One of the most difficult things to do when you are dealing with a loved one who is abusing a substance is to admit that your attempts to help are actually causing more harm than good. In general when you care about someone it is natural to want to help them, and keep them from harming themselves or anyone else for that matter. This instinct doesn’t go away because someone is an alcoholic, it may actually even become more intense. You can see that your loved one is ill and you want to do anything within your power to help them, and keep them out of trouble.
Is Your Help Really Helping? How Helping Can Actually Be Enabling Alcoholism
The problem is the more that you do to help, and keep them from facing the consequences of their actions the more you are actually becoming part of the problem.
This can be difficult to face, even when you deeply understand that you are doing more harm than good.
Part of this may stem from everyone’s desire to feel wanted. It’s a natural thing to want to be loved, and feel needed by the people you surround yourself with. An addict may be especially grateful when you rescue them from a bad situation. Enabling others can actually become an addiction of its own. It feels good to help others, and that’s what you convince yourself that you are doing.