Addiction can seem like a never ending cycle for everyone involved. Many people feel powerless as their loved one battles a condition that is so hard to understand. When a loved one is struggling with addiction, friends and family may find themselves searching for a solution for lasting recovery. While the idea of intervention can be intimidating for some, it has proven to be an effective first step in rehabilitation. There are many things to consider while planning an intervention for a loved one. In addition to effective planning, understanding and managing expectations with an intervention can help free your loved one from a the addiction cycle for good.
What Is An Intervention?
An intervention is a gathering of close friends and family, expressing concern and offering solutions for rehabilitation to someone struggling with addiction. For some, an intervention is the answer to an especially unpleasant event. This “rock bottom,” or lowest level, may motivate those struggling with addiction to finally get the help they need. While there are many different types of intervention, they are typically conducted with this formula in mind:
- Close family and friends are present to provide support and encouragement
- The setting is a relaxed, familiar atmosphere, often in-home
- Feelings are expressed through letters and sentiments, planned in advance
- Immediate change is requested, often leading to prompt admittance to a rehabilitation center
A professional mediator may be present for the intervention to aid in planning and execution. This person usually works closely with the rehabilitation facility and can answer any questions about the treatment plan. A mediator may be especially necessary if mental illness, violent tendencies, self-harm, or extreme behavior is a concern.
Tips For An Effective Intervention
Many methods and programs are available to choreograph an effective intervention. Some families reach out to the rehabilitation center in advance for advice and guidance. Effective communication is the key to successful intervention. While conducting an intervention, it is important to keep a positive attitude about recovery. A few additional guidelines to ensure a successful intervention include:
- Plan in advance; gather close friends and family who wish to help
- Research the facility in advance and allow questions about the next steps
- Highlight the benefits of recovery, such as returning to hobbies and interests your loved one once enjoyed
- Resolve to help with recovery through support and encouragement
- Allow your loved one to talk and react
- If ultimatums must be made, stick to your commitments; avoid negotiations, and follow through
- Acknowledge hesitation and counter with encouragement
- Identify addiction as the enemy
- State the ways that addiction has affected you and your family
- If you’re concerned that another family member’s attitude will agitate the situation, remove that person from the intervention
- Ensure that everyone is on the same page and prepare for any possible reaction
Many families and friends fear for the health and safety of a loved one with addiction. This may possibly lead to hurt feelings or finger pointing. While accountability is important in recovery, it is not important for your loved one to apologize for their behavior during an intervention. At this stage, it is far more important to understand why rehabilitation is the right choice for them.
Success Of Intervention
Many families and friends are pleasantly surprised when a family member pursues rehabilitation after intervention. When addiction takes hold of a loved one, it often induces a feeling of helplessness. An intervention provides a lifeline and can drastically change the outlook of someone in need. The success rates of intervention are high and worth pursuing when a change is necessary:
- Around 80 percent of interventions are successful, in that the loved one has agreed to follow through with rehabilitation within 24 hours
- Of the 20 percent remaining, half choose to seek rehabilitation within one week
- If the intervention is not successful, family and friends are expected to follow through with clearly stated consequences and healthy boundaries to motivate change
Ideally, a full recovery will result from intervention. In the event that relapse occurs, family and friends may need to follow up and ensure that their loved one is on the right track. Rehabilitation is a long road. With the support of friends and family, those struggling with addiction are far more likely to succeed.
Intervention: An Act Of Love
It is a powerful event when a family collaborates to fight on behalf of a loved one. A dedicated support system, proper planning, and positive execution can make all of the difference in the outcome of an intervention. It’s important to remember that no one is ever “too far gone” for rehabilitation. If there is a desire to change, there is a fighting chance for recovery, and an intervention may be the first step for your loved one.
We’re Here To Help
If you or someone you know is interested in planning an intervention for a loved one, the caring staff at TurningPointTreatment.org is here to assist you. We can help find resources, provide guidance, and answer any questions you may have about the intervention process. Contact us today.