Ah, love. It can enrich our lives, provide meaning and support, and reduce stress. Healthy, intimate relationships can even help you live longer. But the pursuit of love and actually maintaining a relationship can sometimes be a source of significant pain in our lives. In other words: Love ain't always all it's cracked up to be.
Developing your own identity and solid sense of self can sound like a tall order. However, it is also the foundation we need if we are to develop a healthy relationship with another person. It would be ideal to have that in place first, but often people jump into relationships while they are still settling into their relationship with themselves. Thus, as you navigate relationships it's important to keep yourself in check and recognize some of the characteristics of a healthy relationship as well as the telltale signs your relationship is codependent.