Staging an Intervention

How can you help a loved one face up to problem drinking or another addiction? One way is to use an Intervention.

What is an Intervention?

An intervention is one way that you can help your loved one make a decision to seek help in a drug or alcohol rehab in South Africa, the United Kingdom or Thailand. An intervention is a meeting of significant stakeholders (family, friends and possibly employers or business partners) who are concerned about somebody's drinking or other addiction.

The sole aim is to convince the addict or alcoholic that their addiction problem has reached a stage that in-patient treatment at an addictions centre is necessary, and agree to be admitted!

How Does an Intervention Work?

The family and friends should understand that this is not an opportunity to voice their anger and frustration with the alcoholics behaviour.

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This is a chance to constructively voice their  specific request for addictions treatment and what the consequences will be if the patient chooses to not go to rehab.

This is not the time or place to raise old hurts.

Interventions are widely regarded as being an effective means of persuading somebody to enter into a drug or alcohol rehabilitation (rehab) clinic.

In most cases, even if your addicted loved one refuses to enter a rehab clinic immediately, if the family hold firm to their boundaries and the previously decided upon stance (speak to about what will work for your situation) the patient will relent within days and agree to enter a clinic on the family's terms. 

What Will Happen in an Intervention?

Most of the time the addicted person will acknowledge their addiction and consent to treatment. Sometimes the addict will try to promise that he'll stop using and ask for 'just one more chance'.

If this happens remind the addict of the previous promises to stop and secure an agreement from the addict that another incidence of using will result in an admission to treatment or the consequences that people have agreed to take action on.

What Happens if the Intervention Does Not Result in Treatment?

A properly staged intervention cannot fail. If the intervention guidelines are followed they generallly have a very high success rate and the addicted person agrees to enter rehab, but even if the addict doesn't agree to treatment you have still accomplished numerous things.

Firstly, the addict will have heard there is a problem and may be able to acknowledge it at a later time, and secondly you as a group will have acknowledged the nature of the problem and what your bottom line expectations are.

Once these ground rules are established and everyone is more acutely aware of the addiction and the problems it's causing, family and friends are less likely to cover up and enable the addicted person. This in and of itself will bring about positive changes for the family system and move the addicted person more towards a place of accepting help.

Whatever happens you can rest assured that you have tried your very best to move things forward and help the addict find a suitable addiction treatment centre.

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