What is an Intervention?
Many people have heard of a drug or alcohol intervention, or perhaps seen the popular television show. However, when it comes to actually staging an intervention for a loved one, the process can be overwhelming and confusing. With all of the information out there, the media portrayal of addiction and interventions, and our own personal situations, it can be hard to know where to start or what to expect. So, what is an intervention? Let’s dive in by looking at who might benefit from an intervention.
If somebody you know is struggling with addiction and you’d like to learn more about interventions, you can learn more about our Drug Intervention Services at https://thevitalitygroup.net/drug-intervention/.
Who Benefits from an Intervention?
Interventions are simply not for everyone. If you have a loved one in your life who is struggling with addiction and is willing to seek help, an intervention is likely not necessary. Interventions are for those who are in denial or unwilling to seek help for their problem. If you see somebody in your life who is exhibiting signs and symptoms of addiction, but has not displayed interest in making a change, they may be a strong candidate for a drug intervention. According to Psychology Today, interventions do increase the likelihood that an individual seeks treatment. The research is only beginning on addiction and interventions, but we do have evidence to suggest they can help somebody actually take steps toward recovery.
It’s important to understand that an intervention isn’t only for the addict. The family and loved ones also benefit from an intervention. During the process, the hope is that the loved ones can have their voices heard, set boundaries, and find some more peace with the difficult situation. A trained interventionist will work with the family, as this is a crucial part of the process. At the end, the family and loved ones will have some tools and understanding to help carry them forward with the process of recovery.
How to Stage an Intervention
First, it is important to hire a trained and professional interventionist for the process. Although an intervention may seem simple on the surface, staging one without the help of a clinician may cause more harm than good. Generally speaking, an interventionist can help everyone involved feel safe. The interventionist will discuss the situation with loved ones, come up with a plan, and use their expertise to construct an intervention that is useful to the struggling addict.
Interventions usually begin with some time spent with the loved ones and family. If you don’t know who to include in your intervention, you can speak with an interventionist for some guidance. When the interventionist begins working with the loved ones, they will first seek to understand the specifics of the situation. Using their training and understanding, they will help you all come up with a plan of action. Family members will learn what to say and how to set boundaries, and likely rehearse the process. The interventionist may even stage a mock intervention to prepare you for the process. This can include what to do if things head south during the process.
During the actual intervention, the interventionist will guide the conversation and help keep the structure. It’s important that the loved ones stick to the script, which can be hard when the addict is present. After the interventionist introduces why everyone is present, individuals may take turns sharing their experience of the addiction and setting some boundaries. The point here is to be supportive, and to let the struggling addict know that they cannot continue to support the addictive behavior. The interventionist may hop in and change the tone if it becomes harsh or less supportive than they would like to see. At the end of the intervention, the person is offered an opportunity to seek help that has been all planned out ahead of time.
What Happens After an Intervention?
When the intervention is completed, the plan of action for seeking help will be presented. As there are many different routes to recovery and alternatives to AA, the interventionist will try to offer a plan that is most helpful for the invididual situation. This may include detoxification, inpatient treatment, and/or outpatient treatment. Usually, the interventionist and family has this set up ahead of time. This way, if the person is willing to get help, they can be on their way without a waiting period.
The family may also need some guidance and support after the intervention. Many people choose to participate in family recovery coaching, the process of working with a coach to help those who have a loved one struggling with addiction. With the help of a family coach, the members of the intervention can learn to continue setting healthy boundaries, support their family member, and gain an understanding in their own lives.