Three Tips That Seem Cruel But Might Help You Stop Enabling Your Addicted Partner
Do you know that your seemingly "nice" actions to a partner abusing drugs can fuel his or her addiction problem? This is called being an enabler, and there are measures you can take to stop it. Here are three examples of such measures:
Don't Clean Up After the Addict
Many addicts get so high that they cannot remember their actions when they get sober. If you have such a partner, then you may be tempted to look after him or her so well that he or she may not even know how bad his or her situation was.
For example, some people get so drunk that they soil themselves, vomit in the house, or even sleep on the street. You should resist the temptation to clean up such a person; you want to leave the evidence intact. When he or she wakes up, he or she should be able to see just how bad the drug is via the evidence left.
Secondly, you should do your best to make your life autonomous from him or her. If you depend on an addict, then you will naturally feel compelled to "cover for him or her" so that you don't suffer too. Consider an example where your partner drives you to work, takes the kids to school, or is the chief breadwinner. You may feel that it is your duty to protect him from the consequences of his or her actions.
For example, when he or she gets drunk and doesn't go to work, you might lie to the boss that he or she was sick. This encourages the addict to continue with his actions. Instead, you should strive to get some source of income so that he or she can be reprimanded at work if he or she messes up. Get a car so that you don't have to drive whenever he or she is high; failing to meet his or her appointments might open his or her eyes.
Open a Separate Account
Lastly, you should not let your addicted partner ruin your family finances. Consider this scenario: you have a joint account with your partner, and when he or she receives his or her pay, he spends all the money on drugs within a week. For the remainder of the month, he or she has to draw on the family cushion money for gas or even further drug abuse. Before month end, your accounts are in the red.
Although it might seem cruel, it is actually helpful if you open a different account to handle the family finances. Let him or her deplete her money and continue to suffer (maybe hitch rides to work) for the rest of the month. This helps the addict to learn from the consequences of his or her actions.
These three tips will help you stop being an enabler for your partner. Ultimately, however, you should do your best to get him or her to an appropriate drug addiction treatment program to deal with the root of the addiction problem. Treatment, like at Olalla Recovery Centers, can help you both.