Kim Buck, LPC and CSAT, joins the show, to share her excitement in the concept of prodependence, and her own experience in integrating it within the treatment of her own clients. Kim has over 15 years of clinical experience as a therapist and works in multiple modalities depending on the clients needs. As the Clinical Director at Family Strategies Counseling Center in Arizona, she runs treatment programs for hundreds of people. She and Rob also talk about the difference between the codependence and prodependence models, and the changes she has seen firsthand in her treatment centers when implementing this model.
[2:31] Kim heard about the concept of prodependence and was an early adopter, using it in her own practice. The concept of codependency helped in her own recovery, however there were concepts in the model that she found shaming and blaming towards the partner experiencing betrayal. Prodependence addressed those issues for her, and she aligned with it due to how it lessens the blame of the betrayed partner.
[8:02] Kim started rewriting some of the curriculum for the partners to integrate the prodependency model. She now has three active prodependence groups for partners of sex addicts, and they learn how to take care of themselves and set boundaries in this time of crisis.
[11:56] The first goal of Kim’s work is to help them sort through the mess of their partner’s actions, and offer them support and hope. If they need the additional work, it will come organically. However, oftentimes in the early stages of treatment, people just need support and understanding while they are in crisis mode.
[17:34] Prodependence invites the addict to look in the mirror and not blame the other partner for their actions. It increases the chance that a betrayed partner will come back and question what they did in the past, creating a mutually agreed upon opening to explore and grow.
[22:45] For Kim, she had some fundamental issues with some of the concepts of codependency, and found that prodependency served to depathologize rather than pathologize. It removes the idea that the partner has an illness that is causing the partner to act out, and instead understands that most often they are just trying their hardest to solve a problem dragging their life down the drain.
[28:01] The goal of codependency which is self care and detachment is valid and necessary, but trouble comes in when blame is placed on the partner and sees them as part of the problem.
- “Most people are just trying to help someone they love, and figure out their life.”
- “If you are married to or involved with an addict, there is nothing in the world you can ever do to make that person drink, use, or act out.”
- “The partners come in with a lot of trauma. They are trying to manage the crisis and the craziness.”
- “They are not trying to fight through a label or diagnosis when they walk through our door.”
- “We don’t make someone wrong, we make them right.”
- “Find another partner of an addict who doesn’t feel crazy.”