5 Ways A Professional Intervention Can Help Family Members Of An Addict

22 December 2015
 Categories: , Articles


One way to help a loved one suffering with addiction to realize their problems and begin to seek treatment is to organize a professional intervention. A professional intervention involves friends and family members coming together, led by an interventionist, to express their concern for a person in their life suffering from addiction. The main goal of most interventions is to convince an addict that they need help fighting their addiction by helping them recognize the negative affects their addiction has on their family. However, interventions are not just for a person suffering from addiction. There are many ways that a professional intervention can help the loved ones of a person suffering from addiction. 

Give Family Members Specific Knowledge About Addiction 

Interventionists are highly knowledgeable about addiction treatment methods and various aspects of addiction. They can help connect family members with resources to learn more about addiction recovery and can give suggestions for treatment centers and methods that may be helpful for specific situations. They may give a short lecture or lead a discussion about addiction to help family members understand addiction and their role in recovery. 

Create a Space For Friends and Family Members to Connect With One Another 

Before inviting a person suffering from addiction to an intervention, an interventionist will help identify key people in that person's life that can create a meaningful intervention. These people may include friends, family members, and coworkers. Usually, the interventionist will call these people together to connect and talk about their experiences before performing an intervention. This creates an intimate space for friends and family members to share their feelings and experiences and begin to bond and support each other. 

Help Family Members Connect With More Addiction Resources 

Although an intervention may end by connecting an addict with resources to help them recover from their addiction, it is also important that friends and family members receive adequate support throughout the process. Your interventionist may suggest counseling for you and will give you information about where and when support groups for friends and family of addicts meet. 

Give Family Members the Opportunity to Express Themselves 

Many loved ones can experience feelings of anger, helplessness, and frustration when they have someone suffering from addiction in their life. An intervention creates a safe space for loved ones to express their feelings to each other and to the person suffering from addiction. A professional interventionist can lead you through healthy forms of expression, such as utilizing "I" statements, that help bring a feeling of closure and satisfaction to your situation. 

Your interventionist may also suggest that you write a letter or record a video if you have a difficult time expressing yourself in person. 

Give Family Members Hope 

80% of addicts who go through a professional intervention enroll in treatment within 24 hours, and an additional 10% enroll in treatment for drug addiction within a week. This is a high success rate for interventions. This can give family members hope that their message has been heard and their loved one will change their behavior and enroll in a treatment program. Even if your loved one does not immediately enroll in a treatment program, having completed an intervention can lay the foundation to encourage them to seek help at a later point. It also lays out concrete ways for family members to help people suffering from addiction, which can feel empowering. 

While the main focus of interventions may be the person suffering from addiction, an intervention is also about bringing loved ones together and helping them support each other and express themselves. By setting up a professional intervention, you are helping an entire social network that has been negatively affected by addiction to heal and recover.