Anyone who has a loved one addicted to drugs or alcohol can feel pretty helpless while watching them struggle. Having a direct conversation can sometimes be enough to start their road to recovery, but other times it takes a more focused, serious approach.
An addiction intervention is a planned process involving family and friends. It also can include a member of your loved one’s faith and is done in consultation with a doctor, drug counselor or intervention specialist.
Goals of an Addiction Intervention
In an intervention, a group of people will gather to ask your loved one to get treatment. He or she will also be confronted about the consequences of their actions.
The intervention will:
- Provide specific examples of destructive behavior and the impact these have on friends and family members.
- Offer a pre-arranged treatment plan with clear steps, goals and guidelines.
- Spell out what each person will do if your loved one refuses treatment.
Ready to Hold an Intervention?
Setting up an intervention is undoubtedly scary and you are probably wondering how to know when the time is right. Ask yourself these three questions to determine if you are ready to head up this process.
– Can I lay out the points without enraging my loved one?
– Will I be able to form an inner circle of his/her loved ones to assist me?
– Will I be able to follow through with this, even if there is a negative outcome from the event?
Strategies for Success
The most important thing during any intervention for addiction is to make sure your loved one doesn’t feel cornered, which could make them retreat. There is a balance between being impactful, while not scaring them away.
Top 10 Tips
Follow these 10 tips for a successful and smooth addiction intervention:
- Choose your team wisely – Everyone at the intervention should have a meaningful relationship with your loved one.
- Find the right time to talk – Choose a time when the person should be sober and in control of themselves.
- Use a private, formal setting – Find a neutral spot. Do not use the family home where your loved one could feel too comfortable and even retreat to their bedroom.
- Pay attention to the order of the speakers – For example, you may want to start with a child or someone he or she has a close relationship. A spouse (or closest relationship) could go last when they are feeling most vulnerable and ready to change.
- Hold rehearsals – These can help the family be ready for any emotional outbursts or any situation that comes up.
- Stick to the script – Spend time creating and going over your script. Don’t improvise.
- Use open, warm body language – Keep your arms and legs uncrossed and look at the person you are speaking to.
- Keep tempers under control – Don’t place blame in your script and remain calm.
- Develop a backup plan – Have a plan in place for every difficult scenario.
- Don’t give up – Some people might need multiple talks in order to be convinced that they need help. Don’t give up if it doesn’t work the first time.
Ready to Start the Process
A successful intervention must be planned carefully in order for it to work as intended and get your loved one to enter a drug addiction treatment program. Be sure to consult an addiction counselor who can suggest the best approach and walk you through the process. The key to success is to go into the intervention with love and compassion. When you are ready to start the journey and set up a treatment program, contact us for help.