I consider myself a reasonably well-adjusted human being. I’m a self-employed professional with a large circle of friends. I’m an introvert, but I enjoy spending time with people and have a varied social life. I love cats, but I don’t think I’m a crazy cat lady. So I have a few cat-themed decorations around my house. Okay, a lot of cat-themed decorations. And yes, I do carry pictures of my cats in my wallet. But really, I’m not a crazy cat lady!
People who love too much are often called codependent. Webster’s defines codependency as “a psychological condition or a relationship in which a person is controlled or manipulated by another.” Sounds like a typical human-feline relationship to me — aren’t most cat owners controlled by their cats? In other words, isn’t that perfectly normal?
I decided to dig a little deeper and actually came across some check lists that are meant to help you determine whether you love your cat too much. The first question:
How much do you allow your cat to interfere with your daily life?
I work from home, so my cats are part of my daily life. But I don’t consider that interfering. In fact, I consider myself lucky that I can be with them while I work. So maybe the person coming up with this question just wasn’t really a pet person. Next question:
Do you refer to your cat as if she were human?
Occasionally guilty. But I always know that I’m doing it, so that makes it okay, right?
Does your life revolve around the daily requirements of your cat?
Guilty again. But doesn’t everyone’s life revolve around their pet? Why else have one? Moving on.
Do you relate to your cat to the exclusion of relationships with family and friends?
Whew! I can honestly answer no to this one. (I told you I’m not a crazy cat lady.) So all things considered, I don’t think I have a codependent relationship with my cats.
But then I got to this question:
Do you forego going out of town because you don’t want to leave your cat?
And there you have it. Guilty as charged. Anytime the prospect of even a short trip looms, I get stressed about it. Even though we have the best pet sitter in the world, who comes to visit at least twice a day when I’m away, I still fret and worry the whole time I’m gone. Most of all, I just plain miss my girls.
If that means I love my cats too much, then so be it.
Photo above is with Amber.