why some interventions don't succeed

5 Reasons Some Interventions Don’t Succeed

Just as it’s essential to understand the factors involved in a successful intervention, it’s equally critical to consider what obstacles might prevent one from going well. Once you have a better concept of the challenges you might face, you’ll improve your chances of overcoming these roadblocks and successfully guiding your loved one to an appropriate treatment program.

1. Not Presenting a Unified Front

For an intervention to be effective, everyone involved in staging the meeting must be on the same page. For example, if one speaker feels another is being too harsh on the participant, they’ll likely show their discomfort through their body language. The addict may be able to detect that and exploit any chinks in the armor.

This example illustrates the reason it’s so critical to rehearse for the meeting as a group, instead of trying to wing it. When all the participants have heard what the others are planning to say ahead of time, there are no surprises that might create friction and derail the intervention.

2. Allowing Negotiation

The point of an intervention is to drive home the point that you will no longer put up with your addicted loved one’s destructive or impulsive behavior, and that they need to get help for their substance abuse. However, don’t underestimate the remarkably manipulative behavior of many people who fall prey to an addiction. If anyone in the intervention group gives the subject any leeway, they may take this as a sign of weakness and take advantage of it. Don’t be wishy-washy or leave the door open to negotiations like a promise to cut back on substance use. Prepare what you will say if the subject tries to loosen your conditions.

3. Losing Tempers

During any intervention situation, emotions will be running high, and anger is one of them. However, allowing that anger to boil over is one of the surest ways to ruin your carefully laid plans. Make sure everyone understands the importance of remaining calm and collected, and consider enlisting the services of a professional interventionist to help keep anger and other strong emotions in check.

4. Not Doing Your Homework

It’s nearly impossible to convince someone you care about to get help when you don’t understand the damage addiction can cause, or don’t know what addiction rehab programs entail. Demonstrating you’ve taken the time to do your research helps the intervention subject appreciate the seriousness of the situation and your commitment to helping them. On the other hand, if you are obviously uninformed, the addicted individual will be less likely to follow your advice.

Make sure you have at least a cursory understanding of the person’s substance of abuse and how it affects their brain and body. Intervention planning also requires you to research the addiction treatment options that are most appropriate for helping your loved one get clean and sober. For example, some rehab facilities take a traditional 12-step approach, while others offer more secular options. Depending on your family member’s preferences and beliefs, these factors can make a significant difference.

5. Treatment Barriers

Sometimes, addicted people cite an inaccessibility of treatment as a significant barrier to their recovery. For example, they may be worried about losing their job if they take time off to pursue residential rehab.

Here, again, is where a thorough understanding of treatment options comes into play. Being able to present them with a solution like using the Family and Medical Leave Act for addiction rehab can help your loved one see there is an appropriate option out there for them.

Restoring Hope to Families 

Watching your loved one struggle with addiction and its associated mental and behavioral difficulties can be heart-wrenching, but you can make a difference in the life of someone you care about. At Whitman Recovery Service, our qualified interventionists use their three decades of experience to help thousands of people from coast to coast get lifesaving treatment. Contact us today to learn more about our services.