Drug and Alcohol Addiction: The Enabler

Last modified: July 29, 2013 07:23:39 AM

Drug addiction and alcohol addiction not only hurt those addicted, they hurt the addicts’ families and friends in ways that can be completely devastating emotionally, mentally, and financially.  The people who get hurt the most are often those who are closest to and love the addict unconditionally, and end up enabling the addict’s substance abuse rather than risk their anger or displeasure.

An enabler is someone who is in denial about the addict’s problem and unreasonably hopes that the problem will somehow just go away.  An addict makes an enormous amount of demands on their enabler and feels entitled to expect the enabler to drop everything to “help them out” one last time; however the demands and neediness are limitless and endless.  The enabler will always give way in order not to anger their loved one who is an addict or lose their love.  The manipulation is constant and grows with the addiction; the enabler, by constantly agreeing or doing what the addict wants, only sweeps the problem under the rug; the increasing denial goes hand-in-hand with the increasing substance abuse of the addict.  An enabler often has just as many emotional and mental problems as the addict, and the addict cannot recover if an enabler refuses to deal with his or her own issues with co-dependency.

Enablers lie, provide alibis, complete tasks, make excuses and will cover up for an addict so that the addict needn’t take responsibility and suffer the consequences of his or her actions.  Enablers rationalize the substance abuse, coming up with reasons why the drug or alcohol abuse is understandable or even acceptable.  “But no one has given him a chance in life” or “well, he’s had hard times,” or “she’s just ended a long relationship and needs a crutch to get through the day” are common refrains heard from enablers who refuse to see the seriousness of the abuse.  Enablers will also give addicts untold sums of money to feed the addiction so that the enabler doesn’t suffer the addict’s ire.  Enablers will go so far as to get loans for the addict and can get into crippling amounts of debt rather than lose the addict’s love.

Enablers withdraw from the addict emotionally or even physically, avoiding contact, hoping that this may encourage the addict to stop his or her destructive behaviour.  Enablers will also blame and get upset with the addict for the failure to stop the substance abuse.  An enabler will try to control and be responsible for the addict, who they themselves have made irresponsible by making excuses , etc., for them, by attempting to cut the supply, limiting it, or throwing it out.

Enablers also threaten that the addict will suffer the consequences of his or her actions, but never follow through and continue the enabling behaviour, further feeding the addict’s problems.

The enabler is addicted to rescuing the addict; both will deny that there is a problem and both parties will sink deeper and deeper into their destructive habits.  The only way that a person can recover from alcohol or drug addiction is for both parties to get the help they desperately need to deal with their emotional and mental issues.

FDA to Crack Down on Unregulated Oxycodone

Last modified: July 31, 2013 11:03:37 PM

Don’t be so quick to make a beeline for your painkillers—they may not be FDA-approved.

In a statement released July 5, the Food and Drug Administration reveals its plan for a severe crackdown on the companies that have been marketing versions of oxycodone for years, without FDA clearance. Continue Reading