If you have someone within your family who’s struggling with an alcohol or drug problem, it’ll usually affect the entire family rather than just the individual. Because of this, an intervention could be a very important part of helping the addicted individual obtain treatment. Often, family therapy interventions work in helping someone with an addiction problem see the problem in its entirety, allowing the individual to make the decision to get further help with assistance.
A family therapy intervention works much like a regular intervention, only the entire family will be present to receive help as a whole. The individual with the addiction will be given the opportunity to receive treatment, and the rest of the family will be shown how enabling the addiction has made the situation worse. All family members will also be able to receive help through further therapy sessions.
How Family Therapy Interventions Work
Prior to the intervention taking place, the intervention therapist will set a date and time for the family members to gather together and speak to the person struggling with the addiction. The location of the intervention should be held in a spot where the addict is comfortable. The individual may need to think she’s going to this place for a different reason in order to have positive results.
Pick an area where the addict won’t feel vulnerable; a spot where she’s used to going and feels at ease is best. Having an intervention in a place where the addict has never been before will just cause added stress, and the individual likely won’t listen to the information given as intently if she feels extremely uncomfortable. This is an important part of the intervention process.
Gather together all family members at this location at a specific time and wait for the arrival of the person with the addiction. It may be a good idea to have the therapist wait in another room until after the addict has arrived so she’s not caught off-guard with a stranger being in the room.
Allow the addict to enter and sit down. She may wonder why all of the family is in attendance along with her and will most likely have some questions as to why they’re there. At this time, have the therapist enter the room so the intervention process can begin.
The therapist will explain to the addict that she’s there because the rest of the family is concerned about her well-being. She may get upset at this time, but since the rest of the family is there with her, the individual may stay to listen to what the therapist has to say about the problem.
Allow each family member to tell the addict what they’re worried about and how they feel about the addiction in general. This part of the intervention typically will be an extremely emotional time for all involved. There may be some crying and emotional outbursts. The main thing is for the addict to remain comfortable and not threatened in any way. If everyone speaks in a genuine way, the addict likely will listen to the speeches. At no time should anyone act threatening or degrading about what the addict has been doing. She needs to hear the truth, but it should be done with tact and not degradation, or the addict may lash out and place blame.
At this time, the therapist can ask the addict questions concerning how she feels about the entire process that’s occurring. The addict will most likely say she’s upset at being ambushed. The therapist will need to include the other family members into the problem at this time. The addict will see that she’s not being singled out with her problem; rather, the family has contributed to the problem by allowing the behavior to continue and by enabling the addict to use the alcohol or drugs without consequence.
Family members will now need to answer questions about their behaviors regarding the addict. The addict will be able to see from a different view how the family has contributed to her addictive behavior, and that the addiction isn’t a healthy thing for anyone in the family. The therapist can recommend individual therapy for each member of the family, and members can continue with group therapy after the addict has started getting help for her problem.
The addict will need to make a decision on whether or not she’s going to accept the chance to get help for her addiction. If she’s agreeable, she’ll be taken immediately to a drug or alcohol rehabilitation center to start the process of becoming clean and free from the addiction.
Upon entering rehab, the addict will first go through a detox program that’ll allow her to get all of the drugs or alcohol out of her system. Doctors will be available to help guide her through this process, making the detoxification process a bit easier to handle. The medical staff may prescribe medication to help ease the symptoms of withdrawal.
From here, staff members will start the addict off with a healthy lifestyle that includes nutrition and an exercise program to improve health after stopping the addictive properties. The addict will begin therapy sessions within the rehabilitation center that include group and individual counseling. The addict’s family members can start their own therapy as well. When the addict gets out of the rehab program, the entire family can continue therapy together to help keep the same problem from starting again. Everyone will learn how to be supportive and how to stop certain triggers from occurring. The addict will learn coping mechanisms to avoid relapse once the program is completed.
Help With Family Therapy Interventions
A family therapy intervention is a great way to show the addict that there are people who care and that she’s not the only one who has been handling the situation incorrectly. Together, family members can get through the struggles and work as a unit in finding a solution. If you have further questions pertaining to or need help with family therapy interventions, give the hotline a call at 800-447-9081 today.