Category Archives: Recovery

You Can Run, But You Can’t Hide (From Your Own Self-Love Deficit Disorder)

YOU CAN RUN, BUT YOU CAN’T HIDE, by Ross Rosenberg

Breaking up, quitting or divorcing, will not, by itself, solve your narcissistic abuse problems.  Because the problem is within, not around you, there is no escape.  Therefore, when you separate from your harmful narcissist, run far away, but to where can protect that hurt wounded little child inside of you, who knows nothing about being alone and happy at the same time.  Without healing the core shame that creates your unbearable loneliness, your apparent victory will last only until your next soulmate’s mask falls off.  This is precisely when you will be reminded that there is no running away from the Human Magnet Syndrome.

I wrote this in response to a Facebook friend’s elated comments about breaking up with her harmfull narcissistic boyfriend.  The point of the meme is that Self-Love Deficit Disorder (codependency), is not a result from bad choices or habits, but because of deeper unconscious forces that commander your relationship choices.  The pyramid graphic underneath the meme demonstrates my theoretical position on the matter, and the basis for most of my “Codependency Cure/Self-Love Deficit Disorder/Self-Love Recovery” material.




©Ross Rosenberg, 2017

The 2nd Edition of the Human Magnet Syndrome, which is completely re-written with over 100 pages of new content will be available on Amazon on 12/30/17  and sold on Amazon and at

Clinical Care Consultants Owner
Self Love Recovery Institute
Psychotherapist, Author & Professional Trainer
Author of The 
Human Magnet Syndrome

Creator of “The Codependency Cure: Recovering from Self-Love Deficit Disorder” seminar

SELF LOVE RECOVERY INSTITUTE                         


The Codependency Cure (2nd Book) Update
I just finished writing the final chapter (of three) that is necessary for my book proposal. I have been working on this for 4 months! After my professional editor Thomas G Fiffer finishes editing it, it will be sent to a publisher.  
I am hoping to receive an acceptable offer by early November.  In this  case, I will  start writing the other 10 chapters (see below). I estimate the book being completed by November 2017.The three chapters are entitled:
Chapter 3: “Codependency” No More – The Self-Love Deficit Disorder Story
Chapter 6: Organizing The “Codependency Cure.” A Six Stage Recovery Model

Chapter 8: Stop Wrestling with “Pigs!” The Observe Don’t Absorb Technique

Proposed Table of Contents
Forward: Another author will write?
Introduction: The Journey to Self-Love: Breaking Free to Recovery
Chapter 1: “Magnets” and “Cures:” The New Codependency Landscape
Chapter 2: Codependency, Narcissism, And The Human Magnet Syndrome
Chapter 3: “Codependency” No More – The Self-Love Deficit Disorder Story
Chapter 4: Paleopsychotherapy: Uncovering Trauma Fossils
Chapter 5: Codependency Addiction: “Hooked” on Your Narcissist
Chapter 6: Organizing The “Codependency Cure.” A Six Stage Recovery Model
Chapter 7: Hitting Bottom – From The Ashes the Phoenix Does Rise”
Chapter 8: Stop Wrestling with “Pigs!” The Observe Don’t Absorb Technique
Chapter 9: Finding Your Voice: Setting Boundaries in A Hostile Environment
Chapter 10: Maintaining Safe & Secure Boundaries
Chapter 11: Healing the Wounded Child Technique
Chapter 12: Discovering Self-Love: Building A Self-Love Foundation
Chapter 13: Relationship Math: The Addition of Two Self-Loving Individuals
Chapter 14: Reaching Self-Love Abundancy – The Codependency Cure

Ross Rosenberg, M.Ed., LCPC, CADC, CSAT © 2016
Clinical Care Consultants Owner
Advanced Clinical Trainers Owner
Psychotherapist, Author & Professional Trainer
Author of The Human Magnet Syndrome: Why We Love People Who Hurt Us













BPD, codependency, codependency author, codependency expert, dysfunctional relationships, human magnet syndrome, love advice, love help, narcissism,narcissism author, narcissism expert, narcissist abuse, narcissistic abue, narcissistic abuse, narcissistic abuse syndrome, narcissists, npd, relationship advice, ross rosenberg, why he love people who hurt us,  addiction expert, aspd, best codependency book, best narcissism book, BPD, codependency addiction, codependency author, codependency book, codependency cure, codependency expert, codependency help, codependency treatment, human magnet syndrome, narcissism, narcissist, narcissistic abuse, narcissistic victim syndrome, npd, observer don’t absorb, pathological narcissists, ross rosenberg, ross rosenberg author, self-love, self-love deficit disorder, sldd, trauma expert, trauma resolution


The OTHERS Serenity Prayer


We have choices about our relationship with ourselves. We can live our lives out as our own worst enemy and unknowingly being a partner to the insidious and self-harming forces of Self-Love Deficit Disorder.

Or, we can allow ourselves to risk being vulnerable and courageous enough to admit that our primary problem is with ourselves. Admitting that we are the main reason we cannot love ourselves unconditionally is a daunting and risky proposition. It changes our focus from the world is unfair and unkind to us, from we are an obstacle between the world and ourselves in finding compassion, empathy and love for ourselves.

The primary obstacle to achieving self-love abundance (SLA) is the treacherous and predictable part of us that reflexively, almost instinctively, over-judges, over-condemns, or over-predicts our lack of importance or lack of worthiness to others.

Self-Love Abundance is created by our new-found ability, that unfolds slowly but progressively, to be accepting, gentle, patient, and forgiving to ourselves. Moreover, SLA is created by being optimistic with our predictions of worthiness.

How can we ever really love anyone fully, if we are mercilessly hard on ourselves?  We can’t. It is time to take this updated version of the serenity prayer to heart!

Ross Rosenberg

Codependents Also Hurt Their Children


Ross Rosenberg, M.Ed., LCPC, CADC, CSAT

depressed girlAlthough the codependent parent is harmed by their narcissistic partner, their codependency should not be considered a valid excuse for not protecting their children. Even with the all-powerful Human Magnet Syndrome, the adult codependent parent, like all other adult parents, carries the responsibility to care for and defend their children. However, the stark and most unfortunate reality is they predictably fall in love with pathological narcissists who they feel intractably bonded to, despite feeling abused, neglected and/or deprived. And when they become parents, they often choose staying in the relationship with the harmful narcissist over protecting their children.

Most codependent parents sincerely do not wish any harm to befall their children. In fact, they go to extraordinary measures to stop, mitigate or buffer the narcissist’s harm or abuse of the children. Despite their best intentions, they are unable to stop the resulting disregard and/or mistreatment that everyone in the family is forced to endure, except, of course, for the offending narcissist. The codependent’s inability or unwillingness to shield the children co-creates a toxic family environment in which the children are harmed and their future psychological health is compromised.

The codependent’s compulsive desire to satisfy the narcissist’s insatiable selfish needs, while also trying to control or coerce them to behave less narcissistically, results in a depletion of their energy, time, focus and emotional resources, which would otherwise be given to the children. Trying to control a person who, by definition, cannot be controlled, while unsuccessfully seeking love, respect and care from them, results in a hamster-wheel experience where their physical and emotional resources are exhausted. Tired and beaten down, they often shut down and disconnect from their parental responsibility to protect their children (and themselves).

Although I am suggesting that codependents share responsibility for the harm of their children, caution must be taken when attributing blame. Codependent parents similarly grew up in a family in which all the children were held captive by the neglect and/or abuse of a codependent and pathologically narcissistic parent. They are clearly victims of their childhood environment. In addition, without their attempts to protect their children and the love and nurturing they did give them, the sum total of psychological harm to the children would be far worse compared to being raised solely by a pathological narcissist.

Many a codependent client has lamented over how much they resented and were angry at their codependent parent for not protecting them and not divorcing or leaving the abusive narcissist. In fact, these same clients recall numerous occasions when they could have been protected or removed from harm’s way, but were not because of their codependent parent’s distorted sense of responsibility, loyalty and feelings of completely powerlessness. Adding insult to injury, their need for security, nurturing and safety was traded for their parent’s fear of living alone and feeling shameful, broken and pathologically lonely.

Often, in the beginning of codependency treatment, my clients are unable to wrap their arms around the concept that their “wonderfully loving and nurturing” codependent parent should share any responsibility for their neglectful or abusive childhood. After working hard in codependency-specific psychotherapy, there comes a time when the codependent client is psychologically healthy enough to let go of the “good” codependent parent fantasy, and realistically hold them partially responsible for their traumatic childhood.

Although this process often begins with anger and a need for accountability, it eventually transforms into a willingness to empathize, accept and forgive their codependent parent. In the process of being honest about who their parent really was and how much they were harmed by them, they are able to “own” their own codependency, while better understanding what they are doing or have done to their own children.

The codependent parent who disassociates from their Human Magnet Syndrome fueled desire/attraction to pathological narcissists also harms their children. Although this type of codependency, which I have coined “codependency anorexia,” protects both the codependent and her children from narcissistic abuse, it is still harmful.

By depriving oneself from psychologically healthy, intimate adult companionship and the children from a second parent, the children are ultimately deprived of another adult who deeply loves, respects and cares for them, and who is unconditionally committed to their life-long welfare. In addition, they are deprived of an opposite sex parent who provides an alternative gender perspective and form of nurturing. In addition, raising a family, while purposely avoiding a romantic or intimate partner, sends a message that such types of adult relationships may be dangerous and harmful.

Codependency anorexia often results in the codependent parent unfairly and inappropriately seeking to meet their emotional, social and personal needs through their children. This form of enmeshment is often referred to as emotional incest, which is harmful to a child’s psychological development.

The purpose for writing this article was not to slam or denigrate codependents, as I am a recovering codependent and a psychotherapist who is dedicated to helping this unique and underserved population. It is my intent to raise awareness about the dysfunctional parenting dynamics that are unique to the codependent/narcissist relationship, while giving codependent parents a loud but supportive wake-up call.

Yes, despite your giving, sacrificing and altruistic motives, you too are hurting your children. Even with your superior parenting skills and your genuinely loving ambitions, you are still a partner to the dysfunctional process that is harming the people you love most. I am hopeful that this article will inspire and motivate you seek help for your addictive and compulsive self-harming pattern of being stuck and frozen in relationships with pathological narcissists. Join me in protecting our nation’s most valuable resource: our children. 


Road to Recovery with Top Addiction Experts: Jack Canfield, Melody Beattie, Ross Rosenberg, John Gray, Gabor Mate

Top Thought Leaders Share Their Insights on Codependency

Second Annual Recovery Today Online Conference: May 2 – 6.

This NO COST event showcases the voices of celebrities, top professionals and thought-leaders delivering cutting-edge scientific, spiritual, and practical approaches to treating and overcoming addictions of all kinds. The online conference is for all the spouses, ex’s, parents, siblings, and children who love or have loved an addict too.

Do you have a friend or family member struggling with co-dependency, addiction whether it’s substance abuse, love, sex, food or internet addiction? You’ll want to get on this FREE Recovery Today Online Conference to find out cutting-edge scientific, spiritual, and practical approaches to treating and overcoming addictions of all kinds.

You’re going to learn new powerful tools and techniques to self-care, boundaries, how to discover YOUR own authenticity and how to become aware of the parts of YOURSELF that are closed off when YOU are an ‘active’ codependent.

It’s got an all-star line up of celebrities, therapists and experts, like Jack Canfield, Dr Gabor Mate, and me!  Just one of those strategies can help you shift your half lived or tumultuous life to one of hope, awareness, authenticity, aliveness.

Save your seat for this online.  REGISTER HERE


Codependency Redefined! The New Codependency Definition

Codependency is Problematic

Codependency is a problematic relationship orientation which involves the habitual and reflexive relinquishing of power and control to individuals who are either addicted or who are pathologically narcissistic.  As a result of their compulsive and repeated attraction to narcissists and/or addicts, they try, but rarely obtain, mutuality and reciprocity in their relationships.  By habitually choosing narcissistic or addicted companions, friends and/or romantic partners, they perpetuate their resentment for being disrespected, undervalued and often unloved. Codependents steadfastly believe that, with enough time, empathy and sacrifice, they will get what they need and deserve from their narcissistic partner.  Despite not getting what they most want and believe they deserve, they do end the relationship with the narcissist.

Codependency is subdivided into two categories: passive and active.  Passive codependents (PCs) vigilantly avoid conflict or the disappointment of others.  Although all codependents suffer from low levels of self-esteem, PCs are more insecure, anxious, conflict avoidant, and reactive to being alone.  Hence, they tend to tolerate controlling, dangerous and/or abusive narcissists.  Their passivity is manifested in their carefully, if not meticulously, executed control strategies – most of which are intended to fall under the narcissist’s radar.  Because of the secret and hidden nature of their control strategies, PCs are perceived as weaker than active codependents.

Active codependents (ACs) more boldly and overtly try to control or manipulate their narcissistic loved ones into meeting their LRC needs.  Being less afraid of conflict and retribution, they unapologetically attempt to control their narcissist into meeting their expectations and needs.  Since the narcissist is neither interested nor capable of satisfying the AC (or PC), the relationship often erupts into openly hostile episodes of conflict, arguments and verbal, emotional and/or physical abuse.  Active codependents are often mistaken for narcissists because of their openly controlling and often manipulative demeanor.  Even though they are never able to get what they most want, they are compelled to keep trying.

While the AC may seem stronger, more in control and more confident, both the PC and AC share the same deeply imbedded insecurities and feelings of powerlessness.  Both hold onto the codependent delusion, which is the belief that “one day” their pathologically narcissistic partner will realize their mistakes and wrong-doings and finally give them the love, respect and care they so desperately want and need.  It just never happens.


Ross Rosenberg,
3325 N. Arlington Heights Rd., Ste 400B
Arlington Heights, IL  60004
(847) 749-0514 ext 12

My Favorite 12-Step Acronyms

DENIAL = Don’t Even Notice I am Lying
ANGER = Allowing yourself to Not Get Everything in Recovery
BIG BOOK = Believing In God Beats Our Old Knowledge
DETACH = Don’t Even Think About Changing Him/Her
HALT = Hungry, Angry, Lonely, Tired TIME = Things I Must Earn
LIFE = Living in Fullness everyday
NUTS = Not Using The Steps
PACE = Positive Attitudes Change Everything
SLIP = Sobriety Loses Its Priority
SOBER = Son of a bitch, Everythings REAL
STEPS = Solutions To Every Problem in Sobriety
TIME = Things I Must Earn
WILLING = When I Live Life, I Need God