When your loved one has a drug or alcohol addiction, you can be consumed with fear and anxiety. The constant worry can be detrimental to your physical and emotional health. Anxiety and fear can disrupt your normal daily routines, and despite your best effort, you become an enabler. When you enable someone, you unintentionally encourage your loved one’s self-destructive behavior.

There is a difference between enabling and being supportive. To avoid enabling, you need to set boundaries to protect yourself and your loved one. When you stand firm in your boundaries, your loved one will know what is and is not acceptable.

Anxiety and fear can unknowingly contribute to your enabling. When your loved one is addicted to drugs or alcohol, you can go through a range of emotions. Levels of anxiety and fear can be crippling and you could feel emotionally drained. Enabling your loved one could reduce levels of anxiety and fear, but you are contributing to his or her destructive behavior.

To avoid enabling your loved one, learn more about the behavior of a person who has a drug and alcohol addiction. Go to group therapy, attend AA or NA meetings, or join a drug and addiction forum. Meet other people who have loved ones struggling with an addiction and listen to their experiences. Talk to families who are coping with their loved one’s addiction.

A person’s mental health issues can contribute to his or her using drugs. Over time, excessive drug or alcohol use causes a physical addiction, and the brain needs more of the substance to function. Do not shame or degrade your loved one. That may intensify self-esteem issues and lead them to use more drugs and alcohol to cope. Set boundaries, do not enable him or her, stay positive and encourage them to get treatment. This will show that you care and love them.

Do not blame yourself for your loved one’s addiction and understand you cannot control addiction. A person with a drug or alcohol addiction must want to change his or her lifestyle to live substance free. Save your loved one’s life and encourage him or her to go to treatment.

If you or a loved one is struggling with addiction or substance abuse, get help today. Nexus Recovery Services is an exclusive experience for individuals who truly want a change and specializes in treatment for addiction. Our mission is to provide tools and support for every client’s seamless transition into a meaningful and fulfilling life of sobriety. We offer a free and confidential consultation. Call us to get started: 310-881-9151

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