Does an Intervention Have to Be Confrontational?

Does an Intervention Have to Be Confrontational?Due to a closer analysis of the results of different intervention styles, as well as the increased awareness of their value in helping addicts seek recovery, interventions have evolved since the 1940s and need not be confrontational or dramatic events.

Early interventions were conducted under the premise that family members should use an aggressive approach designed to make the addict see his or her behavior in a clear and harsh light, feel a certain amount of humiliation and resolve to change.

A newer intervention strategy suggests that family members in Seattle approach the addict in a gentle, compassionate way that stresses love, acceptance and solidarity. The addict is encouraged to seek help, and the family provides support to help the addict overcome the disease.

Intervention Options for Seattle Residents

Today there are a variety of options for interventions. A simple, quiet conversation between an addict and a loved one that identifies the addict’s unacceptable behaviors and results in the addict seeking treatment is an intervention.

Family-conducted interventions are more formally planned and executed and may either use the more compassionate approach or the aggressive approach.

More people are seeking the help of an interventionist or family mediator who assists the family throughout the entire process of planning, rehearsing, implementing and following up on an intervention.

About Confrontation and Addiction Interventions

The dictionary provides two definitions for confrontation: a face-to-face meeting and the clashing of forces or ideas. Therefore, any time a person talks directly to an addict and points out the pain that person is causing by his or her addiction, this can be considered a form of confrontation. At the other extreme, highly dramatized television programs often portray the clashing of ideas. In either case, for some addicts, this confrontation provides an impetus to change.

Many people in Seattle think that an intervention is an informal group of friends and loved ones sitting in a room taking turns talking to their loved one about their drug use. While it may appear to be informal, a great deal of thought and preparation went into having the intervention.

Planning an Intervention for a Loved One Struggling with Addiction

The Mayo Clinic strongly suggests the use of an interventionist stating, “Consulting an intervention professional (interventionist), an addiction specialist, psychologist or mental health counselor can help you organize an effective intervention.”

The steps for an intervention include the following:

  • Planning – In this step, the idea of an intervention is discussed and a planning group is convened
  • Gathering information – The group defines the extent of the addict’s problem and researches the condition and treatment programs
  • Forming the intervention team – The group determines the people who will participate in the intervention
  • Deciding on specific consequences – Each member of the team should identify the consequences that he or she is prepared to implement if the addict does not seek treatment
  • Writing down what to say – Each member needs to write down what he or she plans to say, share that information with the team, and practice his or her comments
  • The intervention meeting – Conducting the actual intervention meeting
  • Follow-up

With so many critical steps, consulting an interventionist increases your chance for success.

Get Help with Interventions

Staging an intervention can be an effective strategy for many people who are addicted to drugs. However, planning and conducting an intervention is not always easy, and can often be more effectively accomplished with professional help. Please call our toll free number today to speak with a trained addiction counselor about any questions or concerns you have about interventions and drug and alcohol abuse.  We are available 24 hours a day to answer any questions you might have and help you find the right resources and treatment for you and your family.