Life with a drug addict or alcoholic is not easy. It is not as simple as “the drugs are the problem and quitting is the solution.” Each family situation and dynamic is different, and addiction is a complex disease. A major stumbling block that many families encounter when speaking with various intervention providers is that the goals of the intervention seem to be either black or white. The reality is that, just like addiction itself, interventions–and their related services and options–come in many shades of gray.
Answers to questions or plans set forth didn’t have structure. The goals were too vague. “We’ll handle it when we get there,” Or they were too simplistic: “We’ll get them into rehab and then they’ll go to meetings like we do every day and have a great life.” It seems like everyone that a concerned family member contacts acts as if there is a “one size fits all” approach to intervention and their family’s problems.
But, of course, that isn’t true at all. Intervention needs are as varied as the people and families who need them. Intervention services should be, as well.
What Intervention Services Do Our Family Need?
The substance abusers are different, the families are different, and the solutions are different. Therefore it is important to understand that the intervention goals themselves need to be different depending on the unique aspects of your family. Intervention Services utilizes several different intervention models and types, which allows room to choose the treatment and Continuum of Care options that best serve your family.
Types of Interventions:
There are three different types of interventions offered at Intervention Services.
1) Recovery Intervention: This type of intervention has, as its end goal, active and usually lifetime participation in recovery. This intervention is one conducted on someone who is, most probably, an alcoholic or addict. Although most commonly using traditional approaches such as Alcoholics Anonymous or Narcotics Anonymous, a recovery intervention may also include Christian or faith-based alternatives such as Celebrate Recovery or other support groups.
A Recovery Intervention may include one or many aspects of our continuum of care, including inpatient treatment followed by sober living residency for up to 6 months, followed by active participation is support group meetings, outpatient, etc. The majority of the interventions that we conduct are of this type. The goal of a Recovery Intervention is complete lifestyle change and dedication to recovery with treatment as the beginning.
2) Crisis Intervention: A Crisis Intervention only seeks to handle the immediate unhealthy behaviors of a loved one. If your loved one is temporarily binge drinking following a divorce or other trauma but doesn’t fully qualify as an “alcoholic”, what do we do then? Commit them to a lifetime of Alcoholics Anonymous?
When a child is only experimenting in drugs, or maybe only showing a few signs of abuse, it can sometimes be counter-productive to have one family member dedicated towards pushing a teenager into a lifetime commitment to participation in recovery meetings, and the rest of the family thinking that this is only an unhealthy phase that must be addressed. Intervention Services uses a Systemic form of interventions, which means that we have to work collectively as a family unit.
To disintegrate the family and work against each other is one of the worst things that can occur with any intervention. The goal of a Crisis Intervention is usually to get someone into treatment to handle the immediate problems.
3) Closure Intervention: A Closure Intervention allows a family to feel that they have done everything possible before moving on to a different stage in their life. Sometimes family members call us and they are rather blunt. “This intervention isn’t about Jim…it is about us.” Occasionally there are issues of child custody, years of alcohol and drug abuse, feelings of apathy, major illness surrounding a loved one who has “given up”, or just the understanding that the substance abuser has a short time left and we all need to know that we tried.
Closure interventions are a way for a family (or family member) to become “unstuck” Historically very powerful experiences for all involved, it is an honor for Intervention Services to help guide a family that needs an Intervention of Closure.
There are also three main models of intervention that are used. Which is used depends on the unique circumstances surrounding your loved one’s addiction and lifestyle.
1) Johnson Model:
This model of intervention is the most well-known. In this type of intervention, the family gathers and the addict is brought to the meeting through a ruse. At this point, they are confronted by their support group and given boundaries and a list of consequences if they do not attend rehab. This model works best for those drug users or alcoholics who are in denial about their addiction.
2) Invitational Intervention:
The invitational intervention is less confrontational than the Johnson model. In this model, the family and loved ones of the addict still come together and bring in the addict, but the addict is often invited to the meeting rather than tricked into attending it. They are also encouraged to attend rehab, rather than given strict ultimatums. This method works best for those who know they have a problem with addiction and want help on some level.
3) Family Systemic Model:
This model focuses on recovery beginning as something that the entire family experiences together, rather than something on which the addict must be confronted by and work on. You can think of this as more of a two-way conversation between the addict and the family. This is often best for addicts with co-occurring mental health conditions that contribute to their addiction.
In essence, it is important to have an intervention service provider that is willing and able to tailor the intervention towards
your needs and expected outcomes. Although we, at Intervention Services, are considered an authority on interventions, that doesn’t mean we must be inflexible.
Allow us to guide you through making a choice that has the ideal solutions for your loved ones.
- Click here to learn more about our Intervention process
- Different Reasons People Intervene
- Lifetime Support
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