And yes, I feel I have the right to be. 🙂
Don’t get me wrong. The only one I have to blame is me. I’ve made choices over the years to be an enabler.
Hi, I’m Debi. And I’m an enabler. (Imagines all the “Hi Debi”s coming from the group).
Why? I can probably give you all sorts of excuses. But oh, wait. Guess I should first tell you who I’m talking about.
I have two very special men in my life. One that I gave birth to and one that I intend to grow old with. One is 26. The other is 42. And no, I’m not always sure which one is the more mature one. It sorta switches back and forth.
So, about those excuses.
1. Because I want the best for them
2. It’s because I love them
3. It’s because I don’t want the younger one to still be like that when he’s the older one’s age
4. Because if I don’t do it, it won’t get done (fill in the blank on whatever “it” is…laundry, vacuuming, setting appointments, shopping, wake-up alarms for work…you get the idea)
And there’s days like today that it just all comes to a head because I’m super tired and I’m feeling super unappreciated … and I blow.
I can’t always be the GO TO person. I don’t even WANT to be! Once in a while I just want to have someone else doing it all so I don’t have to.
Will it happen. Well, it does sorta.
The older one rents movies so we can relax together once in a while. He also works on keeping two vehicles up and running (not an easy task with the currents “works in progress” we own right now). He checks on me to see how I feel when work has yet again kicked my butt (and that’s even when he’s feeling just as bad or worse from the same job). He scrubs the shower out on occasion. He does laundry. And he takes out the trash.
The younger one also takes out the trash. He does the dishes. He’s shops for himself and checks to see if there’s anything I need. He listens to my rants even when he doesn’t get them or doesn’t care. He’s been pretty good lately at keeping his bathroom clean so I can use it if I want. He’s job-hunting. And he just kicked ass on two semesters of college! He says he’s gonna pay the bills for me when he gets a job so I can quit my job and focus on getting my business where I want it.
Ok, so all-in-all I’m doing pretty well. It’s not them that I’ve gotta work on… it’s me… the enabler. If I don’t try to keep up with all THEIR stuff and just handle MINE, maybe I’d be less stressed? But then I always go back to the fact that that only works when the decisions they make don’t affect me.
Yes…PROOF that I am truly an enabler… but did I mention, they also make me laugh, they bring me tea when I don’t feel well, and they run errands for me when I just don’t feel like going anywhere. 🙂
Welcome to my life… and thanks for being there for support and to lend an ear! 🙂
p.s. The book you see at the top of this post is available at Amazon. I haven’t read it yet, but there were a couple of reviews that really got my attention. One mentioned that it’s a short read and talks about the fact that enablers see themselves as protectors of those they love. The other mentions how enablers feel that they have to “DO IT ALL” for their family members. Time to see if my “helpful” nature is being a “hinderance” to the people I love most!