Out in the Open

Enablers

You might do it out of love, fear or duty. It can be done with great purpose, or completely unintentionally. And it can happen for worse and for better in some truly surprising ways. This week, from the workplace to the bedroom, Piya asks: Why do we enable?
Sandra Perron poses with her colleagues after the Croatia offensive, 1995. (Courtesy of Sandra Peron)
Listen to the full episode54:00

You might do it out of love, fear or duty. It can be done with great purpose, or completely unintentionally. And it can happen for worse and for better in some truly surprising ways. This week, from the workplace to the bedroom, Piya asks: Why do we enable?

Here are the stories from this week's episode...

Canada's first female infantry officer opens up about harassment, abuse and enabling in the military

During her time in the Canadian Armed Forces, Sandra Perron she says she experienced daily harassment and abuse at the hands of soldiers, including rape. She explains how her coworkers enabled such behaviour, why she chose to leave her job, and what she's doing today to enable a different group of people to succeed in the military.

Crowdfunders backed his adventure, leaving his sister feeling lost in the sea of supporters

OITO producer Danielle d'Entremont's brother Phil took a two-year bicycle trip from Vancouver to the southernmost tip of South America. At first she was skeptical of strangers backing his adventure. But in a candid conversation between siblings, we learn how that sticking point surfaced far greater tension in their relationship, and what it taught them both about enabling.

What happened when one father taught his kids to take public transit to school without him

Adrian Crook wanted to enable independence in his kids. So he empowered his four oldest (ages six, eight, nine and 10 at the time) to ride Vancouver city buses to school and back without him. He ended up being investigated by the Ministry of Children and Family Development. And then he ended up back on the bus with his kids.

Medically assisted sex: How 'intimacy coaches' provide meaningful sexual therapy for people with disabilities

Spencer Williams is a student and writer who has cerebral palsy and uses a wheelchair. That can make it tougher for him to do some things, including have sex. He talks about discovering an 'intimacy coach', someone who offers sexual assistance to people with disabilities. And both he and one such coach, Joslyn Nerdahl, reflect on the value they see in enabling sexual pleasure.

Co-Dependents Anonymous: The 12-step recovery program for people who need to be needed

Are you too submissive? Too controlling? Hyper-sensitive to others' feelings? Do you lack empathy? If you answered 'yes' to any of those questions... you may be 'co-dependent'. OITO producer Sam Colbert visits to a Co-Dependents Anonymous meeting and shares what the people he met taught him about the surprising ways they enable others... and in doing so, stand to hurt themselves.