What Is An Intervention?

An intervention is a  technique used to encourage or direct an addict or alcoholic to agree to go to rehabilitation for his or her addiction problem. An intervention includes the addict/alcoholic along with any family members, friends, and or others concerned about this person. Friends and family typically agree to do an intervention because the addict/alcoholic is unresponsive to his or her pleas to seek help, unwilling to enter a treatment program, or is in denial regarding the problem. The interventionist works with the family to address their concerns surrounding  the addiction and the recovery process.

Family members are educated about enabling and second hand drinking and drugging (co-dependency).The most powerful tool the family has is leverage. Leverage is the power or ability to act or to influence people, events or decisions. Most families feel powerless over changing the addict and in fact they are. They do however have the power and ability to influence whether or not the addict makes the decision to get treatment and find recovery. Leverage is the single most unconditional loving way to provide the addict with what they need.

Typically the addict/alcoholic is not made aware of the intervention in advance. The interventionist works with the family around developing an effective “intervention team”. The objective of an intervention is to help the addict/alcoholic understand  the seriousness of the issue, maintain their dignity and facilitate them to get help.

What Happens After The Intervention?

When the addict enters the treatment program this is where recovery begins. Usually this process starts with a period of detox, and then there is movement into the educational phase where the individual learns about the recovery process and begins to change his or her attitudes, thoughts, and behaviors. Treatment is where the addict learns about the disease of addiction and is taught the skills to engage in the recovery process through changing thoughts, attitudes  and behaviors. The family also engages in a recovery process.

They often have felt responsible for meeting the needs of the addict at their own expense and often violated their own value systems in an effort to help the addict.  Many parents and spouses have felt like failures and have become isolated from others as a result of the addiction. The recovery process helps family members learn that they can live more meaningful lives and find happiness and freedom from the effects of addiction.