Enabling is usually done out of love although it is an action that keeps someone who has struggled with drugs and alcohol to get the help that they need to get sober because they are kept from hitting their bottom.
Once someone does finally get sober, they can often find that they will unknowingly carry the torch of enabling others into their own lives or constantly trying to people please. This may lead them to Al Anon to enhance their substance abuse program. On the flip side, there are Al Anon members that attend Al Anon meetings that realize that they may also have a problem with drugs and alcohol when they initially thought that addiction only applied to a loved one.
There is a term in the recovery world that is dubbed for a recovering addict or alcoholic who also needs assistance with codependency or vice versa – a double winner. Both programs work in different ways to change a person’s thinking by showing them how to coexist with others through considering another’s need and without taking on their burdens.
A double winner will traditionally attend both Al Anon and Alcoholics Anonymous, have a sponsor in each program, and work the 12 Steps separately in both programs. Now a day, there are 12-Step meetings that are specifically made for someone who is considered a double winner to help them cope with their addiction and their codependency in a way that can show them how to manage staying sober while maintaining healthy relationships.
To find a meeting for double winners you may have to ask around the rooms of Al Anon and Alcoholics Anonymous because there is no real website that promotes these types of meetings. This secret society of double winners is not necessarily approved by either Al Anon or Alcoholics Anonymous. Al Anon, in fact, will not allow anyone to become a Group Representative if they are affiliated with Alcoholics Anonymous.
If you need dualistic help and go to both Al Anon and Alcoholic Anonymous, you really cannot lose. The name double winner is for someone who is trying to better themselves in their life by using the best of two worlds and there is no doubt that these “winners” will be twice blessed for their efforts.