Interventions: How to Get Started
It is not easy to convince someone to enter rehab, no matter how close a person is to them. An intervention is often a last ditch attempt by an individual’s family and friends to get them into alcohol or drug abuse treatment. In these situations it is usually very obvious that the individual has an addiction, and that it is affecting their lives as well as the lives of people around them.
Goals of an Intervention
Before getting started on an intervention, it is important to know what the goals should be. An obvious goal is to make the individual with the addiction realize that they have a problem and that it is destructive not only for themselves but also for their loved ones.
One of the most important goals of an intervention is to get the individual to stop drinking or taking drugs, and this is the most difficult goal of all. It would usually require the individual to be convinced to go into an addiction treatment program. Naturally, one cannot force an the individual to go to treatment. In this case the family members and friends must be prepared to end their own enabling behavior toward the individual and stop inadvertently supporting the drug and alcohol abuse.
Steps of Staging an Intervention
Step 1- Finding an Intervention Specialist
The first step in staging an intervention is find and contact an intervention specialist. The specialist is a professional who will be present during the intervention and keep the communication moving between all the participants. It is not recommended that the loved ones confront the individual alone, as that could actually make matters worse. The individual could become stubborn and refuse to accept help. Having an intervention specialist on hand is key to staging a successful intervention.
Step 2 – Forming the Intervention Group
Once an intervention specialist has been selected and brought on board, they can help family and friends create an intervention strategy. There is no template for such a strategy, as all individuals are different with different needs. Therefore the specialist will work with the people who have approached them to address the individual’s particular needs. Part of this is picking the right people to be in the intervention group, like parents, spouses or partners, siblings, close friends or even colleagues. Elder grandparents or children could also be part of this group, but they must be prepared for some intense moments.
Step 3 – Learn and Rehearse
The participants will need to educate themselves on addiction and addiction recovery and will need to rehearse what they’re going to say to the individual, in order to convince them to get help. The intervention specialist can help with giving the right information and rehearse with them. Very often, the individual with an addiction is not aware of how their actions affect others, and their loved ones can be prepared with stories and examples of such incidents so that the individual understands how they have hurt the people close to them. But such stories need to be written in advance and reviewed before the intervention.
Step 4 – Choosing the Meeting Place and Time
This may not seem important, but it is. Generally, the space where the intervention will take place should be familiar and non threatening. This will put the individual at ease during the intervention. It is also important to schedule it during a time when the individual will be sober.
Step 5 – Be Prepared for Anything
It is impossible to predict or control how the individual will react when confronted. An intervention specialist will have professional experience in calming hostile environments. This is one more reason why the presence of the specialist is critical.
At Blueprints for Recovery we provide personalized support for young adults. Our staff can help resolve addictive behaviors and get you on the path to recovery and healing.