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How to Stage an Alcohol Intervention



Many family members and friends who know a loved one is struggling with addiction oftentimes sit back and wait for the person to ask for help. This, however, can lead to a much worse addiction.

Instead of being afraid that the addict will become confrontational, or won’t listen, it is time to step in and do something.

The sooner you do, the more likely it is that you are going to make an impact and help the individual.

Many addicts are going to push you away during an intervention. They’ll say they don’t need help, they aren’t addicted, or that you’re reading into things incorrectly.

You have to be strong as a team when intervening, and you have to push back. You want to help, and the only way you can do so is by stepping up and making sure the addict is listening and knows you are aware of what’s been going on.

Assembly: Step One

First thing’s first, you have to assemble a team. You can’t go in one-on-one and try to change a person’s mind. You want to put together a group of people who are aware of the addictive behaviour. You can bring together

  • Spouse
  • Friends
  • Relatives
  • Co-workers/bosses
  • Kids (age dependent/how much they know, etc.)

The more people you have who are there to support and who are there to show the addict that they want them to get the help they need, the more likely it is that this might alter their way of thinking and get them to listen up.

With a team in place, you have to make sure you have the proper script in place. You want to stick to the script. You can’t go back and forth if the addict says one thing or another.

You need to stick to your guns, know that they are going to be confrontational, and know they are going to fight you at all costs.

Many addicts will push you away and say they don’t have a problem; in fact, most will. It’s important that you run the course, don’t let them fight you, and make sure you say everything that has to be said.

The Intervention: Step Two

Now that you have the script and team in place, you need to make sure you are ready for the intervention. Know when the individual will be home.

Know what their tendencies are, how they are going to try to fight or run from the situation, and make sure you remain strong with your team in place.

By going in as a group, and by knowing what to expect, it is going to be much easier for you to stay the course and get through to the addict you are trying to help.

It’s important to keep emotions at bay. If the addict gets loud and argues, and you do the same, you are never going to get through to them. Remain level-headed. Make sure you remain firm and are stern, without sounding as though you are scolding the person.

It is important to plan, practice, and execute. The more time and effort you put into phase one, and to planning for the intervention, the easier it is going to go.

And, the more likely it is that you are going to have planned for every scenario which might unfold when you are sitting down and trying to get the person to listen to you.

Preparation is key; but, during execution, you have to remain stern and you have to make sure you don’t allow the addict to bully you or try to push you away, which they are more than likely going to attempt to do with you.

The Next Phase: Step Three

So, what’s next? You got the addict to sit down and listen. They know your points are valid and they are willing to work on their addiction. But, it can’t simply be about you accepting their acceptance. You have to follow through. You can’t leave their side.

What is the phase that they have to go through once they have agreed they do have an addiction and that they are going to need help? It’s important to find the right resources. When you are planning on the next phases, you’re going to want to

  • Contact rehab clinics and go into them
  • Learn about the tendencies, nature, and issues which led to addiction
  • Find out the type of drugs/alcohol the individual is addicted to
  • Figure out a plan of action, how soon to go into therapy, how to talk to the kids, and so forth
  • Physically go into a rehab centre, learn about their programmes, and find out what kind of approach they are going to take with the addict, to get them the help they need

Rehab is Crucial to Success

More often than not, once an individual succumbs and admits they need help, they are more willing to go into a rehab centre. This is important, not only in that they know they can’t do it on their own, but also in the fact that they actually want to get help.

This means that you, as an intervention team, got through to them, and you did what you had to do in order to get them the help they need, in order to live a drug-free life and get clean.

Intervention is tough for the addict, but it is just as tough for family and friends who are staging it. Therefore, the more you prepare, the easier it is going to be to get through to the person, and the easier it is going to be for you to execute it.

Don’t back down, and don’t let the addict push you away… they are going to try.

You have to be strong, you have to make sure you have a clear goal in mind, and when you do, make sure you have the right team in place to stage the intervention when drug addiction has gotten to be a concern.

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