5 Essential Tips on Holding an Intervention

posted by Chris Valentine

Tips on Holding an Intervention

Many families stage a drug or alcohol intervention to help a loved one.

An intervention is emotional, scary, and exhausting. It uses peer pressure to encourage an addict to recognize there’s a problem. The goal is to convince the addict to get treatment.

Sometimes a family only has one chance at an effective intervention. A failed attempted can end in damaged relationships and estrangement.

While many interventions succeed, others fail. Keep reading for valuable tips on holding an intervention that works.

1. Make a Plan

Always plan ahead to increase positive outcomes. An intervention should never be spontaneous.

Prepare for the event by choosing the:

  • Date
  • Time
  • Location
  • Participants
  • Professional Interventionist

It’s a good idea to have a rehearsal before the intervention. Then everyone knows what to expect you avoid negative surprises.

Pick a neutral location that offers privacy and comfort. Choose a time with few distractions.

If your own home doesn’t feel safe, try a therapist’s office or a motel room.

2. Establish Clear Goals and Consequences

Show the addicted person their behavior affects others in a negative way. The goal is to seek treatment to change dangerous addiction behaviors.

Other goals may include family counseling or a 12-step program. 

Make sure the addict understands the consequences of rejecting treatment. If he or she refuses treatment, it could mean the loss of custody or marital separation.

3. Prepare for the Worst

Convincing a loved one to seek addiction treatment isn’t easy. It’s smart to hope for the best but prepare for the worst.

In the best case, your loved one arrives sober. He or she listens to family and friends, then agrees to choose treatment.

But, your loved one may arrive drunk or high. They may resent the intervention and become hostile, tearful or manipulative.

Be ready for verbal abuse and accusations. Expect the addict to deny the problem and refuse treatment.

Discuss effective responses with an intervention counselor ahead of time. It helps everyone work together. It also helps people remain calm and stay on topic. 

If physical violence is a concern, clear the room of anything dangerous. Be ready to call the police.

4. Stick to the Terms of the Plan

Write everything down so everyone knows the terms and conditions. It can be a formal contract if that helps people focus.

It won’t be easy, but success depends on sticking to the plan. You must be firm when the addict doesn’t meet goals.

This approach makes treatment the most rewarding choice for the addict.

Not holding the addict responsible defeats the purpose of the intervention. Instead of change, the addict returns to drugs or alcohol.

Stay strong on consequences if the addict won’t accept treatment.

5. Get Professional Tips for Holding an Intervention

An experienced counselor who understands addictive behaviors is an asset during an intervention. An outsider also brings neutrality and perspective to the situation.

A professional interventionist manages the event. He or she coaches you through the process. That means everyone else can focus on their personal contribution.

Help Your Loved One Begin Recovery

When you’re ready to help someone you love begin recovery, plan an intervention. Hire a professional to provide tips on holding an intervention.

Read more wellness articles at Odd Culture.

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