A lot of people face this issue: you or a loved one get to the point where it’s obvious that professional help is needed for drug or alcohol addiction, but worry about the consequences of an intervention. It can be difficult – few people thrive on confrontation – but it’s important to understand that the point of an intervention is not to gang up on someone.
When done correctly, an intervention is the opportunity to express your love and concern for your loved one and, hopefully, stop them from further self-harm. The end goal is to get them to agree to go into an alcohol or drug addiction treatment program.
It Starts with an Agreement
An abuser’s best chance for recovery includes the support of the family and loved ones. Many times, this begins with an intervention, which is also an agreement among friends and family members to cease all enabling behaviors that are bringing harm to the person they love. Saying no and establishing consequences for the abuser’s intolerable behavior is not an act of unkindness. It is, in fact, an act of love.
You must come to terms with the fact that you can no longer hold onto false hope, often fueled by the abuser’s promises that the next job, relationship or new medication will help stop the addiction on its own. To delay an intervention and continue to enable the abuser only allows the substance to do more harm to your loved one’s body.
How to Get Started, and How Enterhealth Can Help
When families reach out to Enterhealth – a drug and alcohol addiction treatment company – our experts first counsel the family on the importance of having a loving mindset and understanding that addiction is a disease, after which we review the ingredients of a successful intervention.
Our recommendations for a successful intervention:
- Understand that addiction is not a character or moral flaw, but that the substance abuser’s brain is physically injured from their alcohol or drug abuse.
- A successful intervention must be carefully planned to work as intended. A poorly planned intervention can worsen the situation, as your loved one may feel attacked and become isolated or, even, become more resistant to treatment.
- Use an addiction intervention specialist and follow the plan without allowing the abuser to take control of the meeting. When the potential patient arrives to the intervention location, the intervention specialist will take control and make a formal introduction, inviting the patient to listen to the help that’s being offered.
- Tell the abuser how you feel and declare your love. During an intervention, family members often express their love and support by reading handwritten letters out loud to the addict.
- Letters should conclude with expressions of hope the abuser will accept the treatment that’s being offered.
- It’s equally important that the family sticks to the agreed consequences – whatever those may be – if the abuser chooses not to accept treatment.
- If at any time during the intervention the addict agrees to go to treatment, a family member should have the addict’s bag packed and ready to go. The intervention specialist can immediately escort the addict to treatment.
It’s important to understand that before confronting someone in an intervention, you must select a treatment provider that gives him or her the best chance to recover. At Enterhealth Ranch and Enterhealth Outpatient Center of Excellence, our science-based treatment is three times more effective than traditional 12-step programs.
We treat alcohol and drug addiction as a medical condition – specifically, as a chronic brain disease – beginning with a complete medical and psychological assessment. Through these assessments, we are able to identify areas of the brain that have sustained injury due to alcohol and drug addiction. We also provide intervention moderation at no charge.
It’s important to keep in mind that an intervention is just the first step in what should be an ongoing treatment and recovery process that involves the entire family.