Watching a loved one struggle with drug or alcohol addiction is heartbreaking, and family members are often desperate to do anything in their power to help. Unfortunately, family members may get dragged down by their loved one’s addiction, causing them to feel powerless or as if they are unable to help. In cases where family members don’t know the next step to take because someone is refusing to go to rehab, drug and alcohol interventions can help.
Drug and alcohol interventions consist of a group of people who come together to confront their addicted loved ones and encourage them to seek help. These groups consist of close friends and family and involve intensive planning to ensure the success of the intervention.
Although interventions are never easy, they are a necessary step to helping an addicted loved one who has refused treatment in the past. Drug and alcohol addiction wreaks havoc on the mind and body, so many individuals don’t even realize they have a problem until their loved ones decide to intervene. Whether you’re already in the process of staging an intervention or are just beginning to explore your options, here is everything you need to know about addiction interventions.
What are Interventions?
Intervention is a word used to describe stepping into one’s life or behaviors in the hopes of changing their behaviors or the outcome of their current situations. Interventions may be held for a variety of reasons, ranging from addiction and mental illness to eating disorders and behavioral issues. In most cases, interventions will end by offering the afflicted individual an ultimatum that involves getting professional help.
Before an intervention, a group of concerned individuals will come together, preferably under the guidance of an intervention specialist. The group will work together to plan and prepare to confront their struggling loved one and try to persuade them to make significant changes in their life. In the case of addiction interventions, groups are working toward the goal of sending their loved one to a professional drug or alcohol rehab center.
How Addiction Interventions Work
Planning and preparation are the most important parts of an intervention. This is why groups should meet beforehand, with a professional, to discuss how the meeting will go and what everyone will say. In most cases, interventions are led by a professional who has experience dealing with addicts and their families. During the planning stage, the group will discuss with one another everything they know about their loved one’s drug or alcohol abuse.
Typically, members of the group are encouraged to make lists or write letters of everything they want to say. These letters will highlight how the person’s addiction has affected each member of the group on a personal level. They may also demonstrate the fear and worries experienced by the entire family. By preparing these statements beforehand, members of the group ensure that they are saying everything they need to say without leaving anything out.
Drug and alcohol interventions will conclude with outlined consequences as to what happens if the person continues to refuse professional help. The group should determine what these consequences will be before the intervention begins.
Generally, the idea is to confront an addicted loved one when they are both off-guard and relatively sober or coherent. This allows for more vulnerability and honesty on their part. Once the addict arrives as the designated location and every member of the group is present, the group will take turns reading their letters, expressing their thoughts, and setting healthy boundaries.
The Goal of Drug and Alcohol Interventions
Interventions work by demonstrating to a drug or alcohol user how their actions have affected the people who care about them. As members of the group take turns talking about specific ways in which their loved one’s substance abuse has hurt them, the addict may begin to understand the gravity of the situation. However, the success of an addiction intervention weighs heavily on the boundaries set forth by the family.
In the end, the goal of interventions is to motivate struggling individuals to seek treatment. Even though interventions don’t determine the outcome of treatment, they are an important first step to getting addicts and alcoholics into rehab.
If the individual does agree to go to rehab, it is vital that he or she goes right away. This is another reason why preparation is so important – the team should have a plan set in place of where to send their loved one and when they can arrive at the addiction treatment center. However, there is no guarantee that subjects of addiction interventions will agree to treatment. If the individual does not agree to go to rehab, he or she must be subject to the boundaries set forth during the intervention.
The Importance of Hiring an Intervention Specialist
Before you consider staging a drug and alcohol intervention, it is important to know the benefits of hiring a trained professional to guide you through the process. Intervention groups that have someone with experience are better equipped to handle these difficult confrontations. In addition, addiction specialists and counselors act as third-parties who are able to mitigate reactive or emotional situations.
Oftentimes, friends and family members don’t realize how emotional and stressful interventions are. However, denial is a huge aspect of addiction, and those suffering from addiction may become defensive, agitated, or upset when confronted about their substance abuse. On the other hand, the addict may begin minimizing their behaviors or making excuses in order to place themselves in the position of a victim. Victimization can affect family members and disrupt the overall goal of the intervention – sending the loved one to rehab. As a result, addiction interventions are most successful when guided by an intervention specialist.
Professional interventionists have experience working with addicts, alcoholics, and their family members, so they are prepared for the best and worst-case scenarios. In addition, they are familiar with the local recovery resources in the area, so they can refer family members, loved ones, and the addict to the resources they need. Even if people decide not to have a treatment professional present during the intervention process, they should at least seek guidance from one during the planning stage.
What do Drug and Alcohol Intervention Specialists Do?
Addiction intervention specialists are people who work with groups before, during, and after interventions. They are responsible for developing an actionable strategy for the group and helping improve the chances of a successful confrontation.
Interventionists usually have experience as counselors or therapists who deal with families of addicts, people suffering from alcoholism or addiction, or people with mental illness. Some specific things that professional interventionists due to aid in the intervention process include:
- Helping the group plan the intervention
- Teaching the group how to communicate effectively with the addict
- Educating the team about addiction, recovery, and other related topics
- Working with the group to arrange substance abuse treatment and aftercare programs
- Keeping the intervention moving and peaceful through mediation
Not only can drug and alcohol specialists help the intervention occur in a healthy way, but they are also trained to persuade people to seek help. As a result, hiring a professional interventionist is the best way to ensure the success of an addiction intervention.
Need To Stage an Intervention? We Can Help.
Drug and alcohol interventions can be highly successful if you follow a strict formula under the guidance of a professional. And, they are an integral aspect of getting your addicted loved one to see the severity of their substance abuse and associated actions. When you stage an intervention, you will be able to express to your loved one exactly why you are concerned and why they need to seek help.
If your loved one has yet to accept that they have a problem with drugs or alcohol, it may be time to hold an intervention. Don’t wait any longer. Take control by picking up the phone and contacting one of our dedicated addiction treatment providers today to get addiction help for your family.