In this 12-minute WHUD radio segment, Rob Weiss discusses the fact that codependency has morphed so much over the years that hardly anyone even knows what it means anymore. Then he explains that his new model of prodependence is a different way of looking at spouses and family members of addicts. Prodependence occurs when people who love an addict stay with that person and work to help that person in ways that are healthy for both the caregiving loved one and the addict.
What is Prodependence?
Prodependence is a new concept in addiction healthcare. It is intended to improve the ways we treat loved ones of addicts and other troubled people, offering them more dignity for their suffering than blame for the problem. With its attachment-focused view, prodependence pushes aside the flaws of the codependency model, which generally suggests that family members of addicts need to “detach with love” and if they don’t neither the family member nor the addict will change or grow. That advice typically leaves loved ones of addicts feeling confused and misunderstood rather than supported and validated. Prodependence approaches the matter differently, choosing to celebrate and value a caregiving loved one’s willingness to support and stay connected with an addicted family member, while promoting healing for the entire family.