Many family members living with a loved one in the throes of a devastating addiction will want to do everything in their power to help. It can be difficult to watch someone you love struggling every day with the weight of an addiction problem and feeling powerless to act.
You cannot force a loved one to get help, no matter how hard you try. Moreover, you cannot cure their addiction either. It is an illness that will not go away simply because you want it to. However, there are ways that family members can help their loved one face up to the severity of his or her situation; one of the most effective is to stage an intervention.
It is important to realise, however, that an intervention will only be effective if it is done correctly. There are certain tips you should follow when staging an intervention and these are vital to ensuring the outcome is the one you want.
Consider Professional Help
The aim of an intervention is to assist your loved one break away from his or her addiction, and, to this end, an intervention can be a very powerful tool. Nevertheless, if you have no experience or interventions, this can be a disaster. It is a good idea to think about how a professional interventionist could help.
A professional will have experience in the right way to stage an intervention, and you are more likely to see a positive result this way. Many family members will try to go it alone but, as mentioned, this can have disastrous consequences, especially if the addicted person feels as though they are under attack. This can make them defensive and unwilling to get help. A professional interventionist will know how to handle any situation and will be able to steer the intervention back to the right path, if necessary.
Make a Plan
Before the actual intervention takes place, it is a good idea to plan how it will be held; in many instances, it is beneficial to rehearse it. This way, everyone knows what is expected of him or her, and he or she will be prepared for anything that happens during the actual event. A rehearsal is a good way to ensure that everyone is relaxed and comfortable when the real intervention takes place.
Your addicted loved one is very likely to feel under attack during the intervention, especially in the beginning. They might become defensive and may not want to listen to what you are saying. If this happens, it can be very tempting to get angry with him or her, but this is counterproductive. You do need to present your loved one with ultimatums but you have to remain calm at all times. This is one of the main reasons for having a counsellor or professional interventionist present during the event.
Make Sure Any Threats You Make are Real
Ultimatums can be a motivational force for making an addicted loved one face up to his or her problems and accept help. Nonetheless, these will only work if you are prepared to follow through with them. If your loved one believes that you would never go through with your threats, he or she will call your bluff, which could destabilise the entire intervention. You need to be prepared to do exactly what you have said you will do or you could just reinforce their addictive behaviour.
Make Sure You Have Researched Treatment Options
The intervention is the perfect time to get a loved one to accept help, so it is vital that you have plans in place should they be prepared to accept help – otherwise, the affected person could lose any motivation they had. Addiction Helper is the perfect place to find out about treatment options available and our team of expert advisors are on hand to help you with this. Call today for more information.