Are you concerned about the health and safety of a loved one who is struggling with addiction? Do they refuse to seek help despite negative consequences? Watching your loved one struggle with addiction can be heartbreaking and overwhelming. If you do not know where to turn and want the best for your loved one, an intervention may be the answer.  

Question 1: Is it Time for an Intervention?

Recognizing the need for an intervention requires keen observation of your loved one’s behavior. You may ask what common signs are that it is time to seek help. Some signs that your loved one may need an intervention include:

  • Escalating substance use. If your loved one’s substance use has intensified, leading to negative consequences at work, home, or in relationships, an intervention may be necessary.
  • Denial and refusal to seek help. Persistent denial about the severity of their addiction and a refusal to seek help, even when faced with the consequences, are red flags.
  • Deteriorating health. Physical and mental health issues arising from substance abuse, such as weight loss, mood swings, or neglect of personal hygiene, may indicate the need for intervention.
  • Isolation. If your loved one is withdrawing from friends and family, avoiding social activities, and becoming increasingly isolated, it could be a sign that intervention is necessary.
  • Legal and financial problems. You may notice that your loved one is having issues with their finances or having legal problems related to their substance use. This is a sure sign that their addiction is escalating, and they need help.

Question 2: What are the Steps for an Intervention?

Not sure where to start? Conducting an intervention requires careful planning and consideration. The following steps can help you navigate this challenging process:

  • Educate yourself. Learn as much as possible about substance use disorders, available treatment options, and the intervention process. The more you understand the nature of addiction, the more empowered you will be to communicate effectively with your loved one during the intervention.
  • Assemble a support team. Do not try to do this alone. The intervention should be a group effort. Gather friends, family members, or professionals who are willing to participate in the intervention. A united front can convey a strong message of concern and support.
  • Consult a professional interventionist. Seeking guidance from a professional interventionist can give you valuable insights and increase the likelihood of a successful intervention. Professionals understand the challenges that can occur with an intervention and help you navigate this often difficult process.

Question 3: What Happens at an Intervention?

It is advised to be as prepared as possible. During an intervention, the group will:

  • Express concerns. Each participant involved in the intervention will have an opportunity to share specific instances of how the loved one’s addiction has affected them, emphasizing their love and concern. They can do this by reading a letter they wrote in advance or speaking about what they feel. 
  • Present treatment options. This may require planning. You will want to offer your loved one concrete and well-researched treatment options. Be prepared with information about recovery centers, therapy programs, and support groups.
  • Set clear boundaries. Clearly define the consequences if the loved one refuses help. This may include withdrawing financial support, limiting contact, or other actions.

Question 4: What if They Refuse Help?

Despite careful planning, there’s a possibility that your loved one may leave the intervention or refuse help when it is offered. In such cases:

  • Be prepared for resistance and understand that resistance is a common reaction. Stay calm, stick to the planned script, and emphasize your commitment to their well-being.
  • If your loved one leaves or refuses help, following through with the predefined consequences is crucial. Enforcing boundaries reinforces the seriousness of the situation.

Interventions are challenging but can be a crucial step in helping a loved one break free from the grip of addiction. 

At Mountain Laurel Recovery Center in Westfield, Pennsylvania, we offer a range of programs and services, including drug and alcohol intervention services, to help those struggling with a substance use disorder.  We have an intervention specialist available to assist the family in navigating the intervention process and help the individual and their family with determining the best course of treatment possible. To learn more about how our intervention services can meet your needs, please reach out to us today.