Friday, April 09, 2010

Codependency: Why do people stay in unhealthy relationships?

Have you ever wondered in frustration why someone you respect or admire decided to “stay” with a spouse or partner who has committed repeated acts of betrayal? Or do you tend to always end up dating people who come from alcoholic or dysfunctional families? Or maybe you know someone whose job consumes all of their time and energy, leaving essentially no time for self-care or meaningful relationships. This article aims to explain why some of us struggle to separate from unhealthy people or work settings that consume our energy at the expense of our own mental and physical well-being.

Codependency became a widely used term in the 1970’s to describe family dynamics when one person is an alcoholic. Since then, mental health professionals have come to describe codependency as a learned behavior that often originates during childhood in dysfunctional families. Common causes of family dysfunction are chronic parental conflict or divorce, alcoholism or addiction of any kind, physical, emotional, or sexual abuse, or chronic illness. Children raised in an environment where their needs and feelings are frequently overlooked are at risk for developing a codependent style of interacting. As adults, they tend to seek out relationships or work environments that demand codependent behaviors, because they feel familiar and comfortable, in spite of the pain or hardship they bring.

Common characteristics of codependency

A need to control others. Codependents attempt to exercise authority over people around them through unsolicited advice, in an effort quell fears of unpredictability. They tend to use gifts, favors, doting behaviors and sex to manipulate others into cooperation. They can appear to have a superior attitude, but very often have low self-esteem as a result of poorly developed self-worth in childhood.

A need to "fix" people or things around them.
Codependents need to feel needed. They have a hard time knowing the difference between normal caring behavior and codependent care-taking. They tend to believe others are incapable of caring for themselves, and are typically attracted to people whom many would deem hopelessly riddled with problems. They believe (unrealistically) in their power to change others. When people around them start to ‘get better’ codependents may sabotage others’ progress, so as to continue being needed. Other types of codependents take on unrelenting work loads, believing themselves to be the only one capable of doing a job, while others in similar positions find it acceptable to do less. They are compulsive care-givers and workaholics, often neglecting their own physical and mental health.

Codependents have difficulty expressing feelings.
Codependents often struggle to identify their feelings, and attempt to minimize, deny or alter their true feelings once they are known. They tend to avoid confrontation, and remain loyal to their own detriment out of fear of abandonment or loss of a job that has essentially taken over their life. They often repress a great deal of anger, and as a result, tend to behave in passive-aggressive ways, making statements such as "After all I've done for you, this is the thanks I get” or “where would you (or 'this company') be without me?”

Outside opinions determine their self-worth.
Codependents rely heavily on the opinions of others to determine their value, because they lack a sense of their own positive self-worth. They often accept purely sexual relationships when they really seek love. Only when they believe people are attracted to them/like them, or they earn coveted praise or work accolades do they feel any sense of worth. They have an extreme need for recognition and approval and are often devastated when their efforts go unrecognized.

Codependency Test

1. Do you feel offended, rejected or angry when another person does not want your help?
2. Do you constantly over commit yourself to another, committees or your work?
3. Do you have a hard time understanding or expressing your true feelings?
4. Do you feel worthless unless you are ‘productive’?
5. Do you find it difficult or uncomfortable to spend time by yourself?
6. Do you work long hours at your job, without receiving additional compensation or recognition for your effort?
7. Do you find yourself constantly trying please others?
8. Do you worry more about your loved ones’ activities than yours own?
9. Do you go to work early and stay late, because the boss "needs you"?
10. Do you blame others for your anger and/or lack of control?
11. Do you find yourself repeating one bad relationship after another?
12. Do you sometimes deny or hide the fact that your family may have been abusive and/or dysfunctional?
13. In the last year, has anyone resorted to arguing with you, or begging to get you to stop trying to help them?
14. When you survey your relationships, do you find yourself surrounded by mostly people who need you?
15. Do you ever find yourself making excuses for needy or abusive people in your life?

If you answered YES to 4 or more of the questions above, you may have a problem with codependency. Treatment options, including individual and/or group therapy, may help you begin to make healthy changes.

Respectfully submitted by Dr. Christina Villarreal, Clinical Psychologist is Oakland, CA

Reference:[youtube=] (Co-Dependents Anonymous, Inc., a.k.a. CoDA). CoDA is a fellowship of men and women whose common purpose is to develop healthy relationships and is not affiliated with any other 12 step program.

SF Giants v. Atlanta Braves Opening Day and Zennie's day off

The SF Giants take on The Atlanta Braves at 1:35 today, and this blogger's off to AT&T Park for the game and fun, and to watch The Masters, too.

That means a day off and away from the computer. Well, ok, I will have my G-1 Phone and camcorder. Watch my tweets at @Zennie62 on Twitter.

Go Giants! Go Oakland A's. And that's Oakland A's, not San Jose or Fremont, or any other weird name for a baseball team.

Oakland A's, baby. Get used to it. Regardless of what an MLB "blue-ribbon" committee says, the A's are an Oakland story.

Have a great day.

Tiger Woods at The Masters: 68 best start; at 4 under par today

Also: tiger woods masters, tiger woods nike ad, tiger woods golf, woods at maters, woods in augusta

Lost in all of the media coverage of Tiger Woods return and the Tiger Woods Nike Ad controversy, is the fact that in his first day of play for all the marbles, Tiger Woods shot a 68, his best start in his career. Now, as this is written, Tiger Woods is at 4 under par with nine holes completed. Fred Couples is holding a two-shot lead at 6 under par.

What this shows is Tiger Woods retrained way of playing the game of Golf is working when it counts: at The Masters. He's centered himself and now that the highs and lows are gone, Tiger Woods plays like he's seen it all; he can concentrate more on his technique.

No word of airplanes with funny banners today. At least not yet.

Stay tuned.

2010 Camaro gets Barris makeover for Saturday event with Jay Leno

The 2010 Chevrolet Camaro, the new version of the classic American muscle car from GM and Chevy, gets George Barris makeover for a Saturday event. On April 10th, Community Chevrolet, located at 200 West Olive Avenue in Burbank, California has the first, the # 1 Barris Kustom 2010 Chevrolet Camaro "Spirit" car, and it's hot.

If you're wondering who George Barris is, you haven't lived. Barris created many of the legendary television cars like the 1966 Batman TV Batmobile, The Munster Koach from The Musters, the Beverly Hillbillie truck, and Knightrider KITT car, to name some of Barris creations.

But this Barris Kustom "Sprit" Camaro is not for TV, it's for real (Barris likes to use the word "Custom" with a "K" so it's "Kustom"). Barris said:

Today so many kustom vehicles have entirely too much work done on them. I believe we have succeeded in developing a kustom vehicle with just the right amount of kustom features and keeping it affordable to the automotive enthusiast while being made in the USA.

Some of the highlighted changes in the base 2010 Camaro 2SS RS include:

Kustom painted hood with deep pearl and metallic accents emphasizing the wide, aggressive stance of the 2010 Chevrolet Camaro.
Kustom painted front fenders and doors. The aerodynamic “Spear” blurs the vision with a striking burst of speed.
Kustom foil “hand-swirled” striping and beautifully pin-stripping outline the kustom paint on the hood, front fenders and doors.
Kustom paint to accent the rear fender louvers
Kustom paint to accent the four taillight tunnels
Kustom 3 bar chrome legend grill
“Spirit” name is added to both fenders along with a Barris Kustom Crest insignia.
Barris Kustom dash plaque hand signed by George Barris.
Lexani Chrome Painted Spoked Wheels

You don't have to be in Burbank to order this car; just contact your Chevy dealer. But if you can, come to Community. There will be celebrities like John Schneider, Joe Mantegna, James Pitt (Avatar), Brenda Dickson-Young & The Restless, Claudia Wells-Back to the Future, Kat Kramer, LA Councilman Tom LaBonge, Barris pal-Jay Leno, Cindy Margolis, Tom Hallick and many others.

Stay tuned.

Nancy Pelosi visited San Francisco's Balboa Cafe

Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA)
A tip from a good source informed this blogger that Nancy Pelosi, the Speaker of The U.S. House of Representatives and San Francisco representative, paid a visit to The Balboa Cafe in San Francisco Saturday night, March 27th, and it was out of the blue.

It started with a phone call informing the manager that Nancy Pelosi was coming with a party of an undisclosed size. But when they arrived the party also included "a lot of Secret Service people. This place has never seen that kind of security" the source said.

But it's not the first time The Balboa Cafe has entertained important elected officials. When San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom was an entrepreneur who was co-owner of The Balboa Cafe, he was known for election night parties that attracted U.S. Senator Dianne Feinstein and former Mayor Willie Brown.

When Jerry Brown was Mayor of Oakland, he was a known to visit The Balboa. One night on a July Saturday in 1999, this blogger, who was at the time working to bring the Super Bowl to Oakland, was sitting near the side entrance door when Jerry walked in. "What are you doing here in San Francisco?", Jerry said, "You're supposed to be raising money for The Super Bowl."

"Jerry," I said, "That's why I'm here."

The Balboa Cafe, of which this blogger is a regular, has also hosted celebrities like the late Anna Nicole Smith and Star Wars-creator George Lucas, who likes (from personal experience) Irish Coffees.

I started visiting "The Balboa" while working for Mayor Elihu Harris as Economic Advisor between 1995 and 1999; that was also how I learned about The Balboa's election parties.

Maybe one day Mayor Newsom will get President Obama over for a visit?

Stay tuned.

San Francisco's Pelosi stalker Gregory Lee Giusti bipolar?

Also: san francisco, nancy pelosi, speaker pelosi stalker, gregory lee giusti bipolar, pelosi health care bill threat

48-year-old Gregory Lee Giusti, the San Francisco man who was accused of threatening and stalking House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, may be bipolar. According to CNN, Gregory Lee Giusti "wept" in court Thursday, as he talked to his lawyer before a federal court hearing. Afterward, Magistrate Judge Bernard Zimmerman reportedly asked prosecutors to interview Giusti to determine if he was bipolar, which could lead to placement in a halfway house rather than jail.

Gregory Lee Giusti was said to have called San Francisco and Washington, D.C offices of Speaker Pelosi as many times (48) as he is old. Giusti allegedly said "don't bother coming back to California cause you ain't gonna have a place to live" if the Health Care Bill is passed.

It passed.

This blogger thinks Gregory Lee Giusti's problem is he never grew up to learn that people get placed in jail for making threats. It's more that he's immature than bipolar and was probably lucky enough to get away with this stuff until this week when he was arrested Wednesday. His Mom guessed that Gregory Lee Giusti got his negative ideas from watching Fox News.

No surprise there.

Stay tuned.

The Masters Tiger Woods Ad by Nike Golf hypocritically slammed

Also: the masters, tiger woods ad, nike golf ad, masters tiger woods, earl woods ad

Note: don't forget the Tiger Woods poll.

The Masters Tiger Woods Ad has been described in this space and on video at Zennie62 on TouTube as an American Classic and a work of genius...

The Masters Tiger Woods Ad by Nike Golf is being hypocritically slammed in the media. If you've not seen the controversial ad, which has now generated over 1 million views on YouTube as of this writing, here it is:

Some in the media, actually a number of people, have called the ad "tasteless", "rank", and other choice words and then harp on the commercialism of it all as AOL's National Columnist did in the first blog post on the Tiger WOods ad in this space.

What's funny about the blast against Nike and consumerism is the news websites and blogs that are leveling those claims have ads on their pages, thus making money from the online traffic the Tiger Woods-Nike-ad-related article draws.

In other words, the New Media critics charging that Nike's just trying to sell products are themselves helping other companies (and maybe Nike if the Nike ad's on their website) sell products and services. That's why I claim the Tiger Woods Ad is being hypocritically slammed. The News Media itself is part of the same consumerism some in News Media rail against.

HLN's Jane Valez-Mitchell,  who's Issues show I really love, was for me uncharacteristically annoying in her blast against the Nike ad, slamming the use of Tiger Woods' father's voice to "sell products" and screaming "consumerism" while at the same time promoting Geico auto insurance (which uses that awful commercial series that makes Cavemen a minority group), and day-trading software.

Why doesn't Jane have a problem with a Geico commercial that subversively makes fun of the concerns of American minorities who've been stereotyped in the media?  Is it because Geico sponsors her show?

The American News Media has been so drunk on the revenue from ad spending for print for so long that it has been under the impression that news produced was totally disconnected from ad sales and what was produced was free of corporate influence. Nothing could be further from the truth.

Now that the ad money for newspapers and magazines has dramatically decreased and television has become a trend-follower's free-for-all, News Media journalists and editors are at a loss to figure out how to replenish lost ad dollars online, yet still act as of they're not part of the same corporate system that sponsors Tiger Woods, when they really are.

It's silly; it really is. If the News Media took off their blinders, dropped the ego, and realized that they need the same Nike company to buy ads, they'd see the whole Tiger Woods Nike Ad issue differently.

No, I'm not saying don't criticize the ad, but just stop mentioning how Nike is trying to sell product. It's really weird, silly, and hypocritical to have News Media people whining about that.

In other words, leave Tiger Woods alone, unless you're going to admit, as I do, that blogging about him generates traffic and ad revenue. In other words, be real!

Stay tuned.

San Francisco Neo-Nazi Girl upsets Marina District

Related searches: neo-nazi, san francisco nazi, marina district, sf marina district, chestnut and pierce, sf nazi party

Does San Francisco have a Nazi problem? Why does it seem like there's a rise in the number of white people who claim to be Nazi, or more accurately Neo-Nazi and young people regardless of color who don't know how awful Nazi symbols are or why?

The most famous example of the latter was the Taylor Swift Swastika photo scandal where Taylor Swift's representative claimed Taylor Swift did not know that A.J. English's t-shirt (English is the man who took the photo with Swift) had a Swastika symbol on it, and English himself said that people at the party just painted it that way!

Then there was the more recent photo of Jesse James wearing a Nazi Waffen SS hat, and giving the "Heil Hitler" salute. And of course, there was his alleged first mistress Michelle "Bombshell" McGee, who posed in a Nazi bikini and worked as a model for the "Angry White Boy" clothing website.

Whatever's going on, this disturbing trend has hit San Francisco.

Two of this blogger's best friends sent a Facebook note today, Thursday, about a woman who's reportedly on the corner of Chestnut and Pierce in the Marina District and who they describe as a "Nazi." One friend wrote:

If you see this crazy gal who thinks She can do Nazism in SF. Report her! She almost got beaten by ppl on the street....she has to live with Hitler and not in the US!

The other friend was even more upset, writing this:

unreal situation at chestnut and pierce SF. Woman with nazi lit and promoting obama impeachment. get a life outside US. almost got n fight!

According to the photos - I just learned about the Nazi chic this evening - she's connected with the Lyndon LaRouche effort. Lyndon LaRouche is a political activist who this blogger has always considered something of a nutcase who thinks he should be President of The United States.

Lyndon LaRouche is considered to be an anti-Semite, who in the past has made comments against Jewish faith and Jewish culture. LaRouche has also allegedly attacked efforts to expose and prosecute Nazi war criminals. So, Lyndon LaRouche has apparently become the intellectual foundation for the ideas of the "San Francisco Nazi Girl."

The San Francisco Neo-Nazi Girl can express her view and it's good to offer disagreement. But threatening her with violence is really not a good thing to do. I personally ask people to avoid such actions. If they can't calmly talk with her, just keep walking.

For those who want to talk to San Francisco Neo-Nazi Girl, just explain that the reason people are upset with her is that she's backing an idea that at its very heart is designed to hurt someone else just because they're different. The fear is that people who think like her may try to kill someone who's not like them. There's certainly enough evidence to back that claim.

But threatening to hurt San Francisco Neo-Nazi Girl is just not right.

Stay tuned.