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Co-Dependence and Self-Esteem

October 28, 2018

Knowing if you relate to romantic partners and other family members in a co-dependent way can be an important realization because co-dependence is linked to self-esteem.


In The Six Pillars of Self-Esteem by Nathaniel Branden he posits:


“To trust one’s mind and to know that one is worthy of happiness is the essence of self-esteem.”


Branden goes on to say this. “Self-esteem fully realized, is the experience that we are appropriate to life and to the requirements of life.”


Self-esteem realized


Author Nathaniel Branden says:


“Self-esteem is:

Confidence in our ability to think, confidence in our ability to cope with the basic challenges of life; and

Confidence in our right to be successful and happy, the feeling of being worthy, deserving, entitled to assert our needs and wants, achieve our values, and enjoy the fruits of our efforts.”


Co-dependency Quiz





Co-dependent people often feel and identify with many of the below statements.








  1. I’m often worried about others’ opinions of me.

  2. I have trouble asking for help.

  3. I have a hard time saying no.

  4. I have lived with a person with an addiction.

  5. I have lived with someone who hit or belittled me.

  6. I trust the opinions of others more than my own.

  7. I find it difficult to adjust to changes at work or home.

  8. I feel rejected when significant others spend time with friends.

  9. I am uncomfortable expressing my true feelings to others.

  10. I feel like a “bad person” when I make a mistake.

  11. I have difficulty accepting compliments or gifts.

  12. I feel embarrassed when my child or spouse makes a mistake.

  13. My partner wouldn't be able to function without me.

  14. It’s hard for me to talk with people in authority—like the police or a supervisor.

  15. I’m so busy that I can’t give any one activity my full attention.


Do I need help with co-dependence?




Sexuality educator, relationship coach, and Portland, Oregon sex therapist—Gina Senarighi suggests if you struggle in several of the above areas of your personal and or professional life you should consider talking with a therapist.




Jealousy and Co-Dependency in Non-monogamy was a recently co-presented talk by Jordyn Amstutz and Isaac Cross from the Colorado Center for Alternative Lifestyles (CAL).


According to CAL’s website, “(the Colorado Center for Alternative Lifestyles…is committed to creating an environment in (the state of Colorado) that supports consenting adults who engage in alternative relationship expressions and structures.”


In their talk, Isaac and Jordyn discussed strategies for overcoming jealousy and co-dependency. Stay tuned for the full article in Culturs Magazine.