• Feels unable to leave the nest or has to use anger and bad feelings to cut ties with family or employers.
  • Has difficulty expressing disagreement with others because of fear of loss of support or approval (this does not include fear of retaliation from an abuser)
  • Feeling required or obliged to do anything to keep the peace with others because of fear of abandonment.
  • A lack of self-esteem or self-confidence in own judgment and ability.
  • Lack of boundaries; telling indiscriminate information to anyone who listens.
  • Having to ask permission of a partner, including spending money, authority to speak, using the car, etc.
  • Seeking information in a stealthy way, looking through drawers, private records, purses or billfolds.
  • Thoughts of suicide after a loved one's death or a divorce.
  • Feelings of being stuck or trapped in job or relationship.
  • Going to excessive lengths to obtain nurture and support. i.e. having sex you don'€™t want or doing things you don'€™t want to do that are harmful to you to "get love."
  • Feeling uncomfortable and helpless when alone and unable to tolerate silence.
  • Urgently seeking another relationship when a close relationship ends or even before it ends.
  • Unrealistically preoccupied with what a loved one is doing or thinking.
  • Having delusive expectations of how a spouse, parent or child should behave.
  • Being in training all your life for a job or position and afraid to take the next step.
  • Being excessively hurt by other people's words or behaviors.
  • Being embarrassed by a family member's behavior as if they are a reflection of your worth.
  • Feeling happy and successful only if your partner or family member is feeling that way.
  • Taking a submissive role in relationships and doing things such as smoking, eating, drinking, only when you are away so you can't be criticized by a loved one.
  • Lying or distorting the truth to get your point across.
  • Feeling empty and fearful much of the time.
  • Having free floating anxiety and panic attacks.
  • Using the silent treatment to punish loved ones.
  • Allowing someone else to make decisions for you or tell you what to do.

Evelyn Leite, is Author, Counselor, Trainer and founder of Living with Solutions. She has been helping clients deal with issues of grief and loss, trauma, abuse, and addiction for 28 years.