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Professional Interventions For Families Who Need A Loved One In Rehab

Dr. Gerardo Sison

Medically reviewed by

Dr. Gerardo Sison

March 29, 2019

If a loved one is suffering from addiction, it can be easy to feel despair at ever finding them help. A professional intervention allows individuals to confront their loved ones about getting them the treatment they need with the help of an experienced interventionalist.

Planning an intervention will primarily be the responsibility of you and other people who are affected by the addiction. After all, interventions are highly personal situations and can feel emotionally traumatic. Thankfully, however, there are drug and alcohol rehab centers across the country that are willing to help you in your time of need.

What Are Interventions?

Interventions are meetings with an unnotified loved one during which you and other loved ones draw a line in the sand: you put your addicted loved one in a spot where he or she must choose to get help for the addiction or face predetermined consequences. They are designed to make your loved one understand how seriously their behavior has affected themselves and the ones around them and to help them come to grips with it.

One thing that an intervention is not is a screaming match. Standing up and accusing your loved one of terrible things in an angry tone is not the way to get results. Interventions, as painful as they are for both sides, are supposed to be loving and caring situations. Nobody should walk away from an intervention feeling bad about themselves.

The Steps Of An Intervention

Preparing for and executing an intervention is a difficult process. You may feel lost and confused trying to do it on your own. However, as a guide, use the steps that The Mayo Clinic defines as being the major process of an intervention:

  1. Planning the intervention – Here, you and family members create a group that helps plan the intervention, including the form it will take and when it will take place. Include loved ones, such as family members and friends, and, if necessary, psychologists and social workers to help give you a scientific backing for the process.
  2. Doing research – After gathering together your group, you need to research available treatment options that you think will help your loved one. You also need to discover how far their addiction has impacted their life, including money problems, legal concerns, and personality conflicts.
  3. Creating a list of consequences – Every successful intervention requires consequences, should your loved one not agree to get help. These consequences should be difficult, such as losing contact with children or being taken out of a will. This will be a very difficult step for any intervention group to take, but it must be done.
  4. Plan the intervention in advance – Don’t go into an intervention flying by the seat of your pants. Instead, create a script of talking points (such as the way their addiction has changed them) and how it has affected you emotionally. If everyone has unique things to say, the evidence will be staggering for most people to confront.
  5. Executing the intervention – Now comes the hardest part: staging the intervention. Your loved one has no idea it is happening and may feel shocked and upset. However, it must be done. You’ve planned it well and you know what to say, so present them with your case and await their response.

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Why Interventions Work

The difficult process of setting up an intervention can make it seem like too much of a problem. However, studies have shown that interventions are 90 percent successful on the day of the intervention. This means that 9 out of every 10 people confronted in an intervention begin treatment the day of the intervention. Why is the success rate of interventions so astonishing?

A successfully implemented intervention often shocks a person into accepting the brutal truth of their addiction. Too often, it’s easy for them to ignore the signs and symptoms of addiction or the right of family members and friends who want to help.

When they are confronted by people they love expressing their concern, detailing the problems that their addiction has caused, and confronted with negative consequences, they will truly understand the seriousness of their addiction. It will often shock them into reality and force them to get the help they need.

Pitfalls That Plague Many Interventions

Perhaps you’ve tried an intervention in the past and it was unsuccessful or maybe you are concerned about doing something the wrong way. In either instance, it is important for you to understand the pitfalls that often cause failure in interventions. These common behaviors doom your intervention and make success nearly impossible.

So, when you’re holding an intervention, make sure that you don’t:

  • Wait too long – The old cliché states that interventions are necessary only when a person “bottoms out,” but waiting that long can seriously affect their physical and emotional health. Do an intervention as soon as possible.
  • Attack your loved one with personal threats – Remember: an intervention is a situation born out of love. Telling them “you ruined my life” is the wrong approach. Instead, take an approach centered on “I”. Calmly tell them how you feel, using language like “I felt very upset when you stayed home to do drugs instead of go on vacation with us.”
  • Go back on your consequences – Yes, it will be hard to cut someone out of your life, but failure to live up to your stated consequences will only enable your loved one to continue their behavior.
  • Let your loved one wiggle out of making a choice – In sympathy and love, you might be willing to let your loved one stall on making a decision right then and now. Don’t let them. Your addicted loved one needs to make the decision right then, or he will try to find excuses for getting out of it.
  • Do it alone – While it’s noble to want to solve your problems with a family-centric intervention, it is easy for an unaided intervention to get out of control. Emotions will be strong and many often turn into shouting matches. Avoid that problem by hiring an interventionist.

Why You Should Hire A Professional Interventionist

People hire a professional interventionist when they feel like they need help with their intervention or are worried about keeping it under control. Interventionists serve as a non-emotional, but caring, mediator that can keep things moving on the right track and stop disagreements from turning into a major turmoil on both sides.

A professional interventionist can help with every step of the process, including making a detailed plan, choosing the people to include in the group, executing the intervention, mediating between the person suffering from addiction and their loved ones, and even contact available rehab centers that can help. In fact, many drug and alcohol rehab centers utilize professional interventionists in their treatment plans.

Getting Help Today

So if you’re looking to help a loved one overcome their addiction through a professional intervention, make sure to check our resources. Below you can find an interventionist near you that will help you get your loved one’s life back on track. Don’t be afraid to make that crucial decision: it is often life-saving. Reach out to today for more information on interventions or for help getting your loved one into the best treatment for their needs.

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