Codependent Relationships: Takers and Caretakers

 / 

Codependent Relationships Takers and Caretakers

Takers and caretakers – they often seem to find each other! As a counselor who has worked with relationships for many years, I can tell you that this is the most frequent relationship dynamic that I encounter.

Takers are people who tend to be narcissistic – that is, they are self-centered with an excessive need for attention and admiration. The taker attempts to control getting love, attention, approval or sex from others with anger, blame, violence, criticism, irritation, righteousness, neediness, invasive touch, invasive energy, incessant talking and/or emotional drama. The taker uses many forms of both overt and covert control to get the attention he or she wants.

Takers not only want a lot of control but are often afraid of being controlled and become overtly or covertly resistant to doing what someone else wants them to do. The taker might resist with denial, defending, procrastination, rebellion, irresponsibility, indifference, withdrawal, deadness, numbness, rigidity, and/or incompetence.

In a relationship, takers operate from the belief that “You are responsible for my feelings of pain and joy. It is your job to make sure that I am okay.”

Caretakers, on the other hand, operate from the belief that “I am responsible for your feelings. When I do it right, you will be happy and then I will receive the approval I need.” Caretakers sacrifice their own needs and want to take care of the needs and wants of others, even when others are capable of doing it themselves. Caretakers give to others from fear rather than love – they give to get.

Neither takers nor caretakers take responsibility for their own feelings and wellbeing. Takers generally attempt to have control over others’ giving them the attention and admiration they want in overt ways, while caretakers attempt to have control over getting approval in more covert ways, such as compliance, doing to much for others, and/or withholding their wants and opinions.

Because neither takers nor caretakers are taking care of themselves, they will each end up feeling angry, resentful, trapped, unappreciated, unseen, unloved, misunderstood, and/or unacknowledged.

I tell my clients that whenever they feel this way in a relationship, it is because they are expecting the other person to give them what they are not giving to themselves. When we are not seeing, valuing, acknowledging, or understanding ourselves, and when we are not attending to our own wants and needs, we will always feel upset when others treat us just like we are treating ourselves.

Codependent relationships – relationships of two takers, two caretakers, or a taker and a caretaker – will always run into problems. Many people leave these relationships, only to discover the same problems in their next relationships. Takers and caretakers can switch places in different relationships and over different issues, but the problems remain the same – anger, resentment, distance, lack of sexuality, boredom, feeling unloved and unloving.

There really is a way to heal this.

Relationships heal when individuals heal. When each partner does their Inner Bonding work, their relationship system heals. When each person learns to take full personal responsibility for his or her own feelings of pain and joy, they stop pulling on each other and blaming each other. When each person learns to fill themselves with love and share that love with each other, instead of always trying to get love, the relationship heals.

Learning how to take 100% responsibility for your own feelings is one of the essential ingredients in creating a healthy relationship. This means learning to be conscious of what you are feeling and being open to learning about what you are doing to create your own feelings (Step 1 of Inner Bonding), instead of being a victim and believing that others are causing your feelings. Your feelings come from how you treat yourself and others, from what you tell yourself and what you believe about yourself and others, rather than from others behavior. Blaming others for your feelings will always lead to major relationship problems.

In reality, you are the only one you actually have control over. You are the only one you can change. Why not start today by taking your eyes off your partner and putting them squarely on yourself? Why not start today with a consistent Inner Bonding practice? Why not join our membership community and receive help and support with your Inner Bonding practice?


Written by Margaret Paul, PhD

For information or to schedule a phone or Skype session: 310-459-1700 • 888-646-6372 (888-6INNERBOND) http://www.innerbonding.com

You may also like

3 Secrets To Achieving Love Without Attachment

Love Without Attachment: Ways To Love Unconditionally

Are You Emotionally Dependent And Not In Love (Here’s how To know)

15 Warning Signs Your Boyfriend Has Major Insecurity Issues

The Reason Why We Tend to Attract Emotionally Unavailable Partners

5 Reasons Why You Get Emotionally Attached Too Soon

Codependent Relationships Takers and Caretakers

— Share —

— About the Author —

Leave a Reply



Up Next

15+ Quotes From “Bridgerton” That Depict Obsessive Yearning

Best Bridgerton Quotes About Love And Romance

If you like romances and things from the Regency era, these Bridgerton quotes show how obsession can be a form of longing. This Netflix series features several love stories in which the characters experience intense desire and emotions.

Through eloquent dialogues and passionate interactions, “Bridgerton” powerfully reveals the aspirations that motivate its characters.

The series effectively frames the relationship between Daphne and Simon as an embodiment of smouldering attraction while at the same time conveying other major figures’ secretly yearning for each other.

Here are some Bridgerton quotes about love that perfectly sum up obsessive yearning.<



Up Next

TikTok’s Ultimate Couples Psychometrics Test: Which Iconic Pair Are You and Your Partner?

Couples Psychometrics Test: Fun Results Of Fictional Couples

Do you want to explore your relationship dynamics in a fun and insightful way? Take this Couples Psychometrics Test, the newest sensation making waves on social media, particularly TikTok!

Forget zodiac signs and typical personality quizzes; this one goes further to study your compatibility with your partner’s and give a famous fictional couple from TV shows or movies as your match.

This is a test attempts to find the perfect on-screen duo for you. It checks out our personalities, styles of communication and other oddities that make us real-life couples.

For those of you who are just wondering about which legendary pair represents your love story in th



Up Next

10 Signs You Are A Rebound And Nothing More

Signs You Are A Rebound And Nothing More

The dating world can sometimes feel like you are on a wild roller coaster ride of emotions, full of exhilarating highs and heart breaking lows. And you might find yourself unknowingly become someone’s rebound. But how do you gauge that? What are the signs you are a rebound, and nothing more?

Being someone’s rebound means being an emotional pit stop for them; it’s like they are taking a short break where they are seeking temporary solace before moving on for good. It’s not a good place to be in, honestly.

Today, we are talking to talk about all those glaring signs you are a rebound, so that it’s easier for you to decide if you want to remain one, or let go and wait for someone who gives you the love and respect you deserve.



Up Next

What Are Yellow Flags In A Relationship? Is Your Relationship Sending Warning Signals?

Identifying Yellow Flags In A Relationship and How To Deal

Have you ever felt a tinge of uncertainty in your romantic relationship? A flickering doubt, a slight unease? Relationships are complex, and it’s normal for them to have ups and downs. However, it’s crucial to pay attention to the subtle yellow flags in a relationship that may indicate potential issues down the road. 

These early warning signs can offer insights into the health and sustainability of a relationship. Let us explore what does a yellow flag mean, how to identify them, and most importantly, how to deal with yellow flags to foster a stronger and healthier connection.

What Does a Yellow Flag Mean in a Relationship?

A yellow flag in a relationship is a cautionary sign that som



Up Next

Mirroring In Relationships: How It Shapes Romance

Mirroring In A Relationship: Examples Of Love And Support

Do you ever feel that you could almost read your partner’s mind, or have you ever experienced the baffling feeling of finishing each other’s sentences? If yes, you must have encountered a mysterious human behavior called mirroring in a relationship.

So, What Is Mirroring Behavior In Relationships?

Mirroring behavior psychology is an unintentional process in which people imitate one another’s actions, gestures, and emotions.



Up Next

8 Questions To Ask Yourself If You Want To Avoid Marrying The Wrong Person

Marrying The Wrong Person? Important Questions To Ask

Picture this: you’re standing at the altar, surrounded by beaming friends and family, moments away from saying “I do” to the person who you thought was your soulmate and the love of your life. But deep down, you can’t ignore the nagging feeling that something doesn’t feel right. Could it be possible that you’re marrying the wrong person?

The fear of marrying the wrong person lingers in the hearts of many, and it’s a fear worth exploring, because this is your life we are talking about. In this article, we’ll dive into eight essential questions that you should ask yourself before taking that leap into forever.

So, grab a cup of coffee, get comfortable, and let’s unravel how to avoid marrying the wrong person.



Up Next

63 Conversation Starters For Deep Dialogues With Your Partner

Conversation Starters For Deep Dialogues With Your Partner

Why conversation starters? Over time conversations with your partner might begin to feel shallow and focused more on the daily grind than topics that actually matter. This is normal. It’s probably not a dangerous red flag that your relationship is about to end, but it is likely unsatisfying and monotonous.

It’s quite easy to reignite the spark with your partner by enjoying deeper and more meaningful conversations just by becoming more intentional in carving out time to talk.

We all know that communication is key to a healthy relationship, but let’s be honest; talking about what’s for dinner or whose turn it is to walk the dog just won’t cut it.

If you’re yearning for a deeper connection, it’s worth dedicating ten to fifteen minutes a day to one of the most important people in your life.