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Need support with THIS boundary

Old 04-25-2011, 08:43 PM
  # 21 (permalink)  
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I thought he was in recovery? If so then how is it enabling. I dunno, I don't like to kick someone when they are down. But it would be a pain to have to shuttle his butt around town and get old very fast.

Sometimes we overthink this stuff. Who cares what you call it, you don't want to drive his butt around! Tell him that. If he didn't have a drinking issue/recovery then you wouldn't be debating this, you'd tell him.

Less is sometimes more.

Ohmmmm.
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Old 04-26-2011, 12:53 AM
  # 22 (permalink)  
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I asked this before when I was using a different name, but do we sometimes have tendency to be punitive in our withdrawal of help under the banner of enabling.

Sure someone should suffer the consequences of a DUI, but does it preclude helping them get about for valid purposes?

If someone were recovering from another medical illness and couldn't work would we refuse to support them at all, if it were our loved one.

Do we call it 'enabling' with 'alcoholism' but we might call it 'helping' with another illness.

Where does simply being a kind partner end and enabling begin?

I understand that if the alocoholic does not experience the (full) consequences of the addition, they will not seek recovery, but how far do we go?

For me when I have a decision about whether to help with something or not, and I'm leaning towards "not". I have to check in with myself that it is not punitive action on my part.

Al-Anon says we should be encouraging and understanding of the alcoholic, if they are doing good things (working, trying to get home after) I would help if I could as long as it didn't put me out too much.
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Old 04-27-2011, 09:48 AM
  # 23 (permalink)  
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do we sometimes have tendency to be punitive in our withdrawal of help under the banner of enabling.
Yes, we do. It's called Manipulation and it's a very immature way of relating to others.

Sure someone should suffer the consequences of a DUI, but does it preclude helping them get about for valid purposes?
Instead of focusing on what one "should" or "should not" do, I try to focus on what is the healthier choice in every given situation I find myself in.

Where does simply being a kind partner end and enabling begin?
At the point where you are doing for someone else what they are capable of doing themselves but cannot because their own choices and behavior have caused them to not be able to manage their own life. But often we can "handle" continuing to do this for quite a while, and do not even notice there is a problem until WE reach the point where we are doing so much to help someone else manage his or her life that OUR life then becomes unmanageable, chaotic, dramatic, stressful, etc.

If someone were recovering from another medical illness and couldn't work would we refuse to support them at all, if it were our loved one.
This is a common codependent excuse for continuing to enable. The fact of the matter is that our loved one may have a disease, but there are very effective treatments and behaviors they can use to halt the illness. They CHOOSE not to.
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Old 04-27-2011, 01:48 PM
  # 24 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by Learn2Live View Post
At the point where you are doing for someone else what they are capable of doing themselves but cannot because their own choices and behavior have caused them to not be able to manage their own life. But often we can "handle" continuing to do this for quite a while, and do not even notice there is a problem until WE reach the point where we are doing so much to help someone else manage his or her life that OUR life then becomes unmanageable, chaotic, dramatic, stressful, etc.


This is a common codependent excuse for continuing to enable. The fact of the matter is that our loved one may have a disease, but there are very effective treatments and behaviors they can use to halt the illness. They CHOOSE not to.
I dunno, I see the point here but to me it is a leap from helping someone with a ride to say someone is outright enabling and in denial of that it kind of extreme. If you think that ride will open the door for you to start doing all kind of things at your expense then yes, that is a slippery slope (I'm talking about someone in recovery, not an active drinker who lost their license.. etc).
An active drinker who wants to drink over finding recovery to straighten their lives out should never be enabled.

But if someone can't drive because they did drink and paid the price and now they are in recovery, rebuilding their life and making an honest effort at it, I truly don't see that as enabling. Just as it isn't my job to enable while actively drinking, it isn't my job to teach them a lesson now that they are recovered. It is still trying to control the situation. They aren't criminals.

If someone is taking advantage of you, recovered or not, that is never a good thing and that is what this boils down to for me. But it is still ok to help people who are trying to help themselves. Help does not always mean enable just because someone has a past with alcoholism.

By the way, I like this discussion because I know there are different ways to look at it so I am not disagreeing, I just see it differently.
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Old 04-27-2011, 03:55 PM
  # 25 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by Babyblue View Post
I dunno, I see the point here but to me it is a leap from helping someone with a ride to say someone is outright enabling and in denial of that it kind of extreme. If you think that ride will open the door for you to start doing all kind of things at your expense then yes, that is a slippery slope (I'm talking about someone in recovery, not an active drinker who lost their license.. etc).
An active drinker who wants to drink over finding recovery to straighten their lives out should never be enabled.

But if someone can't drive because they did drink and paid the price and now they are in recovery, rebuilding their life and making an honest effort at it, I truly don't see that as enabling. Just as it isn't my job to enable while actively drinking, it isn't my job to teach them a lesson now that they are recovered. It is still trying to control the situation. They aren't criminals.

If someone is taking advantage of you, recovered or not, that is never a good thing and that is what this boils down to for me. But it is still ok to help people who are trying to help themselves. Help does not always mean enable just because someone has a past with alcoholism.

By the way, I like this discussion because I know there are different ways to look at it so I am not disagreeing, I just see it differently.
Totally, I agree there are many different personal ways of looking at and handling this. The above were just my own and I don't expect anyone to necessarily agree with me or follow my way. All I know is I have done the work to determine my own limitations. And for me, the problem with aiding someone (on a regular basis like this--two days a week, every week) because they are in recovery versus not aiding someone because they are actively using, is that looking at it this way still bases MY decisions about how I live MY life on how SOMEONE ELSE is thinking and acting.

So, what happens if he relapses today? Do I all of a sudden stop picking him up? And then next week he says he's no longer drinking, so what then? Go ahead and pick him up just because he said he is now sober? But what if I think I smell alcohol on his breath Monday night? Do I then go and pick him up on Tuesday? Do I accuse him of drinking and then REACT to what I believe he is doing, and then get called crazy for believing it? And then what if he goes out with his buddies Saturday and Sunday and says he's only going to drink this weekend but he'll stop on Monday?

Sorry, I have been all through this scenario and more, with more than just one person over the years. And frankly, I'm tired of making my decisions based on what is going on with someone else. I am very clear on what brings me peace and serenity, and I will do anything to maintain that. I am very familiar with what brings me chaos and makes my life unmanageable, and this happens to be one of them. Someone else's transportation is their responsibility. And if they have no transportation, there are buses and trains and taxis for that. I'm not it. It's just too much for me. I work all day and for the few hours I have available to me at night after work, I want to spend that time doing something that I enjoy, or that brings me peace. HaHaHa, listen to me, I sound like someone expects ME to pick them up two nights a week and I'm defending myself! :rotfxko I know what triggered that: My body is remembering the panicking, sick feeling I would get whenever I thought he was drinking or drugging again. Yech!

Anyway, it may not be too much for someone else who does not have the same issues or preferences as I do. Also, whereas someone else may not yet be "burnt" from helping other people too much, I have reached my limit. Good discussion, thanks for sharing, because my "Original Qualifier" is visiting town soon and I need to be reminded of my limits.
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Old 04-27-2011, 04:17 PM
  # 26 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by Learn2Live View Post
And for me, the problem with aiding someone (on a regular basis like this--two days a week, every week) because they are in recovery versus not aiding someone because they are actively using, is that looking at it this way still bases MY decisions about how I live MY life on how SOMEONE ELSE is thinking and acting.
I agree, making the decision based on whether or not he is in recovery or not is futile. The bottom line for me in this decision (which i haven't fully made YET, is, does it work for me. If not? No ride. If it works for me? No sweat. Doesn't matter to me what he's doing or if his life is disrupted by it.

However:
Originally Posted by Learn2Live View Post
HaHaHa, listen to me, I sound like someone expects ME to pick them up two nights a week and I'm defending myself! :rotfxko I know what triggered that: My body is remembering the panicking, sick feeling I would get whenever I thought he was drinking or drugging again. Yech!
Nice job identifying the trigger! "Doesn't matter to me what he's doing," I just said above... but the truth is, that panicking and sick feeling is what happened when I saw the pics of him drinking on facebook, I was triggered, and thats why i deleted him. I HATE that feeling, and I do fear the triggers, but I need to push through the fear, to grow. When I feel it again, I will know. I am aware, and I will continue to take action. The self awareness is awesome, and scary... but awesome. I'm learning so much, and this post has done a lot for me everyone!! TY!
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Old 04-27-2011, 06:35 PM
  # 27 (permalink)  
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Good for you for deleting him Concerned. I've unfriended a person or two for no particular reason other than the sick feeling I would get when I'd look at their page or they'd post something on my page. I felt bad about it for a little while but then got over that real quick.

To tell you the truth, the actual behavior of the alcoholic/addict or doing things for them did not affect me as much as that sick, panicking, the-world-is-crashing-in-around-me feeling I would get when I THOUGHT the person was drinking or drugging. It is just a gut reaction in me because I know what drinking and drugging spells. That panicking nearly drove me insane (though that wouldn't be a long trip LOL). Any time I feel that with someone in my life, I KNOW immediately that someone needs to GO. But it took me a long time to get to this point in my life.
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