How to Know When It’s Time to Intervene on a Loved One
Addiction can have a considerable impact on the life of the addict and their loved ones. Drug and alcohol abuse can leave families in ruins, tear apart friendships, and ruin relationships. If you have a loved one who is suffering from addiction, you are likely wondering how you can assist. In most instances, simply having a conversation about their addiction may not yield the results you want. This is because those who struggle with substance abuse are in denial about the severity of their addiction. One such technique toward improvement is staging an intervention.
What is an Intervention?
Simply put, an intervention is a gathering of friends and family who attempt to persuade the addicted to get help for their ailment. For those who are conducting an intervention for the first time, it is recommended to have an interventionist or doctor present to guide the process. To prepare for an intervention, you should write down personal, non-attacking letters to the addicted, an action plan for addiction treatment, and an ultimatum. Being prepared for the event is critical to making the individual realize how much their addiction impacts those around them.
Signs for When an Intervention Should be Staged
Multiple signs indicate you should hold an intervention for your loved one. These include:
If someone you know suddenly does not look like they did yesterday, then it doesn’t mean they are addicted. Everyone has bad and lazy days. However, if this becomes a habit, they are either depressed, addicted or both. Typically, when their center of life is a vice, their appearance is the last topic on their mind. Simple daily routines like brushing your teeth, washing your clothes, and personal hygiene take a back seat to find the fix.
Inconsistent Behavior Patterns
When you know someone, their work ethic, their mannerisms and one day something seems amiss, it is best to monitor. Most people have bad days sometimes but if the behavior continues, this is a red flag. Inconsistencies include sudden schedule changes and going out late at night with no destination. Noticing this type of pattern is the first step towards addiction treatment.
Effects on Loved Ones
When an individual is addicted to a substance, it negatively impacts family, friends, and everyone’s finances. Marriages are often ended due to addiction and children living at home with it suffer from neglect and abuse with feelings of anger and build brewing inside. Not to mention the financial burden as a result of addiction can have a major impact on any family.
Addiction to drugs and alcohol can have serious health risks for the abuser. If you see a decline in your loved one’s health, then an intervention needs to be planned immediately. Those who suffer from substance abuse are in denial about their addiction. Accompanied by substance abuse is multiple health issues that must be addressed during the intervention.
Those who need a few extra bottles of beer each night or regular refilling of their prescription to get the same effect are showcasing higher tolerances. This means their body is building up a defense mechanism to their vice which requires more each time they get high or drunk. This behavior runs the risk of overdosing the more it continues so they need immediate addiction treatment.
The addicted typically hold a huge mental load that someone who has never been addicted will fail to understand. They know others will disapprove so they become lost and isolate themselves from others. They do not attend social events, even required gatherings, and become difficult to find.
Most are unaware of the extent of their addiction until they are arrested. If your loved one is facing charges, it is time for them to enter an addiction treatment program. Those who struggle with addiction never blame their substance abuse so intervention will help them see the truth.
Forgetting something important regularly or taking a long time to respond are early indicators that your friend or family members are addicted to, and they need an intervention. Do not brush this off as them being tired, especially when it becomes regular behavior. Monitor the situation and see if it continues or worsens.
Before organizing the gathering you must have a plan ready. You need to know the exact problems you wish to address and even practice saying them without having anger in your voice. Being accusatory and raising your voice toward your loved one will push them further away and make them resentful to what you are saying. A doctor or interventionist can ensure the situation remains on-track.
Don’t let addiction destroy your family and friends. Staging an intervention can make a difference in your life and theirs. It must be managed carefully and appropriately but will be successful if you have a plan that can be executed.