Conquering Shame and Codependency: 8 Steps to Freeing the True You by Darlene LancerConquering Shame and Codependency: 8 Steps to Freeing the True You by Darlene Lancer

Conquering Shame and Codependency: 8 Steps to Freeing the True You

byDarlene Lancer

Paperback | May 16, 2014

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A nationally recognized author, speaker and codependency expert examines the roots of shame and its connection with codependent relationships. Learn how to heal from their destructive hold by implementing eight steps that will empower the real you and lead to healthier relationships.

A nationally recognized author and codependency expert examines the roots of shame and its connection with codependent relationships. Learn how to heal from their destructive hold by implementing eight steps that will empower the real you, and lead to healthier relationships.Shame: the torment you feel when you’re exposed, humiliated, or rejected; the feeling of not being good enough. It’s a deeply painful and universal emotion, yet is not frequently discussed. For some, shame lurks in the unconscious, undermining self-esteem, destroying confidence, and leading to codependency. These codependent relationships--where we overlook our own needs and desires as we try to care for, protect, or please another--often cover up abuse, addiction, or other harmful behaviors. Shame and codependency feed off one another, making us feel stuck, never able to let go, move on, and become the true self we were meant to be.In Conquering Shame and Codependency, Darlene Lancer sheds new light on shame: how codependents’ feelings and beliefs about shame affect their identity, their behavior, and how shame can corrode relationships, destroying trust and love. She then provides eight steps to heal from shame, learn to love yourself, and develop healthy relationships.
Darlene Lancer is a licensed marriage and family therapist with over 25 years of experience working with individuals and couples. She regularly gives seminars on self-esteem, relationships, codependency, and addiction. Author of Codependency for Dummies, How to Speak Your Mind: Become Assertive and Set Limits, and 10 Steps to Self-Este...
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Title:Conquering Shame and Codependency: 8 Steps to Freeing the True YouFormat:PaperbackDimensions:248 pages, 8.4 × 5.4 × 0.7 inPublished:May 16, 2014Publisher:Hazelden PublishingLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:1616495332

ISBN - 13:9781616495336

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Ways in which we cope with anxiety, shame, and hostilityExcerpted from Conquering Shame and Codependency: 8 Steps to Freeing the True You By Darlene LancerThe AccommodatorEven though belligerent alcoholics, self-sufficient workaholics, and narcissists are generally codependent, Accommodators make up the majority of self-identified codependents. Those who are addicted to love, romance, or relationships closely resemble the stereotypical codependent. Love is the alchemical elixir they hope will magically transform their loneliness, unhappiness, and shame. Accommodators yearn for happiness and validation with one significant person with whom to merge to finally achieve wholeness. They move towards people, believing that love and being liked will protect them from being hurt. They have intense needs to be wanted, accepted, supported, understood, approved of, needed, and loved. Their craving makes them as dependent upon a relationship as other addicts are on a process or drug. They take care of others, please, and put others needs and feelings first to ensure that they’re desired, needed, and not abandoned. Their personality is passive, compliant, self-effacing, and accommodating. To be accepted, they try to display likable traits and hide their true feelings, repress their anger, and don’t set boundaries. The discrepancy between their public and private self reveals their shame and emptiness. Unlike Masters, they favor a submissive role and eschew power. In many ways, they’re the opposite. Yet, underneath they repress an expansive side – their pride and their ambitious and competitive impulses. They might avoid competition, sabotage themselves professionally or in games, and feel guilty should they actually win. Instead of feeling confident, they’re more or less aware of feeling inferior, flawed, guilty, not enough, nor worthy of respect. They fear success and avoid recognition, preferring to be the adviser to the executive, the manager to a celebrity, or the “woman behind the man.” They don’t exercise authority in their own life and are uncomfortable in a position of authority. When put in a supervisory role, they feel guilty being in charge and have great difficulty communicating expectations, criticism, or disappointment to those they oversee. Assertiveness feels unkind, setting limits feels rude, and making requests feels demanding. To them, their assertive voice sounds harsh, albeit normal to others. Like Masters, they also might feel like a fraud when they’re given more responsibility or receive praise or success. Because love is the highest ideal, Accommodators strive to be a loving, lovable, saintly, charitable, and selfless do-gooder – someone flawlessly noble and compassionate. Like Sister Luke, played by Audrey Hepburn in The Nun’s Story, Accommodators constantly judge what they should do or should have done to live up to their ideal self-image, particularly relating to their highest values – being loving, unselfish, and attentive. They don’t believe they have rights and feel guilty stating their needs, of which they’re mostly unaware. This denial of self-interest and their fear of conflict and abandonment make setting boundaries extremely difficult, which allows others to easily abuse and exploit them. They have trouble saying “no,” both to those who abuse them and to those who need them. They self-sacrifice and may go to any length to please. In order to do so, they deny, minimize, or rationalize abuse and hurt feelings, find fault in themselves, and try to be more understanding. This behavior is to prevent their greatest fear, rejection, which would dash their hope of finding lasting love and confirm their belief of being unlovable. Accommodators suppress their anger and aggression to live up to their ideal and not jeopardize important relationships. This makes them more vulnerable to shame. They’re afraid of abandonment and their own and others’ anger, because of what they witnessed in their childhood. “Don’t make waves” is their motto. Though the type of abuse may differ, they’re usually reliving the experience of being shamed as a child, enacted by a partner whom they see as their parent. Emotionally trapped in their past, they’re unable to access their power as an adult, further stunting their ability to assert and protect themselves and stop the abuse. Instead, to keep the peace, they placate, appease, and communicate indirectly in ways that are dishonest, manipulative, and passive-aggressive. Their aggression is directed at themselves and is expressed indirectly toward others through control, criticism, complaints, and passive manipulation. Like other codependents, they have difficulty accepting responsibility for actions that might reflect negatively on them. Nevertheless, they frequently say, “I’m sorry” to maintain an emotional connection. They stay in unhappy relationships because being alone would feel worse. Not only do they ignore their needs, but also their wants. Accommodators don’t feel entitled to be happy, loved, successful, or worthy of pursuing their dreams, which causes them to feel like helpless victims. They don’t realize their self-sacrificing behavior compounds their suffering. Rage is masked by self-pity. “Why me?” externalizes their inner self-loathing and attracts sympathy. Shame denies Accommodators the power to change their lives. Long term denial of their needs and anger lead to bitterness, resentment, and depression and can result in psychosomatic symptoms, and despair. This chapter has reviewed the many ways in which people avoid feeling ashamed, by both putting up defenses and assuming one of three coping strategies. Awareness is the first step in healing from shame. Try to identify which of these coping mechanisms you use, and notice when you employ them. The following chapter looks deeper into the well at the emptiness that underlies shame, which everyone, not only codependents, wants to escape.

Editorial Reviews

“If you begin to work through Lancer’s exercises on your own, you will likely gain self-knowledge. Think of the book as a launch point for eventually getting closer to your authentic self, rather than an immediate solution, and it may just help you with some codependency issues.”--Megan Riddle, PsychCentral.com“It would be a shame not to give this book a try.”--Danielle Stewart, Afterpartychat.com“I picked this book up so I could better understand codependency and the association of shame. In that, Lancer’s book fulfilled my need for knowledge. I was impressed with Lancer’s breadth of understanding, the self-examination exercises throughout, and the information being shared within these pages.”--Nina Longfield, luxuryreading.com“This book is definitely a worthy read as well as eye-opening in how shame toys and plays with us.”--Svetlana’s Reads and Views, Svetla-randomblog.blogspot.com“I will keep this book with the rest of my resources that I found invaluable. In fact, I recommend this book to pretty much everyone.”--Literally Jen, literallyjen.com“Conquering Shame and Codependency just might be a great companion to keep on your shelf.”--Patricia’s Wisdom, patriciaswisdom.com“Teachers, family therapists, and school counselors will find this a good reference in identifying factors and solutions for those they may be concerned with assisting; and for anyone who has experienced the negative effects shame can produce, this book are recommended reading.”--My Bookshelf, shirley-mybookshelf.blogspot.com“An eye-opener and a good food for thought read.”--Bookish Ardour, bookishadour.com"I recommend this book if you are going through a trying time and are looking for answers."--Robyn Baldwin, robynbaldwin.com