Contagious Emotions: Staying Well When Someone You Love Is Depressed

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9780671702403: Contagious Emotions: Staying Well When Someone You Love Is Depressed
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A guide for friends and relatives of those suffering from depression presents case histories of the codependent nature of depression

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Depression wears many faces, asserts Podell, co-founder of the Center for Mood Disorders in Los Angeles: it can be mild or severe, biological or psychological, and can manifest itself as sadness, anger, apathy or some other emotion. The friends and family of depressed people are emotionally at risk themselves, for they can become "fused" with the depressed person--that is, become locked in a mutually harmful cycle whereby negative behaviors in one partner beget negative behaviors in the other. This vicious cycle, which Podell believes can occur in any relationship (even one with a pet), is particularly insidious when depression is a factor, because the nondepressed person can so easily believe that he or she is helping the depressed one. This, writes Podell, is "codependency any way you slice it." First describing fusion in a relationship, Podell next shows readers how to "defuse" 'first' earlier in sentence by managing themselves and then the loved one, and finally explores the process of reconstruction after defusion. Similar to other codependency manuals, this one, written with freelancer Shimer, also urges the reader to consider the partner's needs as well as his or her own, but without becoming a martyr.
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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