Anytime someone needs help but refuses to accept it, a family intervention is appropriate.  A family intervention can be used for people engaged in any self-destructive behavior and especially appropriate for addicts.

Intervention is the most loving, powerful and successful method yet for helping people accept help. A family intervention can be done with love and respect in a non-confrontational, non-judgmental manner. A family intervention is often the answer, the only answer. It can be done. It can be done now.

It certainly is not an easy decision to make when you are considering intervention for a loved one’s problems.  But if you are able to handle it in a loving, caring manner, you will be giving that loved one a gift that they will appreciate – eventually!

The first thing that needs to be done is that all family members and friends who might be able to make a difference must agree on a time and place to meet.  It’s a good idea to contact a professional counselor to help you.

You may initially be apprehensive and confused. Members participating in the intervention may be ambivalent about whether or not to actually do the intervention. Some may be afraid of the person, others may be angry. The goal is to move from this disorganized and chaotic state to a cohesive, focused group.

To do this, the participants meet with the leader beforehand to educate themselves about the dysfunction, to determine how to best help themselves, and to prepare for Intervention Day. This includes identifying others who should be involved , exploring appropriate treatment options, and preparing what they are going to say.

This preparation often involves several meetings, telephone calls, and culminates in a practice session immediately prior to the Intervention Day. The time varies, but the process is usually contained within one to two weeks. Sometimes it can be shortened to a weekend.

It is important for all of you to meet prior to Intervention Day so that you can discuss what steps will be taken and how you will be approaching the person you are trying to help.  Remember that you need to work together as a unit and decide what will be said beforehand.

You then need to get the person you want to help to actually show up.  This can be accomplished in many ways.  Use your imagination and say what you have to in order for the addicted person to arrive at the designated place.

There is no absolute right way to intervene in someone else's life. In fact, there is a school of thought that argues that any form of intervention is abhorrent, a violation of free speech and of an individual's right to choose. Nevertheless, as individuals and as a society we are always influencing others whether or not we want to, and sometimes we decide to intervene purposefully.

Intervention can be simple or it can be more involved.  The decision about what type of intervention to conduct must be up to all participating parties.

A simple intervention is exactly what it sounds like.  You simply ask the person you are intervening for to get help for their problem.  Believe it or not, sometimes this works incredibly well.  Often an addict is just waiting for someone else to acknowledge their problem before they do.  Once they know that everyone can see the problem, they are given permission to seek help with the support of their family and friends.

If a situation has reached dangerous proportions where a person’s life is in danger, a crisis intervention is necessary.  Crisis Interventions occur in dangerous situations involving reckless driving, weapons, hospital emergency rooms, or violence or threats of violence. It is obvious in these situations that a person is in immediate danger to himself or others.

The immediate objective in these cases is to calm the crisis and to create safety for all. Remember, a crisis often creates golden opportunities for family members to help someone accept help.

A classical intervention requires all attention to be focused on the addict.  Participants are often asked to talk with the addict and tell them what their addiction has done to them personally.  It’s very important to be brutally honest during these discussions.  Let it all go – this is the perfect opportunity.

Expect the addict to be defensive.  That’s normal.  They will probably deny that they even have a problem at all.  They’ll most likely yell and scream or try to get away.  The purpose of an intervention is to get everyone’s feelings out into the open, so the person you are trying to help should not be allowed to leave the room.  However, avoid violence.

Your ultimate goal with an intervention is to persuade your loved one to get help with his or her addiction.  If it’s bad enough to warrant an intervention, you will probably want to suggest an in-patient rehabilitation center.  At the very least, you should have the names and numbers of several different services they can turn to for help.

Be sure that your tone is sympathetic but helpful and that the person you are trying to help knows without a doubt that they have your support.  Intervention can be an effective tool in the process of recovery, but it must be handled in the right way which is why we strongly suggest the help of a professional.

There are certain things that can severely hinder the recovery process.

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We at Addiction Recovery Referrals know that it is very difficult to help a loved one with an addiction when he or she does not want help. Our staff is here to guide you through the difficult maze of recovery choices. These initial decisions are critical to your loved ones recovery as well as your family’s.