Are You Enabling an Addict?
People battling addiction and/or alcoholism need support from their loved ones to make progress. After a recovering addict/alcoholic returns from drug rehab in Santa Rosa, their loved ones should create an environment that supports and facilitates their recovery. They should also change their behavior in order to ensure they aren’t enabling the person’s addiction or temptations.
Oftentimes, the loved ones of an individual battling an addiction think they’re helping them by taking steps to delay the consequences of their actions. In reality, they are enabling the addiction. Enabling a loved one can have damaging consequences and the person may relapse, instead of turning over a new leaf.
There is a fine line between enabling and helping. This line is often blurred. There are four patterns of enabling relationships:
• Fear-based enabling
• Hope-based enabling
• Guilt-based enabling
• Victim-based enabling
Addicts and alcoholics may threaten their loved ones when confronted. Some common threats include self-harm and severing ties with the people who matter. In many cases, family members avoid talking to the addict or alcoholic about their addiction problems to avoid conflict. This is known as fear-based enabling.
Hope-based enabling happens when the addict or alcoholic gives false hopes to their loved ones promising to turn over a new leaf and their family members continue supporting their addiction to ensure progress is not lost.
Instead of taking responsibility for their actions, many addicts and alcoholics may blame a loved one for their addiction problem. The loved one goes through a guilt trip and gives into their demands. This is known as guilt-based enabling.
Many addicts and alcoholics tend to play the victim card, claiming that they’re a victim of circumstance. By shifting the blame away from themselves, they’re able to convince their loved ones to support their addiction.
Here are some signs you may be enabling an addict:
• You are providing them with money to support their habit and pay their bills
• You often defend them for unacceptable behavior
• Instead of confronting the situation, you try to avoid it
• You believe that you have control over the situation and try to change the person’s behavior
• You often try to take on more than your share of responsibilities
• You fail to maintain boundaries
• You fail to recognize your own needs
• You state bad behavior will have consequences, but fail to follow through
Life-Rock is committed to providing those struggling with addiction emotional and mental support to aid them on their recovery. We are a sober living environment that provides our residents with guidance every step of the way. Have questions? Call (707) 575-9100 for men or (707) 575-9599 for women.