Watching someone you love battling a substance addiction can be incredibly difficult and painful. It is hard to watch a loved one struggle and it is natural to want to help them in their time of need. But certain forms of assistance can actually have the unintended perverse effect of helping your loved one maintain their addiction, an effect known as enabling.

The damaging effects of enabling behavior make it an important concept to understand, but it can be difficult to distinguish from supportive behavior. The major difference is that enabling behavior shields a person from the consequences of their actions, allowing them to continue to act in an irresponsible manner, though even this distinction can be difficult to make.

It is important, therefore, to know some of the characteristics that may be indicative of enabling behavior:

  • Keeping the addicted person’s behavior secret
  • Making excuses for the addicted person’s behavior
  • Blaming other persons or things for the substance addiction
  • Bailing the addicted person out of trouble or loaning them money
  • Failing to follow through on threats

If you believe that someone you love may be struggling with a substance addiction, it is important to act in a way that encourages them to get treatment rather than helps maintain their addiction.

The Asana Recovery Center offers a comprehensive detoxification and residential treatment program that can help those at any stage of addiction. Call us at (949) 438-4504 to learn more about our programs and facilities today.