When does assistance become enabling? How do you know when you have stop helping, and are only contributing to the problem? When does a hand up, turn into a hand out?
These are all reasonable, and fair questions. No to situations are the same, and no two people having the same situation are the same. So every situation should be handled individually.
Setting up Lynn S as to how much you will do, and it making clear your expectations of the other, at The beginning allows the outcome to be successful.
Find out up front what is needed. Is it a onetime assist or will it be ongoing? If ongoing, what is the estamated time of need? What is needed to resolve the issue?
What can and should the one needing help be doing?
Once these things are established, it is Time to set goals, to see that it happens. As long as consistent progresss is being made to the satisfaction of all things can be adjusted accordingly. More time may be needed, but as long as you see steady forward progress you know you are on the right path.
If however, the person or a person’s in question start making excuse, and not keeping their end going, put an abrupt end to it. If the reason for obligations not being met are not valid stop your help immediately! Or until such time things can be put back into order.
Most times there are valid reasons for difficulties cropping up. So another Key to success is good communication. Make sure everyone stays on the same page. Make sure everyone involved has all the information that is needed, so everyone can do what they need to do.
Keeping these things in mind will allow a great end.