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How to do an Intervention

Sometimes, the family members, friends and loved ones of an addict need to intervene when someone who is abusing drugs can't stop their drug use on their own. There is an actual process to do so, called a drug intervention, which can help. A well though-out drug intervention is an opportunity to confront someone who has not helped themselves, to show them and prove to them that drugs can no longer be an option and that they must get help. An intervention will make them see how drugs have destroyed their hopes and dreams and important relationships, but that there is a way out of addiction if they accept treatment. The only end result that intervention participants are going for is the addicted individual in treatment. An intervention should not be used as a forum to vent anger and frustration at the addict, as this will surely backfire. It's a meeting that is meant to invoke positive change and is done out of love and compassion.

When setting out to do a drug intervention, it important that your intervention is set up for success. While it is possible to do an intervention on one's own, it is always recommended that you seek help from a professional interventionist who can be a mediator, and guide each individual through the correct intervention process to make it a success. The interventionist will also consult with family members and loved ones to get an idea of how bad the problem is and get a history of the addict's drug use, so that the appropriate drug rehab facility is chosen for treatment. A professional interventionist works with many drug rehabs and will have a good concept of where the individual should go to be treated, and already has the relationships in place to ensure the addict is well received when they do accept treatment. All arrangement should be made prior to the intervention itself, so that the addict can go straight from the intervention to the drug rehab facility of choice.

Once a time and place for the intervention has been chosen, which should be a distraction and stress free environment, the individuals who will be participating in the intervention will meet and ideally speak with a professional interventionist to decide how the intervention will take place. Intervention participants should be individuals who the addicted individual loves and respects and will actually listen to. The number of participants can range anywhere from 2 to 10 people. The important thing is that the addicted individual is confronted with as much truth as possible, so that they can see how addiction is affecting themselves and others. A drug intervention can include parents and family members, husbands/wives, friends, family friends, bosses and co-workers, physicians, counselors and religious advisors.

Once all intervention participants have become educated as to how the intervention will take place and what the goal is, they will be asked to prepare a letter that will be read at the intervention to the addict. The letters will help keep the intervention on track, and all participants focused on the goal of getting the individual in treatment. The letters don't need to be lengthy to be effective, and can be concise explanations of their relationship with the addict both before and after their drug use, and always ending with an offer of help at a drug rehab facility that has been chosen for them. Because any type of hostility and guilt directed towards the addict will give them all the more reason to immediately leave the intervention, and thus sabotaging all efforts, the letters should remain as positive as possible and focus on the ultimate goal. Reaffirming your love and stating that the intervention is being done out of concern for their wellbeing and future will go a long way with the addict.

Because getting the individual in treatment is the ultimate goal, each letter should end with an offer of help at a drug rehab. If the individual accepts, all involved will help get them out the door immediately and to rehab. It is vital that all intervention participants are prepared to handle any objections which may come up as an excuse to not immediately leave for treatment. As stated earlier, most real objections and logistics can be taken care of beforehand so that there is nothing in the way of them getting out the door. The interventionist can also assist in handling objections and escorting them to the drug rehab of choice to ensure they arrive safely.

Intervention participants should be prepared in the event that the addict does not accept help and won't leave for treatment right away. Because intervention participants can no longer let the addict's actions affect their lives, there must be consequences if they refuse the help offered at the intervention. If no consequences are enforced, the addict will just continue their behavior and will likely never seek the help they need. But if everyone comes together and enforces consequences which actually make an impact on the addict, they will not only be protecting themselves but also making it virtually impossible for the addict to continue their behavior. Hopefully, they will be left with no choice but to seek help. Examples of consequences which can be enforced immediately are complete cut off of financing of their habit, including housing, food, and clothing and of course any kind of monies that they are used to receiving which fund their addiction. Certain legal consequences can be put into action, including reporting them to their probation officer as needed or even contacting Child Protective Services if their children are in their care.

Most interventions work, and many thousands of individuals have gotten the help they need because someone who loved and cared about them was brave enough to orchestrate an intervention. If the intervention doesn't achieve the goal of the individual in treatment right away, it is possible that the individual will enter treatment as a result of the bottom lines that intervention participants will enforce. In the end, family members and loved ones will at the very least have communicated the truth and stopped any type of behavior which may have enabled the addict's drug use.