When someone struggles with addiction, it affects more than just that person. The family and friends of the addict are also effected emotionally, financially and even physically and can be unsure of how to help. It can be difficult to know what approach to take, especially if the person is reluctant to accept help or does not realize the extent to which their addiction affects them. One of the most effective ways to open a dialogue with the individual is with an intervention using family intervention services.
Tips for a Successful Intervention | Family Intervention Services
An intervention is a gathering of carefully selected individuals who meet to persuade a person to seek help for a problem. Interventions are primarily composed of friends and family members who are close to the individual. They are commonly used to address drug and alcohol abuse issues, serving as a structured method to share concerns with a loved one while guiding them towards treatment.
When done correctly, an intervention can avoid the negative—sometimes volatile—responses someone may have when confronted about such a sensitive topic and create a safe space to discuss options with a group of supportive people. The intervention may be the only shot you and your family have to get your loved one the help they need. This is why seeking family intervention services, help and guidance from professionals and even working with an interventionist for the planning of the intervention is incredibly worthwhile.
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- Consult with an Expert: Interventions can be difficult and it is imperative that they are well-planned in order to improve the likelihood of success. With the assistance of a professional interventionist, substance abuse counselor, or mental health professional, an intervention can be effectively organized. Enlisting the help of an expert provides an object third-party who can develop the best approach to an intervention based off the individual’s needs and the type of treatment or follow-up plan that is desired.
- Who to involve: The most important aspect of an intervention are the people involved. It is critical to keep the group relatively small and intimate, only inviting those who have a personal relationship with the individual. Those who are present should be able share personal stories about how the individual’s behavior has affected them and others. Attendees should not include people who enable negative behaviors or those that the person does not listen to or trust. It is also important to ensure that everyone present is mature enough to handle the situation and the potential outcomes. Children may be impacted by a person’s substance abuse and should be able to participate in an intervention, but only if they can handle the situation maturely with respect and empathy. If a child is too young or if there are concerns about how the intervention may impact them, consider having them write a letter.
- Preparing ahead of time: It is critical to be prepared for an intervention before it happens. Meeting and rehearsing ahead of time can help participants remain calm and keep the intervention on track. This allows everyone to share, receive feedback, and help one another remove any charged emotions that can interfere with the success of the intervention. It is best to have everyone write down what they want to say in order to help them remove negative emotions from the message they are conveying and ensure it is effective and meaningful. Before the intervention begins, establish a goal and determine the order in which people are going to. Someone should be designated as the leader of the intervention, an it is their responsibility to keep the goal in sight. If you enlist the help of an interventionist, that person can serve as the guide.
- Choosing a time and location: The intervention must be scheduled at a time when the person does not have other commitments. This will help minimize distractions and prevent them from having a way out. It is also important to consider the time of day. Depending on a person’s pattern of abuse, it may be best to have an intervention earlier in the day before they have had the chance to use. This will ensure they are more likely to be sober for the intervention. The location should be private, secure, and non-threatening. It is best not to hold interventions in public places to reduce distractions and to avoid making a scene. Choosing a location such as a home or office provides a neutral environment to discuss concerns. If possible, avoid holding the intervention in the individual’s home, as this can embolden them to abandon the intervention.
- Be aware of tone: The way people speak during an intervention can have a substantial impact on its outcome. It is critical for all participants to remain positive and supportive, avoiding confrontational or judgmental statements. Using positive language and focusing on a constructive tone will make the individual more likely to listen and respond.
- Focus on the outcome: Determine what the ideal outcome is and work towards making it happen. If the desired outcome is that the individual enter into treatment, it is important to have arrangements for that already in place. An intervention should end with an immediate decision made about whether or not the person will accept help. If everything is prearranged, it will be easier to help the individual transition into treatment following the intervention. Ensure that if the individual refuses treatment, they are aware of the consequences. Just as is the case with goals, it is important to establish consequences prior to the intervention as well.
Looking for information or help with an intervention?
An intervention is an important first step for many who struggle with addiction. However, it is important that there are plans in place if you loved one does or does not accept help. Sober College family intervention services assist families from beginning to end and ensure that you are your family are prepared for this important & difficult step in your loved one’s recovery.