Family Support: Are They Enabling or Loving?

Many people who have abused substances have pushed their families to the limits. They don’t know what to do anymore. Listen in as these members talk about what their families can do to help or hurt their recovery.

Discussion Guide:

Many parents know that they can’t keep their child safe.  But they may feel compelled to tolerate certain behaviors that they perceive as the lesser of the evils. Can you think of examples of trade offs that a parent may make to keep their child alive and functioning?

Where should a family draw the line with helping behaviors?

Are interventions effective?

What about tough love? Is it helpful ?

Should a family member pay for substance abuse treatment?

How many treatments?

At what cost to themselves?

Supplemental Reading:

Enabling Addiction: Are You Loving Someone to Death? at

Five Things Families Can Do to Support Recovery of a Family Member by William L. White at