Are You Crippling Those You Love?

"Are You Crippling Those You Love?" is my blog post asking you to consider if you are truly being a support system for your loved ones or if your being sung a sad song they use to have an excuse to stay where they are. ~Sometimes we can feel as though we must do all that we can to help those we love and in turn the reality is that instead of helping them we’re hurting them and ourselves.~ Coach Sam

Each year many people say that they need to make changes and are well intentioned about those changes they want to make. However, on the other end of the spectrum, every year people commit to “helping” others when the sad truth is they’re hurting them instead.

So, the question I have for you today is are you crippling those you love? If you’re not sure let’s look at these things:

You Do Things They Can Do for Themselves

It’s easy to think we’re being helpful by helping others. However, there is a difference in helping and allowing a grown able body person to use and manipulate you.

You see, when you’re doing things like their laundry, cleaning their house, and making sure they eat on a regular basis, but this person doesn’t suffer from any aliments that prevents them from doing these basic things for themselves, you are an enabler.

I know you love them and want the best for them, but if they won’t wash their own clothes, clean up behind themselves, or fix their own food that means they feel it’s not necessary for them to do.

And why would they when you keep showing them through and with your actions that you will do so. As an adult you must allow them to take care of themselves because if you don’t, you’ll create a dependent relationship with a person who has no desire to be responsible for their own well-being.

You Clean Up Their Messes No Matter What

I know you want to fix it and all their troubles. However, that’s not your job. You are not responsible for solving someone else’s problems, especially not at the expense of yourself.

If you’re saying people don’t do that. I’m here to tell you indeed they do and call it help. In fact, I’ll give you a real-life example.

An adult child gets in trouble with the law. They end up needing an attorney and help paying their bills. Yet, this adult child chooses to quit their job and live with their parent knowing the parent has a fixed income.

Now, the child is looking to the parent as though they’re in a crisis so the parent is paying for the child’s way of life, which causes the parent to be without food and their medicine.

And while it’s a tough situation for a parent to see their child suffer, in this case the child’s actions caused additional bills in their life and instead of getting an additional job the child quit the job supplying income.

As a parent, especially if you’re on a limited income, you should not be paying all your child’s bills. And your child shouldn’t expect you to especially when your child knows you can afford to do so without hurting yourself.

You Give Excuses Why You Must Help Them

No one else can help them…

No one else will help them…

No one else cares about them…

No one else understands them…

You see, excuses come in many shapes and forms too numerous to list…

But one thing they all have in common is they keep the person you claim to care about in a cycle of staying comfortable where they are, which stunts and stops their ability to grow and evolve.

If every time that friend comes knocking or calling you find yourself helping you need to take a moment an assess if your friend needs your help or if your help is a tool they take for grant and know they have at their disposal.

Because we really do teach people how to treat us by the way we accept and tolerant how they treat us.

Yes, we all experience rough patches in life and still one of the responsibilities we have as adults is to navigate our life. The key word being our – so there are some times and somethings we need to handle without singing a sad song or burdening someone else with our troubles.

And when we ask someone to help us, it should be clear we also helping ourselves and not expecting them to be a savoir.

We ought not take people’s kindness and favor towards us for granted so I encourage you to evaluate the people and relationships in your life to determine if you have a one-side emotional, financial, or time-consuming relationship.

If you do, you need to take steps to eliminate or distance yourself from this relationship. In the case you can’t you need to take time to create boundaries to establish that you won’t continue allowing your love for them to cripple them.

Are you wondering how to do so?

First, start off by letting them know you do still care and want the best for them. This is important because you don’t want them to think that you’re throwing them by the way side, wish bad things for them, or are angry with them.  

Secondly, explain specific instances where they have taken your kindness, resources, and or time for granted and be consistent with them as your goal here is to express how their pattern of behavior is hindering them from being better and taking advantage of you.

Next, set a new standard. Your standard will vary depending on the circumstance you’re speaking to them about. However, make it clear, realistic, and a firm boundary you will hold them to. Because it makes no sense to set a boundary people can walk all over as though it doesn’t exist.

~Sometimes we can feel as though we must do all that we can to help those we love and in turn the reality is that instead of helping them we’re hurting them and ourselves.~ Coach Sam


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