Family members and friends of a loved one who has a problem with addiction know all too well that the addict is not the only one suffering. Often times, the ones closest to the addict feel the same, if not more, amount of pain and anxiety than the addict themselves. The weight of worry and anger that is associated with watching someone you know slowly kill himself or herself with a substance is unbearable and feels like it falls on your shoulders, as well. In order to start the process of getting them the help they need, family and friends will need to education themselves with how to stage an intervention.
What Exactly is an Intervention and Why is it Necessary?
An intervention is a planned-out event designed to encourage a person with an addiction disorder to get the help they need and to agree to start their recovery. Family, friends and mentors closest to the addict are usually the ones who attend the intervention and who give statements on their concern for the individual’s wellbeing. Rather than point fingers and blame the individual of what they have done to create tension within the relationships of the people present, it is instead generally focused on the positives of getting help.
People with addiction disorders get to the point where they have either been on the brink of death before or are currently on the way to it. Interventions are often times the saving grace of someone who is struggling with addiction because they can feel alone and misunderstood, which makes their addiction even worse. An intervention can show them that there are people willing to stand by them while they get the help they ultimately need to save their life.
Planning the Intervention
Staging a successful intervention is all about planning, planning, planning. The time, location and every person necessary to the intervention available need to be thought out accordingly. The way your intervention will make an impact on the person affected by the addiction is by planning it down to the very detail and making sure everyone is available and on time before the addict arrives to wherever the intervention is taking place.
A vital aspect of the intervention is gathering information on the substance being abused. This will give examples to the addict and show what will happen to their life if they continue to go down the path they are headed. You could even have someone who was affected by addiction and has overcome it speak to them during the intervention to show them it is possible to succeed in the recovery process.
Another important part of the intervention is using impact statements. These statements will help the addict understand how serious you are about getting them help as well as how much their addiction has hindered their relationships with the people sitting in the room. It will show the addict that they will not be alone in fighting their addiction and also encourage the them to seek help instead of having the potential risk of losing that support of their loved ones.
Key Factors of Staging a Successful Intervention
- Make sure everyone who is going to be in attendance knows how important it is to show up at the right time and place. This will insure the intervention goes smoothly.
- Practice. Be sure to practice what you’re going to say and how you’re going to say it before the date of the intervention. It will help you to remember the key parts of your statements so that nothing important is left out.
- Offer help. The loved one should know that you are not going to leave them high and dry just because they have an addiction. They need to understand you are willing to do what it takes to get them the help they need if they agree upon it.
- Give consequences. A major key to making your loved one understand you’re serious is to make them aware of what they will lose if they continue using. This could be taking away custody of children, kicking them out of the house or ceasing to financially support them.
- Follow up. The most important step, whether the loved one has accepted the help or not, is to follow up on your statements talked about in the intervention. If they agree upon the help, then your job is to make sure they get it. If they did not, your job is to make sure the consequences set are being upheld.
What to Avoid in an Intervention
We have provided a list of helpful steps to stage an intervention, but there are also things you should be aware of to avoid. Some of these include:
- Words like “alcoholic” and “addict”. These words can stray your loved one away from listening to what you have to say because of the negative connotation associated with these words. They make them feel as though you’re accusing them rather than trying to help them.
- Intoxication. If the subject of the intervention is intoxicated while attending their intervention, they most likely will not absorb what is going on around them.
- Too many attendants. It is important to weed out the individuals who will most likely have an impact on changing the person with the addiction’s mind. Too many people present will make it overwhelming for the subject.
- Overly emotional attendants. The best way to make an impact is by having everyone make a calm and collected statement about their feelings towards the subject and their addiction.
If you believe that your loved one needs help, reach out to us today: (855) 625-6684