When a family has done all they can to get through to a loved one who is addicted to drugs or alcohol, and are still unsuccessful, it may be time to consider an intervention. However, an intervention must be done the right way in order for it to be effective.

Purpose of an Intervention

Staging an intervention can be a way to reach someone who has given in to addiction. When drug or alcohol abuse takes over a person’s life and priorities, they don’t care about other things in their life. The addict might know that things aren’t good with their family, or that they aren’t being a good parent, or even that they have hurt people. But they may be oblivious to how devastating their addiction is to their lived ones. They may not know the extent of the damage caused or the severity of the pain that they have inflicted.

An intervention brings these feelings to light, and also helps the addict know that they are loved and have people who want them to get help. The purpose of an intervention is to help the addict see their life from a different perspective, and as a result to come to the realization that they do need help. When an intervention is done correctly, an alcoholic or drug addict will see how they’ve hurt loved ones, and be motivated to get sober.

Expressing Feelings the Wrong Way

However, an intervention must be done correctly, and it is often necessary to have a professional help organize and maybe even moderate it. There are many tv shows that demonstrate interventions that are not necessarily done right. Viewers see family members laying it all out on the table, confronting the family member that hurt them so badly. After all the drama, yelling, and crying, the addict agrees to go to treatment.

It might sound easy enough, and many people may feel like they can do an intervention on their own. But there is more to a successful intervention than getting a few things off your chest. If done incorrectly, an intervention can actually cause more harm than good. A family that is full of pain and dysfunction may have a hard time saying anything constructive and may only want to accuse the addict. An intervention gone wrong has the potential to create more divisions in the family, and cause the loved ones to not speak again. It also has the potential to make the addict more determined to not get help, which would certainly defeat the purpose.

Best Left to Professionals

Sometimes you only get one shot for an intervention, so it’s important to do it right. Some things are best left to the experts. A professional will be trained and experienced in the right way to go about an intervention. They will know how to direct the conversation to be productive. They will know what kinds of things will motivate an addict, as well as those that will cause them to shut down and turn down help.

The main goal for an intervention is not to make family members feel better, or to help them get back at the addict by saying hurtful things. The main goal should be to get help for the addict, so that the whole family can work on functioning again.

Sources

Intervention: Help a loved one overcome addiction

Intervention

Alcohol-Related Problems: Recognition and Intervention

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