Signs you are enabling an addict

Signs you are enabling an addict

Often times when people close to an addict try to “help” them, what they are actually doing is allowing the progression of the disease. These family and friends of the addict do not know this is what they are doing. This unknown and baffling phenomenon is called enabling. Enabling takes many forms but they all have the same effect: they allow the addict to avoid the consequences of their drug use and drinking. This, as a result, allows the addict to continue on their merry way, secure with the knowledge that no matter how much they screw up, someone will always be there to save them from their mistakes.

So if you think you are enabling an addict, how do you know?

It is important when looking for signs you are enabling an addict to know the difference between enabling and helping. Knowing the difference between enabling and helping an addict is the first step to recognizing the signs.

So what is helping? Helping is doing something for someone that they are not capable of doing themselves.

What is enabling? Enabling is doing for someone things that they could, and should be doing themselves. The key word there most of the time is the “should”. Many addicts may not be capable of doing things for themselves but often times those things are things they should be able to do. Doing those things they should be able to do on their own is enabling.

So what are the signs you are an enabling an addict?

After realizing the difference between helping and enabling you can probably think of a few signs you are enabling without this post. But we are going to go ahead and give you some of the most common signs that you are enabling an addict.

  1. You call in sick to work for them because they were too tired or hung over. This is classic enabling at its best. There is no reason any other person should be calling work for the addict. That is something they can and should be doing.
  2. Bailing them out of jail or paying their legal fees. This is another very common sign that you are enabling an addict. Once again paying fees and landing in jail are consequences they should be facing and can deal with.
  3. You don’t talk to them about their drug use because you are afraid of their response. An addict should be dealing and have to recognize the way they are affecting you and everyone around them. Don’t hold back out of fear. This is just allowing the behavior to go on.
  4. Loaning money. This is so common in people who are enabling an addict. You want to help so the addict doesn’t starve but the truth is they are probably just using the money to get high. An addict is capable of feeding themselves and should be doing just that. So even if they claim to be starving do not give them money.
  5. You threaten to leave and then don’t leave. Empty threats just reinforce to the addict that they can get away with whatever behavior they are acting out in. This is enabling them to continue on doing what they are doing with the assurance that you will still be there and that even if you threaten it means nothing. Stick by your word no matter how hard it is!

These are some of the most common signs you are enabling an addict. Remember that it may seem really hard to not want to save the addict but you have to remember that you are not saving them you are allowing them to continue hurting themselves. So actually when you do these things you are fueling their addiction. You may not be able to stand the sight of them hungry or in jail but just trust me when I say it is when they have to face those things that they will finally see what a problem they have. It is easy to deny a problem when you never go hungry or have to face consequences. Stop enabling and when the addict asks for help (to go to treatment) be there.

Do I Need Therapy?

Do I Need Therapy?

There was a time where even if you didn’t really need therapy you probably should still get therapy just because of its added benefits. But if you really only want to utilize therapy if you really need it than this blog is for you. It can sometimes be difficult to have enough self-awareness and insight to realize that you need therapy. Usually some event has to happen in order to trigger the awareness that you might need some help or just someone to talk to. Luckily there are ways to know if you are looking for answers if you need therapy.

Here are some signs that you might need therapy:

  • If you’re unable to function as you normally do.
  • If you feel unlike yourself – if you’re sleeping a lot more, or more anxious, or less sociable, or just in a weird mood you can’t shake – then don’t simply resign yourself to a less-satisfying life. You need therapy.
  • If you’re dealing with an issue you’ve never dealt with before and it’s making you anxious and unsure about how to proceed. Every now and then, unprecedented situations might come up that make you feel stuck or uncomfortable. Getting therapy offers the chance to talk about ideas with a neutral party who doesn’t have a stake in the outcome.
  • If you need clarity or reassurance. We so rarely give ourselves time to sit in peace and think through the things we’re experiencing. But if you book a therapy session, you’re committing to an hour of sitting and talking through whatever is on your mind.
  • If you’re falling into old patterns or dealing with old issues that aren’t healthy. We all have negative habits and tendencies, for example smoking or possessiveness in a relationship; that we have to actively work to suppress. But if the battle starts to seem way more uphill, it’s a sign that you can’t handle it on your own and may need therapy.
  • If you’re want to gain greater insight into your behavior. Sometimes we can get stuck and aren’t really sure how to make the changes we want to see in our lives. The right therapist can help show you why you make the choices you make, which should help you to make any changes.
  • If you can’t get past an interpersonal conflict. It’s common for family members to become estranged or even simmer indefinitely over the same old issues. Trying therapy can help bring the two of you closer together, or at least help you figure out how to stop contributing to the problem.
  •  If you have difficulty moving beyond any particular issue in your life. Sometimes we have problem to address and don’t know where to start whether it’s related to your love life, family life, self-image or professional stability.

Most people can benefit from therapy and needing therapy doesn’t mean that there is anything wrong with you it just merely means that you want to better your life and your surroundings. There is no reason that you have to settle for anything than the best life for yourself and that’s why if you need therapy you go out and start getting it!


History of Therapy: Albert Ellis

History of Therapy: Albert Ellis

Albert Ellis, Ph.D., was born in Pittsburgh, PA on September 27, 1913 and was raised in New York City. He held an M.A. and Ph.D. in clinical psychology from Columbia University. Albert Ellis held many important psychological positions that included: Chief psychologist of the State of New Jersey and professorships at Rutgers and other universities. More importantly, Albert Ellis was the founder of Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy (REBT), the first of the now popular Cognitive Behavioral Therapies (CBT).

In 1954, Ellis began teaching his new techniques to other therapists, and by 1957, he formally set forth the first cognitive behavior therapy by proposing that therapists help people adjust their thinking and behavior as the treatment for emotional and behavioral problems. Two years later, Ellis published ‘How to Live with a Neurotic’, which elaborated on his new method.

Albert Ellis established the Albert Ellis Institute in 1959. The Albert Ellis Institute is a non-profit organization whose mission was to promote Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy as a educative and preventative theory. The Albert Ellis Institute promoted Rational Behavioral Therapy’s practice and theory through training professionals and the public. Initially Albert Ellis ran everything from his own private practice as a psychologist. Then Albert Ellis purchased a six story townhouse in Manhattan in 1964. He took that town house that had previously been occupied by The Woodrow Wilson Institute and used it for his work. Albert Ellis donated the earnings of his books to purchase the building and to fund the running costs of the Institute.

Albert Ellis practiced psychotherapy, marriage and family counseling as well as sex therapy for over sixty years at the Psychological Center of the Institute in New York. Albert Ellis also served as president of the Division of Consulting Psychology of the American Psychological Association and of the Society for the Scientific Study of Sexuality. He also served as officer of several profession societies including the American Association of Marital and Family Therapy, the American Academy of Psychotherapists, and the American Association of Sex Educators, Counselors, and Therapists.

Albert Ellis was ranked one of the most influential psychologists by both American and Canadian psychologists and counselors. He also served as consulting or associate editor of many scientific journals. He published more than eight hundred scientific papers and more than two hundred audio and video cassettes. 

During his final years he collaborated with Michael S. Abrams, Ph.D., on his only college textbook Personality Theories: Critical Perspectives. Albert Ellis also wrote an autobiography entitled “All Out!” published by Prometheus Books in June 2010. The book was dedicated to and contributed by his wife Dr. Debbie Ellis who Ellis described as “The greatest love of my whole life, my whole life”. He also entrusted the legacy of REBT to her. In early 2011, the book Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy by Dr. Albert Ellis and his wife Dr. Debbie Ellis was released by the American Psychological Association. The book explains the essentials of the theory of REBT and is considered an excellent basic guide in understanding the REBT approach for students and practitioners of psychology as well as for the general public.


How Do You Become a Therapist?

Becoming a therapist can be a very rewarding career. You get to help others and enrich their lives. But how do you become a therapist? What sort of education and credentials do you need?

Before you explore the educational and experience you will need to become a therapist, you first need to decide what kind of therapist you want to be. There are many different specialties to choose from. Do you want to work with children or adults? Would you like to focus on individuals, families, or couples? Do you want to specialize in a specific mental disorder like anxiety, depression, substance abuse, or eating disorders? Do you want to provide group or individual treatment? Would you like to work independently, with a couple of other therapists, or at a therapy center? Once you have decided what sort of therapist you want to become, you will be ready to take the next step.

For most people who want to become a therapist, the best place to start is by earning a bachelor’s degree in psychology. For most therapy positions you will also need at least a master’s degree, and some mental health professionals need MD or doctorate degrees. A clinical psychologist usually needs a doctoral degree, a psychiatrist must complete medical school, a therapist, on the other hand, can usually get by with just a master’s degree. The type of mental health professional you wish to become will determine your educational requirements. If you already have a bachelor’s degree in another subject, don’t despair! People with undergraduate degrees in other fields are often accepted into graduate training programs provided they make up some of the prerequisite coursework.

If a master’s degree is too big a commitment for you, you can always become a counselor .If you are interested in working with children, adults, families or couples, becoming a licensed professional counselor can be a great choice. To become a counselor, you generally need a bachelor’s degree in counseling. Fields include mental health counseling, school counseling, community counseling, rehabilitation counseling, substance abuse counseling, guidance counseling and vocational counseling.

In some states, those who wish to work in substance abuse treatment or social work can become a therapist without a degree, but they are usually required to complete a certain number of clinical hours working with patients. Check out the requirements of your state!

Once you have completed the required coursework, you will usually be required to take a state licensing exam. Again, this varies depending on the type of therapist you wish to become and the requirements of the state you want to work in. For some specialties, you will need to complete a certain number of hours of training and work experience to be eligible for certification. Usually, there will also be a provision on how many hours of work experience need to be completed under the supervision of a licensed mental health professional.

Once you have decided what kind of mental health professional you wish to become, it is important to discuss your options with an academic counselor at the school of your choice.

Tips for Finding a Therapist

Tips for Finding a Therapist

By Jenny Hunt

Finding a therapist can be a daunting task. There are so many different areas of specialty, methodologies, and accreditations to consider when finding a therapist, it can be overwhelming. Psychiatrist, Psychologist, Marriage & Family therapist, Family Counselor, Licensed Professional Counselor, Social Worker, the list just goes on and on and we haven’t even considered all the PHD’s and MD’s at all. Therapists of any kind provide help for those seeking mental health counseling and each brings experience, insights, and individual character to the table. How can you go about finding a therapist who is right for your needs?  These tips for finding a therapist will be helpful in your search.

1.) What type of therapy do you need? The first step in finding a therapist is asking yourself, ” What kind of therapy do I need?”.  What is the main issue you are dealing with? Are you having relationship problems? Dealing with past trauma? Suffering from depression or anxiety? Isolating the main area of concern is helpful when finding a therapist. Therapists usually specialize in different areas, so it is important to find one with experience in the area that you need. Keep in mind that if you are suffering from a problem that may require medication, you should probably look for an MD. Only therapists with a medical degree can prescribe medication. If you’re not sure what kind of therapist you need to see then consult with your normal doctor to receive a referral.

2.) Can I afford it? Therapy can be very expensive, so cost is important to consider when finding a therapist. Most insurance plans cover mental health therapy. Make sure you check with your insurance company before you book an appointment with a therapist. Find out about any co-pays or deductibles you may have for this type of treatment. Make sure that you can afford to cover your portion of the costs of therapy.

3.) Can I respect and trust my therapist? Whenever possible, try to meet potential therapists before the first session. Trust is the most important consideration when finding a therapist. Without trust in your therapist, you aren’t likely to make much progress in therapy. For some people, sex of the therapist is an important consideration. Some may be more comfortable with a male therapist, while others feel better in the presence of a female. For other people, the therapist’s life experience may be the deciding factor. Often, people struggling with an addiction will be able to relate to a therapist who has been through the same battle. It is important to consider your comfort level when finding a therapist.

4.) What do his other patients think? Sometimes the easiest way to finding a therapist is asking around. If people you know respect the therapist, he or she may be worth checking out. If no one you know has been treated by the therapist you are considering, Google the therapist’s name. Often you will find reviews and ratings posted by the therapist’s past or current patients. You may not want to put too much stock in any single review. However, if many of the therapist’s patients say the same things about him or her, it may be something to consider when you make your decision. A better source of information is your primary care doctor. Call the office for a referral or ask for one at your next appointment.