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Best 20 Codependency Books You Need To Read

Best 20 Must-Read Books On Codependency

This post contains some of the best codependency books to help you on your healing journey.

Codependent behavior is a problem for many people.

Codependency also varies in degrees of severity.

The good news is you can learn to love and enjoy yourself and your relationships.

Disclosure: Some of the links below are affiliate links. This means that, at zero cost to you, I will earn an affiliate commission if you click through the link and finalize a purchase.

What Is Codependency?

Codependency is a disorder of selflessness, passivity, and personal powerlessness.

Codependents seek happiness and meaning in others. They become consumed with the needs and desires of others.

Codependents confuse caretaking with love and they repeatedly find themselves attracted to partners who are a perfect counter-match to their uniquely passive and submissive attitude.

They end up feeling unappreciated and used.

As a codependent, you may struggle with the following issues:

  1. Perfectionism, 
  2. People-pleasing, 
  3. Boundary setting, 
  4. Love addiction,
  5. Shame,
  6. Emotional abuse, 
  7. Trauma,
  8. Anxiety 
  9. Depression,
  10. Low self-esteem,
  11. Poor communication,
  12. Lack of self-awareness.

Best Codependency Books

1. Codependency For Dummies

by Darlene Lancer

Codependency For Dummies is one of the most comprehensive book on the topic to date. It describes the history, symptoms, causes, and relationship dynamics of codependency, along with a clear plan for recovery with exercises, practical advice to help you know and honor yourself.

Read: Best 10 Relatable Codependency Blogs That Will Speed Up Your Recovery (+FREE Resources on Codependency)

2. Codependent No More

by Melody Beattie

Melody Beattie has helped shaped the self-help industry with her honest and compassionate words. Her overnight sensation, Codependent No More, has been influencing millions for over twenty years with instructive life stories, personal reflections, exercises, and self-tests.

3. Facing Codependence

by Pia Mellody

In her book, Pia Mellody creates a framework for identifying codependent thinking, emotions and behaviour and provides an effective approach to recovery.

Read: Best 50 Codependency Affirmations For Recovering Codependents

4. The Language of Letting Go

by Melody Beattie

The book includes daily meditations to remind us that the best thing we can do is take responsibility for our own self-care.

5. Women Who Love Too Much

by Robin Norwood

Therapist Robin Norwood describes loving too much as a pattern of thoughts and behavior which certain women develop as a response to problems from childhood. The book will help you recognize the roots of your destructive patterns of relating and provide you with a step-by-step guide to a more rewarding way of living and loving.

Read: Best +35 Codependency Quotes Every Codependent Needs To Read

6. The Codependency Recovery Plan

by Krystal Mazzola

The Codependency Recovery Plan empowers you to have healthy, happy interdependent relationships where you stop people pleasing, start setting boundaries, and start asking for what you need.

The book includes an actionable five-step program that is designed to help you get in touch with yourself, assert boundaries, and communicate confidently.

Read: Can A Codependent Relationship Be Saved? Top 7 Powerful Strategies That Will Break Codependency In A Relationship

7. Conquering Shame and Codependency

by Darlene Lancer

In Conquering Shame and Codependency, Darlene Lancer sheds new light on shame: how codependents’ feelings and beliefs about shame affect their identity, their behavior, and how shame can corrode relationships, destroying trust and love. She then provides eight steps to heal from shame, learn to love yourself, and develop healthy relationships.

Read: Best 20 Healing Shame Exercises To Break Free From Toxic Shame

Get FREE Overcome Codependency Worksheets

Related: How to Heal Codependency and Savior Complex? Top 12 Strategies to Overcome Codependency For Good

8. Facing Love Addiction

by Andrea Miller, Keith Miller, and Pia Mellody

Pia Mellody is internationally recognized dependence and addiction authority. In her book, she unravels the intricate dynamics of unhealthy love relationships and shows us how to let go of toxic love through twelve-step work, exercises, and journal-keeping.

Related: How To Stop Love Addiction? Top 5 Proven Steps to Overcome Love Addiction

9. Stop Caretaking the Borderline Or Narcissist

by Margalis Fjelstad

Caretakers give up their sense of self to become who and what the Borderline or Narcissist needs them to be.

In her book, Margalis Fjelstad describes how people get into a Caretaker role with a Borderline or Narcissist, and how they can get out.

Read: Best 9 Tips On How To Receive More In Life And Relationships?

Codependency WorkBooks

10. The Codependency Workbook

by Krystal Mazzola

The book includes with evidence-based tools and exercises to help you free yourself from codependency and reclaim your sense of self.

Based in cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), these practical exercises are designed to help you set goals, challenge and replace negative thoughts, identify your triggers, manage conflicts, and reduce stress.

Read: How To Break Codependency Habits For Good? Top 13 Codependent Habits to Quit Today

11. Codependent No More Workbook

by Melody Beattie

The Codependent No More Workbook is an accessible and engaging workbook that offers a Twelve Step, interactive program to stop obsessing about others by developing the insight, strength, and resilience to start taking care of themselves.

The book includes hands-on guided journaling, exercises, and self-tests, that will help you start setting and enforcing healthy limits; developing a support system through healthy relationships with others and a higher power; experiencing genuine love and forgiveness; and letting go and detaching from others’ harmful behaviors.

Read: How To Stop Being A People Pleaser?

Books On Boundaries

12. Set Boundaries, Find Peace

by Nedra Glover Tawwab

The instant New York Times bestseller helps you end the struggle, speak up for what you need, and experience the freedom of being truly yourself.

Licensed counselor and one of the most influential therapists on Instagram Nedra Glover Tawwab demystifies this complex topic in a relatable and inclusive tone.

Read: How To Set Boundaries In A Toxic Relationship?

13. Boundary Boss

by Terri Cole

In Boundary Boss, psychotherapist Terri Cole reveals actionable strategies, scripts, and techniques that can help you stop abandoning yourself for the sake of others (without guilt or drama) and get empowered to consciously take control of every aspect of your emotional, spiritual, physical, personal, and professional life.

Read: How To Set Boundaries With Narcissistic Parents?

14. Boundaries

by Henry Cloud and John Townsend

Dr. Henry Cloud and Dr. John Townsend offer biblically-based answers to these and other tough questions, showing us how to set healthy boundaries with our parents, spouses, children, friends, co-workers, and even ourselves.

WorkBooks On Boundaries

15. The Set Boundaries Workbook

by Nedra Glover Tawwab

This is an accessible, step-by-step resource for setting, communicating, and enforcing healthy boundaries at home, at work, and in life.

Sought-after therapist and relationship expert Nedra Glover Tawwab presents clear explanations and interactive exercises to help you gain insight and then put it into action.

Read: Why Nice Guys Suck? Best 19 Practical Strategies To Stop Being The Nice Guy

16. The Better Boundaries Workbook

by Sharon Martin

This is an evidence-based workbook that will show you how to set healthy boundaries across all aspects of life—without sacrificing your kindness or compassion for others. You’ll learn to define your boundaries and discover why they’re so important for your emotional well-being.

Books On Perfectionism

17. Overcoming Perfectionism

by Ann W. Smith

In her book, Smith describes the key differences between overt and covert perfectionism; the role early attachment, temperament, sibling relationships, and life circumstances play in developing this pattern; and how to shift toward a center of balance for a more fulfilling life.

The book will help you learn how to identify and confront the root cause of your problem, how to reveal and accept your essence, and finally, learn the importance of forgiveness and letting go.

Read: How To Escape Perfectionism? Top 20 Practical Ways to Overcome Toxic Perfectionism (& Get Things Done)

18. How to Be an Imperfectionist

by Stephen Guise

This book applies the science of behavior modification directly to the roots of perfectionism, resulting in a new and superior method for change.

WorkBooks On Perfectionism

19. The CBT Workbook for Perfectionism

by Sharon Martin

This workbook will help you identify the root causes of your perfectionism and the ways it is negatively impacting your life. Rather than measuring your self-worth by productivity and accomplishments, you’ll learn to exercise self-compassion, and extend that compassion to others. You’ll also learn ways to prioritize the things that really matter to you, without focusing on attaining fixed goals.

Read: Best 60 Perfectionism Quotes To Overcome Perfectionism

20. The Perfectionism Workbook

by Taylor Newendorp

In his work as a clinical therapist, Taylor Newendorp has successfully used cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) to help countless patients who live with the immense pressure of perfectionism and other related issues.

The Perfectionism Workbook offers actionable exercises to help you overcome the barriers created by perfectionism and develop skills for living a healthier, more gratifying life.

Codependency Worksheets

How Codependency Books Can Help

Codependency books can be incredibly helpful for individuals who are struggling with codependent patterns in their relationships and personal lives.

Here are a few ways in which these books can assist:

1. Understanding Codependency: Codependency books provide valuable insights into what codependency is, its causes, and its effects. They help individuals recognize their own codependent patterns and behaviors, fostering self-awareness and understanding.

2. Identifying Enabling Behaviors: These books often outline common enabling behaviors that perpetuate codependency. By recognizing these patterns, individuals can begin to break free from the cycle and establish healthier boundaries.

3. Developing Self-Esteem: Codependency books often emphasize the importance of self-esteem and self-care. They provide practical strategies and exercises to help individuals boost their self-worth, cultivate self-compassion, and develop healthier relationships with themselves and others.

4. Setting Boundaries: Effective boundary-setting is crucial in overcoming codependency. Codependency books offer guidance on how to establish clear and healthy boundaries while also respecting the boundaries of others. They provide strategies and techniques to communicate effectively and confidently assert one’s needs and desires.

5. Building Healthy Relationships: These books provide valuable insights into building healthy relationships based on mutual respect, trust, and interdependence. They offer tools and strategies to foster authentic connections and navigate conflicts in a healthy and constructive manner.

6. Healing Emotional Wounds: Often, codependency stems from unresolved emotional wounds. Codependency books frequently address healing past traumas, developing emotional resilience, and working towards self-growth and personal development.

7. Support and Validation: Reading about other people’s experiences and struggles with codependency can provide a sense of validation and support. It helps individuals realize they are not alone in their journey and that recovery is possible.


It’s important to remember that while books can be a valuable resource, they are not a substitute for professional therapy.

If you are struggling with codependency, seeking the guidance of a qualified therapist can provide personalized support and assistance tailored to your unique needs.


By Hadiah

Hadiah is a counselor who is passionate about supporting individuals on their journey towards mental well-being. Hadiah not only writes insightful articles on various mental health topics but also creates engaging and practical mental health worksheets.

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