The Power of an Intervention
Interventions can honestly be the difference between life and death for a drug addict or an alcoholic. Not every person in need of rehab is going to initially jump at the chance to get clean and handle the issues that drove their addiction. While some addicts or alcoholics have been so badly beaten and battered by their lifestyle that they grasp at the first opportunity to deal with their problems, others need some type of external help in order to seek help. Interventions are extremely helpful tools for families who are dealing with a loved one who is completely against getting help and resistant to going to treatment.
Some families believe that if an addict or alcoholic isn’t willing to get help and go to drug rehab on their own, that they aren’t going to force them to go and certainly won’t waste their money, forcing to get them clean. Here’s an interesting fact: if some addicts or alcoholics believe that they can continue to drink alcohol or use drugs successfully, without any type of consequences for their behavior, they will continue to do so because the problems caused by their addiction is still less than the power of the addiction over them. Meanwhile, the rest of the family is worried sick at night, waiting for that dreaded phone call. If an addict or alcoholic absolutely refuses to go to drug treatment, don’t give up and certainly don’t take no for an answer. This is the exact situation when an intervention becomes a very good tool to save the person’s life.
Most people have a certain mental image when it comes to interventions, mostly influenced by what they’ve seen on television or in movies, and this is one main type of intervention. An addict or alcoholic is using, drinking, ruining their lives and refuses to get help. The family hires a professional interventionist who meets with the family and gets the whole story of what’s going on. The family gets the addict or alcoholic to come to an impromptu meeting where the interventionist, family and friends are waiting to confront them. The interventionist introduces themselves, has the addict sit down as family and friends take turns telling the addict how their addiction has affected their lives and again, ask the addict or alcoholic to seek help. The family has been coached by the interventionist to give the addict or alcoholic strict consequences that the family will follow through with if they still refuse to get help. These consequences can include cutting the addict or alcoholic off financially, not allowing them to live in the family’s home and cutting all ties, until they are ready to do something about their addiction.
A second type of intervention is done on a more one-on-one basis. Instead of conducting an intervention with the entire family, one can be done with the addict or alcoholic, working individually with the interventionist. The interventionist meets with the addict or alcoholic, alone, one-on-one, and works with them until they get their willingness to go to drug treatment and handle their issues. Like the first type of intervention, the family will give consequences for not getting help to make using or drinking harder, not easier, for the addict or alcoholic. Once the person agrees to finally go to treatment, the interventionist will escort them to the treatment center the family has picked out and set up before the intervention occurred and get them successfully enrolled and on the road to recovery.
Often interventionists can be more successful in handling the addict than the family since, in many cases, the interventionist is an ex-addict himself. By having gone through addiction, the interventionist can level with the addict, speak from their reality and truly understand and have empathy for what they are going through. The interventionist is also a neutral party and not heavily emotionally involved in the situation like the family is.
Interventions are powerful tools that can literally be the difference between a happy, productive life or a catastrophic death for an addict or alcoholic. Remember, not every person struggling with addiction is initially willing to face their demons and get help. While some addicts and alcoholics welcome addiction treatment with open arms, many need some persuasion and consequences before they realize they can’t continue their lifestyle. Don’t ever give up on someone who is resistant to getting help. Use the tools available to you to help the addict or alcoholic decide to change their lives. Use interventions and do whatever you can to help the person. Making an addict or alcoholic initially upset by intervening on them is much better than planning a funeral.