Stop Condoning Bad Behavior !
I been gone for a minute now I’m back with the jump off 😂😂😂😂. Sorry guys for the long gap in between posts and sadly, this is my second post of the new year smh! Work got crazy and I’m back in school, so time has been limited. Aaaaand of course, I’m coming with something that is going to step on some toes, might even get me deleted/unfriended. But okay here it goes: It’s time that we stop condoning crazy! Just here me out……
Too often, we let things “slide” with those that are closest to us. One of the reasons being is because we don’t want to offend them or cause conflict. But then we move into the enabler category… are we helping them or adding to the problem?
1.) So that home girl of yours, that’s looking for love in the wrong places. You know the one who decided that she was “going to do her” after she got her heart broken. But that care free spirit turned into her putting herself in unsafe situations and having sex with whoever gives her the time of day. It’s obvious she needs to heal or even battle some demons from her childhood or past relationships. But what we do? We applaud her, we laugh while listening to her sexscapades, we encourage her “hoe behaviors”. Am I saying you’re responsible for her actions? Absolutely not. But why is it so hard to tell her she can contract an STD or worse end up getting sexually assaulted or killed?
2.) Ok, so what about our family and friends that don’t half way raise their kids. You know the ones… they have their kids some of the time. But the kids always with somebody else… Not because the mom has to work or has appointments, they just decided they don’t want, cant, or feel like parenting. What do we do? Pick up their slack, which is understandable because it’s not the child’s fault. However, we also make excuses for the parent. “Oh they’re going through something right now or well you know they mama/daddy won’t around”. So we just gonna let the generational curse keep happening and not address it? How long we gonna let the person be stuck in that “bad space” with no explanation? Why is it so easy to talk about other people’s parenting but won’t address those closest to us? I’m not saying pick them a part but at some point we have to stop taking on other peoples responsibilities.
Warning: you might not like the next two examples…..
3.) We all have those family members or friends that love having a good time. But we sometimes question if they know how to turn it off or want to turn it off… & when I say a good time… I mean drugs and alcohol. You know the ones that are always lit, even outside of parties and social events. Sometimes we know when they are going through stressful times because drinking or drug use gets worse. But they’re some of our favorite people to be around, so we don’t say anything. Enabling behaviors are actions that are meant to stabilize or reduce substance use but may inadvertently per- petuate a loved one’s continued alcohol or drug alcohol abuse (Meyers & Wolfe, 2004). They admit to unsafe behaviors, having to use to not focus on things, or joke about forgetting things from drinking. They go to work and function pretty well in society, so they can’t have a problem right? Wrong! They are functional substance abusers. Once again, are you responsible for their behaviors? No, but just think about the next time you see them partying. I know you don’t want to step on their feet, but some people don’t notice things until it’s brought to their attention. Importantly, Orford et al. (2007) found that increased awareness of their family member’s addiction and their ability to see positive alternatives to interact with their loved one’s contributed to participants’ feelings of well-being and optimism. Moreover, reductions in enabling behaviors are associated with positive changes in family member’s well-being and in decreases in their loved one’s substance use (Miller, Meyers, & Hiller-Sturmhofel, 1999).
4.) This one is my favorite. You have any family or friends that you label as “bipolar”? many use the term incorrectly. Bipolar disorder, also known as manic-depressive illness, is a brain disorder that causes unusual shifts in mood, energy, activity levels, and the ability to carry out day-to-day tasks (National Institue of Mental Health). It’s deeper than just mood swings, but I digress. But you know the family or friends that get on your nerves cause they don’t know how to deal with stuff, so we only deal with them in doses. Do you have the family or friends that isolate themselves in difficult times? Or sometimes you don’t even know why , but they randomly disappear from the Earth and then pop back up like nothing happened. I got another one, what about the uncle or cousin with the anger issue? These are all the people we back away from the most. We never want to discuss mental health and how there may be something deeper going on. We just don’t want to be caught up in their drama. For the final time, am I saying you can make them go to counseling? No! But why is it so hard for us to suggest it to them? My people of color especially, we have to do better about our mental health!!
I know most of you are sitting there like “we can’t control others” or “we can’t make people change” and if that’s what you’re thinking...; you’ve missed my point. My point is not that we”fix” others or become responsible for their behaviors, but we simply need to be honest with them and ourselves. It’s so easy for us to gossip about that something that has absolutely nothing to do with us or to comment on celebrity drama. But yet, we won’t address those closest to us. All I’m saying is say something. Stop enabling folks because you don’t want to hurt their feelings. If you really care, do your part and offer some advice or hell, question their actions. I know we can’t change people, but don’t just sit back and watch them self destruct either!
Now that I’ve stired up different emotions in you, I will admit that I’m guilty of being an enabler too. However, I’m choosing not to be anymore. I don’t plan on preaching to anyone or waving my judgement finger, but I will no longer condone crazy! I will not be a part of people destroying themselves simply because I do not want to offend them. Call a spade, a spade! This goes beyond whomever’s behavior we’re condoning. Our spirits are always influenced and effected by those closest to us. Do you really want a part of someone else’s demons?
Are you an enabler?
Meyers, R. J., & Wolfe, B. L. (2004). Get your loved one sober: Alternatives to nagging, pleading and threatening. Center City, MN: Hazelden Publishing & Educations
Miller, W. R., Meyers, R. J., & Hiller-Sturmhofel, S. (1999). The community reinforce-
ment approach. Alcohol Research & Health, 23, 116–120.
Orford, J., Templeton, L., Patel, A., Copello, A., & Velleman, R. (2007). The 5-step family intervention in primary care: Strengths and limitations according to family
members. Drugs: Education, Prevention and Policy, 14, 29–47.
Platter, A., & Kelley, M. (2012). Effectiveness of an Educational and Support Program for Family Members of a Substance Abuser. AMERICAN JOURNAL OF FAMILY THERAPY, (3). 208.