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Staging an Intervention for an Addicted Loved One

Staging an Intervention

It’s hard to know how to help someone you love overcome addiction. You may not understand why or how they became addicted to drugs or alcohol, but it’s important to understand that quitting is extremely difficult. Researchers have found that addiction can change the brain, meaning it will take more than good intentions and a strong will to give these substances up. Sometimes a heart-to-heart conversation could be what your loved one needs to begin the recovery process.

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An addiction intervention is simply a structured conversation between you and your loved one. Sometimes interventions include other friends and family members, called group interventions. Often, people enlist the help of a counselor, therapist or intervention specialist.

However the intervention is structured, the goal remains the same — to help your loved one struggling with addiction get help and seek some form of rehabilitation. If your loved one is deteriorating physically, mentally and emotionally, then it may be time to stage an intervention.

Below are some tips that can help you organize a successful intervention.

Woman comforting a man by touching his shoulder during a small group therapy session

It’s not always a good idea to confront an addict alone. You may want to consult with a professional well-versed in conducting interventions, such as a counselor, social worker or therapist. Having an intervention specialist present can help diffuse highly charged emotions both from the addicted loved one and those involved in the intervention.

Once you’ve consulted outside help, enlist the family members and friends who you feel should be a part of the intervention group. All members of the team should have a consistent message and may want to rehearse what they’re going to say ahead of time.

An intervention can quickly deteriorate into an emotional roller coaster if each member of the intervention group doesn’t stay constructive. You can express your feelings and concerns while remaining caring and not angry.

It’s crucial to have treatment options available to your loved one. In this way, they will be able to take immediate action after the intervention.

Along with the help and treatment they’ll need to seek recovery, you also should decide on specific consequences if your loved one does not get help. Each member of the group could choose something different, such as requiring your addicted loved one to move out. Everyone in the intervention group should be prepared to enforce these consequences if need be.

Appoint a point person, such as the addict’s spouse or parent, who will make sure they seek treatment. The point person could even offer to attend family therapy with them.

Does Your Loved One Need Help?

Because addiction can change your loved one’s brain chemistry, all they may be able to focus on and think of is the substance they’re addicted to. A successful intervention could be just the thing they need to help trigger a moment of clarity so they can realize how their actions have impacted those they love.

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The next step after a successful intervention is for your loved one to get the help they need. At Diamond House Detox, we provide detoxification programs as well as support and education to families with addicted loved ones. Contact us today if you would like help intervening.

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