What Is An Intervention?
An intervention is an organized attempt to confront the individual with addiction about their drinking, drug use, or addiction-related behavior. Generally, a family drug intervention is needed to address how the person’s addiction has affected everyone surrounding them.
An intervention provides family, friends, employers, and colleagues an opportunity to tell the individual in their own words how the person’s drug or alcohol use has been an issue. The family drug intervention is a planned, spontaneous event that addresses an individual’s substance abuse problem by focusing on destructive behaviors and negative effects.
In a family drug intervention, the following steps are recommended such as treatment, boundaries, and consequences if the plan presented isn’t followed. The planned attempt by the family and friends is used to persuade the addict to attend a treatment program.
One of the most important parts of a family drug intervention to remember is immediate results might not occur. Though it might seem irrational, it’s usually difficult for individuals struggling to be able to make a decision that is in their best interest.
Furthermore, addiction can wear an individual down. It’s not just about the person that is suffering but the entire family system is torn down. There are several different types of interventions.
How Do Interventions Work?
Interventions work through a professional and trained interventionist, the family and friends of an individual struggling with addiction, and the addict. Even though television shows typically showcase a family drug intervention as an ambush, it’s more of a loving invitation to change.
The advantage of an intervention is the family’s ability to learn more about the addiction.
Upon planning an intervention, it’s ideal to hire a trained and professional interventionist. A family drug intervention takes place in a controlled environment. Generally, it’s specifically selected to put the individual in more of a position where they are more prone to listen.
There are times when an intervention will come as a total surprise. There are newer techniques recommended that the members of the intervention team will tell the individual about it. During this discussion, the members of the intervention team will inform the individual about the drug and drinking use days before the actual intervention.
The intervention process might be led and guided by a skilled interventionist hired by the group. An interventionist should be a certified mental health professional with experience and training in addiction treatment. There are several examples of behavioral and substance addictions:
- Prescription drug misuse
- Compulsive gambling
- Compulsive eating
- Illicit drug use
- Alcohol use
How Does Addiction Affects Family Relationships?
Addiction affects the family relationship in several ways, including financially, emotionally, legally, and medically. For this specific reason, several treatment professionals engage in stress healing for the whole family unit.
It’s possible for children, spouses, and parents to all be impacted by the way that addiction affects the entire family. Peaceful and loving homes can end up being divided by the drug and alcohol abuse strain.
According to Psychology Today, about 1 in 5 children grow up in a home where the parent abused alcohol or drugs. When a child has to witness the parent struggling with addiction at a young age, there are long-term effects on the child.
Likewise, when a child grows up around a parent engaging in drugs or alcohol, they are more likely to develop a SUD. Furthermore, they are three times more likely to be neglected or sexually and/or physically abused.
When a child sees their parent on drugs, distressing emotions are often invoked. This creates development and learning delays but it can also lead to prolonged emotional and mental disorders.
Children might be exposed to violent and aggressive behavior due to a parent’s drinking. In addition to children, teenagers are exposed to parental substance abuse and are more likely to abuse substances in adulthood. When one member of the family is addicted, the entire family is negatively impacted.
Changing Family Dynamics: Everyone Plays a Role
It’s important that every family member examines their role in the family dysfunction and forge new relationships with the addicted loved one. It’s crucial for family members can take a look at how they engage with the person, through truth and boldness.
During this step, it’s vital to ask yourself if you’re paying the addicted individual’s bills, or if you’re overlooking any inappropriate behaviors. Furthermore, it’s important to ensure that walking on eggshells isn’t occurring.
During a family drug intervention, the strengths of every member will be discussed. Aside from that, family history will be touched because the role ancestors played in family dynamics is paramount. During the intervention, an experienced interventionist is trained to identify the nonverbal signs of every member.
A professional interventionist is also skilled in using specific techniques to calm an explosive meeting or overcome manipulation surrounding that. Everyone must be respectful during the intervention. Interventions can be life-changing, even if the addict refuses help.
What Is Family Therapy?
Family therapy focuses on the relationships surrounding the addict and the family members. The goal of family therapy is to bring clarity to all relationships. Furthermore, it aims to foster repair and closeness. Several family therapists believe that the problems exist between people, and not within them.
During family therapy, the therapist will explore with the family how substance use is embedded in interaction within the family dynamics. In addition, family therapists can provide education on substance abuse for the entire family. This assists with reducing any unhelpful behaviors and increasing any effective behaviors.
Family therapists assist with identifying new skills. From that step, they coach the family members in practicing new skills. Family therapists can also put substance abuse in a different context by addressing other challenges and highlighting resilience.
Intervention Tips for Families
Overcome Your Fear
A bold step might be needed to save lives and overcome addiction. Most often, family members struggle with the idea of if they do something differently, they will emotionally lose the person.
Enlist Professional and Moral Help
It’s ideal to not embark on this journey alone, but alongside a professional interventionist.
Take Time to Plan Carefully
This step is critical, especially since a poorly planned intervention rarely motivates a loved one to recover.
Be Prepared for Rejection and Anger
An intervention is known to release a roller coaster of emotions, as the addicted individual faces the family. Be prepared to detach with love, so you can avoid enabling addiction. Therefore, creating a healthier relationship with your loved one.
LUNA Can Help Through Family Intervention Services
Here at LUNA Recovery Services, we are a family-focused treatment center. We utilize a family-centric approach to dealing with addiction, such as family therapy. Intervention is a form of family support, and there is hope to strengthen family dynamics. Contact us.
Dr. Allaire received his Bachelors of Science in Biology from the University of Houston, as Valedictorian of the College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics, and his Medical Doctorate from Baylor College of Medicine, where he served as Chief Resident. He is the medical monitor for the Physician Counseling Committee of the Harris County Medical Society and the Medical Director of Serenity House Detox. Dr. Allaire specializes in medically assisted detox cases, treating patients in recovery from addiction or other mental health disorders, the medical assessment and monitoring of patients with addictive disorders, medical care related to eating disorders and the medical treatment of patients with mental health conditions.