Are You Enabling an Addict?


Enabling is any activity that encourages the addict to engage or maintain their addiction.

Enabling makes it less easy for the alcoholic to continue drinking, the drug addict to obtain morphine and use, the compulsive gambler to visit the casino, the sex addict to cruise pubs and the compulsive buyer to go on another spending spree.

Enabling can be subtle. For most people, it can take a long time to realize that they unwittingly contribute to their loved one’s addiction.

The enabler try to ‘fix’ the problems that arise from their loved one’s addiction. The addict is protected from the consequences of his action. He’s never made to take full responsibility of his action.

Too often, family members or friend may have good intentions to help their loved addicts, but they could also inadvertently provide them the opportunities to continue their addictive behaviors. For example;

Rebecca, 42, is a single mother. His boy, Sunny, is in college. He uses drugs.

Rebecca had always given him everything he needed. He had plenty of money at school so he would have plenty of time for study.

When he was withdrawn from his first school for allegedly using drugs, his mom did everything she could to get him into another college.

Sunny is in his third college and he continues to use. He is never reprimanded. He doesn’t study or work, yet he has a nice place to live, plenty of money, and all the independence he needed.

Enabling behaviors can include;

  • Covering up or making excuses for the addict. For example, calling their bosses to say they are sick and can’t come to work
  • Helping with the bail of the addict when he’s arrested
  • Taking on the responsibility of the addict. When you perform the task the addict should be doing, you’re enabling
  • Providing him money that allows him to buy alcohol or gamble
  • Pretending not to have noticed the addiction and ignoring they don’t need help
  • Helping to pay off the addict’s debt when he had borrowed money to support his addiction.
  • Keeping alcohol in the house
  • Providing the addict a place to live when he’s been kicked out by his family

Thanks for reading!!