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Six Things to Know When Planning an Intervention

Six Things to Know When Planning an Intervention

An intervention is a crucial moment in your loved one’s recovery journey

There are a lot of things to consider before holding an intervention for an addicted friend. Failing to keep things organized and under control can lead to ugly situations, and an effective intervention requires meticulous planning and rehearsal. Keep these six things in mind to avoid frustration and conflict when planning your loved one’s intervention.

You Do Not Have to Do This Alone

Planning an intervention is a massive undertaking, from deciding who should attend to planning how to confront the user and countless other tasks leading up to the intervention. Attempting to plan an intervention on your own causes unnecessary stress and you can stage a better intervention by involving others. Most importantly, a professional interventionist has the knowledge to assist you in planning and staging an effective intervention. An interventionist has staged numerous other successful interventions and has the experience to make the right decisions when you hold yours.

Not Everyone is as Prepared as You Are

You are researching interventions thoroughly, trying to come up with the best plan for your loved one but not everyone understands interventions or how they should behave during one. Before you hold your intervention you should brief everyone involved on what will occur during the intervention and how they should act. Talk about using positive language and being honest about addiction without creating conflict. Be sure everyone knows to limit speaking to one voice at a time in order to avoid confusion. Running through a rehearsal intervention leading up to the event will prepare everyone for the situation so they know what to expect.

What is Your Action Plan?

Having a written plan or agenda for the intervention is a good way to keep things on track and give the conversation direction. Come up with a speaking order and have everyone prepare statements about the addiction. Knowing what you are going to say and when will ease your mind on the day of the intervention so you can focus on helping your loved one instead of how to verbalize your emotions. Written statements also help interventions avoid having multiple speakers attempting to talk at once. If everyone sticks to their script it will prevent any unnecessary conflict with the user. If you notice anyone veering from their script or disrupting the agenda, you or the interventionist should steer things back to the main goal.

Know How to Handle the Addict’s Reaction

There is no telling how someone with addiction will react to an intervention so you need to be ready for anything and everything. Some users may curse at family members, walk out of the room, cry, make false accusations or get angry. Even the most calm people under normal conditions can react adversely when placed in a stressful situation such as an intervention. Plan specifically for reactions such as anger, crying, etc. so that you are ready to handle any sort of reaction your loved one may have.

What if Your Loved One Says No?

You probably already have a treatment plan in place if your loved one agrees to rehab, but what are you going to do if he says no? An intervention must include consequences. If nothing changes for the addict after a failed intervention, you are enabling the addict. After an intervention no one should do anything to support the user’s habit, meaning no financial support, free housing or other support that could finance a substance abuse habit. You must follow through with the consequences if the user refuses treatment; this does not mean you should give up, however, but instead continue encouraging him to get help.

Intervention is Only the Beginning

Getting someone to agree to rehab feels like victory, and it is — but it is only the beginning of the battle. Agreeing to rehab means your loved one wants help, but treatment often lasts several months and sobriety becomes more difficult once you leave the treatment center. Remember that your loved one will struggle with some aspects of addiction for years and he needs your help. Be there for him to talk to when he has cravings, ask him how you can help and do what you can to support your friend during recovery.

Are You Planning an Intervention?

If you need advice on what to do during an intervention or where your loved one can find addiction treatment, call our toll-free helpline today. Our trained addiction experts can give you more information on hiring an interventionist and will tell you more about the types of addiction treatment available. We are standing by 24 hours a day and can direct you to an effective treatment center. Many health insurance policies cover rehab so have your information on-hand to find out about your plan.