Saying NO to Manipulation: What Happens When We Enable an Addict?

In my last post, I wrote about Jessica’s manipulation of her parents and how they consistently gave in to her demands, allowing her disruptive and destructive behaviour to continue.

By accepting that behaviour and not challenging their daughter, Jessica’s parents enabled her for many years. They posed no consequences for her and set the bar very low in terms of their expectations—and Jessica continued to live up to exactly the standard that they set.

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Are You the Loved One of an Addict? Saying NO to Manipulation

I am a firm believer that we teach other people how to treat us.

The way people treat us generally has its roots in the way we treat ourselves as well as how we decide to show up in the world. Are we assertive and clear with our boundaries, or do we allow other people to push us around? Do we practice healthy self-care, even while we may be caregivers to family members? Is our self-respect non-negotiable, even when we are experiencing difficulties in our lives?

Or—do we allow anxiety and fear to rule us when we encounter situations that we simply can’t control? Do we go along to get along, giving in to what other people want just so that we can avoid conflict?

If you are the loved one of someone with an addiction and you are allowing yourself to be manipulated, it’s important to ask yourself why you’re doing that—and to be as honest as you can in your response. One of my favourite sayings comes from Eleanor Roosevelt, who so aptly told us, “No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.” When we choose to feel inferior to someone else—when we put someone else’s needs ahead of our own on a fairly consistent basis rather than take care of ourselves, we act in ways that allow that person to manipulate us.

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The Truth about Bullying – And What We Can Do about It

Pink Shirt Day will soon be upon us. On February 25th, we are being encouraged to wear something pink to unite us in working together to prevent bullying in our schools, in our communities, and online. I’m very glad to know that we, as a society, are continuing to take this issue seriously—it affects more people every day than we could ever know.

Bullying has likely been around since the beginning of time. It has always been an integral part of the concept of survival of the fittest in the animal world, and we humans have been pitting ourselves against each other in aggressive ways for a very long time, in a variety of ways. However, with the advent of the Internet and all its many forms of social media, we are now privy to what is going on in people’s psyches and lives in a much deeper, more obvious way.

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Addiction and Relapse: A “Normal, Expected” Part of Recovery?

Have you ever noticed that the same issue sometimes bombards us from all angles for a while? It’s funny how life seems to come in themes.

Lately I’ve been receiving a number of articles into my inbox, talking about addicts who relapse after they come out of treatment—or even after many years of sobriety. Most of these writers are telling me that relapse is a ‘normal part of recovery’ from addiction. Some are even trying to differentiate between a lapse and a relapse, as if that jargon matters or is important. Basically, they’re saying that relapse is to be expected—and that we should not be too surprised or upset by it.

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Lassana Bathily – A True Hero

Just like everyone else in the free world, I’ve been increasingly disturbed about what’s going on. I, too, feel worried and apprehensive, with so many questions and very few answers. Mostly I wonder about how these atrocities could have gone on for so long now, with no one putting a stop to them. I’m wondering how much longer our politicians and world leader believe they can continue to assuage us with what now feel like empty words, such as, “We will catch them and make them pay.”

“Pay”? What does that really mean anyway? Could there possibly be any consequences that would actually be appropriate for the horrors these gruesome bullies of the world are inflicting upon others as we speak? Considering that they want to ‘die as martyrs,’ even death seems to be little incentive to them. I can’t help but wonder—what will it take?

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