicted to share a perfectly functional dysfunctional relationship. And the longer you stay, and try to fix or change the dysfunction and make it not dysfunctional, it becomes even more dysfunctional. That’s because you’re not fixing anything. And you’re not fixing anything because nothing is broken. The relationship is a bad dysfunctional one, true. But that’s its job and it can’t be fixed. It is serving its purpose:
- It’s keeping you from facing your fears of being alone
- It’s keeping you from facing yourself and fixing your own problems
- It’s keeping you from real intimacy, because you’re not emotionally grown up enough to handle real intimacy (if you were, you wouldn’t be the relationship you’re currently in)
- It’s keeping him in a distant, dysfunctional relationship, possibly with no strings attached, because he’s not capable of real intimacy either
- And it’s keeping you both dependent on drama, obsession, avoidance and pain, because you both thrive on those things.
How am I able to say that your relationship works perfectly, especially when you are in so much pain and suffering throughout it? Well, let’s think about it realistically: when something doesn’t work, when something’s broken (a kitchen plate, or a glass, for example), what do you do with it? Do you keep eating off half a plate? Do you drink out of a broken glass, with a jagged edge? I’m guessing you don’t. I’m guessing you throw it away, in the trash, where it belongs.
What about something like a car, which has more value and can be repaired. What if you bought a used car and it kept breaking down, month, after month, after month, after month. And you kept repairing it. And the more money you put in the thing to fix it, it just kept breaking down on you. What would you do? I know what I’d do. I’d tell the bum who sold it to me that he sold me a lemon and I’d ask for my money back. I may even take legal action. Eventually, I’d get rid of it because it wasn’t serving its purpose. Somedays it would work, others it wouldn’t. But I couldn’t take my chances! I would have to get to work. I would have to be able to depend on a car, so for me to make any long-term investment in a really crappy car that kept breaking down on me and costing me a fortune with little payback would be completely idiotic of me, not to mention irresponsible.
So, when something doesn’t work for us, we get rid of it. But when something works, we keep it around.
Ask yourself if you’re holding on to a broken dinner plate? A cracked glass? A lemon? Or a fully functioning broken relationship that serves a need you never realized you had.