co·​de·​pen·​dent | \ ˌkō-di-ˈpen-dənt How to pronounce codependent (audio) \

Definition of codependent

: participating in or exhibiting codependency

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Other Words from codependent

codependent noun

Examples of codependent in a Sentence

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In both situations, the men hold the power. Binge drinking and drug use are also widespread among the employees, and long hours working in close quarters lead to unhealthy, codependent relationships. Elisabeth Sherman, Glamour, "What Sweetbitter Gets Right—and Wrong—About Toxic Restaurant Culture," 15 July 2019 Appalachia, which has been ground into codependent poverty by the coal industry over the course of a century, has been declining, in coal output and employment, for decades. David Roberts, Vox, "Coal left Appalachia devastated. Now it’s doing the same to Wyoming.," 9 July 2019 Louise is able to mend the dress for her, which sparks the beginning of their dangerously codependent friendship. Hannah Orenstein, Vox, "How do you choose an outfit for a fictional character? 5 authors explain.," 12 Sep. 2018 But if attention is the junk, the media is the junkie's codependent junkie girlfriend. Jonah Goldberg, Alaska Dispatch News, "Media, Trump look like a junkie couple," 4 July 2017 In Mike Nichols’s triumphant adaptation of the vicious Edward Albee play, Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor — known for their turbulent romance offscreen — star as Albee’s unforgettable, bitter and utterly codependent couple. Joshua Barone, New York Times, "What’s on TV Thursday: ‘Portlandia’ and ‘Passengers’," 9 Mar. 2017 New Yorkers, briefly, had seen themselves as members of a fragile, codependent collective, and that helplessness bred a rare willingness to help others and to be helped in turn. Alexandra Schwartz, The New Yorker, "New York Stands Up to Trump," 30 Jan. 2017 That is, until the trio takes a road trip that defines Andy’s true intentions, tests the siblings’ allegiance, and makes Krystal and Donny rethink their codependent lifestyle. Gary Goldstein,, "Quirky comedy 'I Love You Both' tests bond of unusually close siblings," 8 June 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'codependent.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of codependent

1982, in the meaning defined above

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Last Updated

12 Aug 2019

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The first known use of codependent was in 1982

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More Definitions for codependent


co·​de·​pen·​dent | \ ˌkō-di-ˈpen-dənt How to pronounce codependent (audio) \
variants: also co-dependent

Medical Definition of codependent

: participating in or exhibiting codependency a codependant relationship The co-dependent spouse, for example, derives a purpose in life from the alcoholic's need to have someone run the household, help hide the addiction from public view and clean up disasters.— Michael Vincent Miller, The New York Times Book Review, 17 May 1992

Other Words from codependent

codependent also co-dependent noun
What makes chemical dependency a uniquely devastating illness is that the affected person not only suffers physically, but is morally, emotionally, and spiritually sick as well. Family and friends often become codependents and suffer, too. — Peter D. Rogers, The Journal of the American Medical Association, 3 May 1985

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to spread over or through

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