Emotional Dependence and Marriage (7 Habits)

Here are my 7 notes for today!  If you don’t care to read them all, then just read #5 & 6, then skip down to the bottom where I talk about the maturity continuum and how it relates to the marriage relationship.

  1. Our character is basically a composite of our habits [thoughts –> actions –> habits –> character –> destiny!]
  2. Breaking a deeply embedded habitual tendency that violates basic principles of human effectiveness involves more than a little willpower and a few minor changes.
  3. Habit – the intersection of knowledge (what & why to do), skill (how to do), and desire (motivation, want to do).
  4. Happiness requires you to be willing to subordinate what you think you want now for what you want later.
  5. Maturity continuum [Dependence –> Independence –> Interdependence]
  6. Interdependence is a choice only independent people can make.  Dependent people don’t have enough character to do so; they don’t own enough of themselves.
  7. The 7 habits are principles of effectiveness that are in harmony with the natural law of P/PC balance.  We must take care of both (P) production of desired results and (PC) production capability, the ability or asset that produces results.

Perhaps the most though provoking thing I read today was point #6, that you can’t jump straight from dependence to interdependence.  I have come to conclude that I am emotionally dependent (my sense of worth and security comes from perceived opinions of others) and, to a certain extent, intellectually dependent (I count on my husband much of the time to think through issues and problems of my life – and right now he’s probably got more than he can take with all this ED stuff).

I feel like much of stress in our marriage these days may be related to me trying to force interdependence between us, when I really haven’t reached that stage of independence first required to make an interdependent marriage work.  After all, marriage is an interdependent relationship – that is a natural law.  Since we started dating when I was only 18, I can totally see how I never truly developed my innate self.  I was still at a critical point of growth and development in my life.  He became a part of my identity and I succumbed to dependence.

I hope with the guidance of God, lots of prayer, and hard work to make new habits, I will be able to find myself; and thus become a person who is capable of interdependent relationships throughout the rest of my life!

Do you think you must truly be independent, to fully OWN yourself before you can be interdependent?  Does attempting interdependence before you are ready simply create more dependencies?

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