Episode 16

How To Identify and Change Enabling Behaviors

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Episode 16

Peaks endeavors down what enabling a loved one may look like before, during, and after a treatment episode, and gives some input as to how to appropriately build boundaries or break co-dependency dynamics.


1. We talk about what enabling an individual can look like before the family decides that treatment is the next step

2. We move forward into what enabling can look like while your loved one is in addiction treatment. 

3. How codependency plays into family dynamics and addiction.

4. Lastly, we speak on what enabling can look like post addiction treatment

5. The balance between nurturing a loved one and not feeling like you’re walking on pins and needles post-treatment.

Select Quotes

No family member wants to watch their family member be in pain. So a lot of the time it is those little decisions to get somebody out of the immediate pain that is like enabling behaviors, but it gets them out of the immediate pain so it seems like the right thing to do at the moment. We’ll worry about recovery down the road, or we will set the new boundaries tomorrow, but tonight they need to get out whatever discomfort they are in, so I’m willing to do anything at that moment for them. But it’s that aggregated over time that leads to these really chaotic environments.

Jason Friesema, MA, LPC, LAC, Chief 

You start to slip into this moment where you are enabling rather than empowering. Because healthy good support after a treatment episode or while someone is in active recovery is all about empowering them to continue down this journey. Enabling starts to take them further off that path rather than challenging them to figure out ways to maintain what they are doing, to figure out a way forward, to get themselves out of discomfort on their own.

Clinton Nicholson, MA, LPC, LAC Chief Operations Officer

Episode Transcripts