Most people instinctually want to help when loved ones are in need. But how can we tell when an addict is in need or just using someone for their resources? When we help someone, we are assisting them with something in which they are unable to do for themselves; however, when we enable someone we are assisting them with something they are truly capable of doing themselves and should be doing.
What is Enabling an Addict?
There comes a time when our help turns into enabling, which allows the addict to fully concentrate and feed their addiction. Included in the following are some examples of how loved ones enable an addict:
- Continuously loaning money
- Bail him or her out of jail and pay legal fees
- Make excuses or rationalize the addict’s erratic behavior
Do you find yourself continuously loaning the addict money? If so, chances are you are feeding their addiction. Addicts are extremely good at manipulating others to get what they want. They make others feel as though the money is going towards bills, food or gas. After being arrested the addict calls you crying on the phone saying they will change, this arrest, unlike the others, has changed them and they will seek treatment. So, you bail them out of jail and help pay their legal fees. When others confront you about the addict’s behavior, you find yourself making excuses such as his job is extremely stressful, his marriage is deteriorating or the physical pain he endures is too great.
How to Say No
For some the confrontation of saying no might be too much to undertake at once. Included in the following are some examples of how to define or regulate what is acceptable for the addict in order to have a relationship with you:
- Implement boundaries
- Have expectations
- Stick to your guidelines
One of the most important steps to take in learning how to say no to a loved one is setting boundaries and informing others of these boundaries. By setting boundaries, you are informing others of what is acceptable or unacceptable behaviors that ultimately influence the relationship you have with them. These boundaries can be as simple as no drugs or paraphernalia is allowed at your residence and if you find it, the addict will no longer, no matter the circumstances, be allowed at your residence. Set expectations for your addicted loved one. By setting expectations, the addict will start to encounter repercussions when he acts against them and will have to curb his behavior in order to continue the relationship. Despite the arguments, the struggles and the initial guilt one may feel after saying no for the first time, stick to your boundaries and expectations. By altering your rules, the addict will begin to push the boundaries, ultimately dismissing your needs and wants.
Amphetamine Addiction Treatment
If you or someone you know is struggling with an addiction to amphetamines, please call our toll-free helpline today. Our compassionate counselors are available 24 hours a day to answer your addiction questions and help you find the best treatment available. Stop wondering if you’re doing the right thing and call us today!