If someone you love is battling an addiction to drugs or alcohol, you have seen firsthand how this addiction affects them and those around them. Understandably, you want to do everything you can to help.
You have heard that an intervention can help those battling substance use disorder to realize they have a problem and need help. It is also a time for friends and family to show support.
The interventions you have likely seen on television or in the movies are a fictional depiction of what an intervention is and how they are conducted. In the real world interventions are an avenue to help a person struggling with addiction to receive encouragement and incentivize them to make changes. More is involved in an intervention than just doing a family meeting.
What Happens during an Intervention?
Interventions must be planned. Family and friends must plan where they will meet, what each person will say, and when the intervention will occur. When interventions are hastily thrown together spontaneously, things go wrong.
Planning helps avoid confusion and helps everyone involved in the intervention to stay on topic. An intervention is not about making accusations, placing blame, or venting hurt. These things can make the person you are trying to help refuse your assistance. It puts them on the defensive, which is precisely what you do not want to have happen.
Interventions focus on positive things. You want to help your loved one struggling with addiction to understand how their addiction is emotionally, mentally, and physically impacting their loved ones. Still, this information needs to be transmitted without blaming the individual for causing harm.
The goal of the intervention is to highlight the negative changes in behavior caused by addiction. You want to point your loved one to the solution, which is detox and rehabilitation.
If you are looking to stage an intervention, you can plan it yourself or work with a professional. The goal is to have a structured planning process and select an individual who will lead the event.
How to Plan an Intervention
The first step in planning an intervention is to talk with someone who has experience. Professionals who you could talk to include:
• Social workers
• Professional interventionalists
• Other mental health professionals
Include friends and family in the planning phase. You mustn’t try to handle everything on your own.
Create the Intervention Team
This is the core group of people who will organize the intervention. Usually, an intervention is limited to close friends, family members, and coworkers. If other friends and family members are also struggling with substance abuse issues, don’t include them in the intervention.
Put a Plan Together
Choose the intervention’s day, time, location, and guest list. Build an outline of how the intervention will play out, including what each person will say. Stick to this outline, and let it guide the event.
Collect Needed Information
All involved should be informed about addiction, substance abuse, and recovery. Familiarize yourself with the rehabilitation and detox programs in your area, especially those you feel are right for the needs and personality of the person battling addiction.
Draft Impact Statements
You don’t want your intervention to be rambling. Everyone present should have something to add about how they have been impacted by your loved one’s struggles with addiction. These should be personal statements that help your loved one see their addiction is hurting others. The focus of the statements should be love. However, they need to be honest.
Offer to Provide Assistance
Everyone who attends the intervention should offer some support to help the individual as they go through the detox and recovery process. If the person flat out refuses to get treatment, boundaries must be set. Changes in family and friend relationships must be enacted.
Once all the pieces are in place, everyone should rehearse what they will say. All members involved should help each other stay on topic, avoid blaming the loved one, and avoid turning the intervention into a session for expressing grievances.
Stay Hopeful, but Be Realistic
On television and in the movies, interventions inevitably end with the loved one accepting help. However, the reality is that even a well-planned intervention may not have the desired results. Be positive, but also be realistic. Whether the person accepts help or not, stay true to the statements made during the intervention.
Are you or a loved one battling with substance abuse? Are you ready to get help? We are here for you. Call us today at 833-497-3812.