What is Enabling?

Enabling in the context of addiction refers to the behavior of family members, friends, or other individuals who support or assist an addicted person in continuing their substance abuse. This can include behaviors such as lying for the individual, making excuses for their behavior, or covering up their substance-related problems. Enabling can occur because the person wants to protect the addicted individual from the consequences of their actions or because they believe that they are helping the individual in some way. However, enabling behaviors can actually worsen the addiction by removing natural consequences and providing the individual with a sense of security in their substance abuse. This can make it more difficult for the individual to seek help or make changes to their substance use. It is important for loved ones to recognize the difference between helping and enabling and to seek support for themselves and the addicted individual.

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