As a substance abuse counselor or a person in general, you will eventually know someone that you truly care about that has become entangled in the web of substance abuse in need of a substance abuse intervention. Very rarely will these persons seek help of their own accord. It is up to someone who loves them to take a strong hand and use a tough love approach by creating a substance abuse intervention for them. There are many types of substance abuse interventions possible, and they vary in style and length. How you choose to approach is up to you, but consider what it is the user may need as well.
Substance Abuse Intervention – The Approach
Does your loved one need a confrontation by their loved ones and family to shock them out of substance abuse? This type of substance abuse intervention relies upon their emotional connections with those planning the intervention. The loved ones gather around and force the abuser to listen and understand the damage they are doing to their family, friends, and relationships. They are forced to sit in the midst of the suffering they are creating for themselves and others.
Another form of substance abuse intervention is much more formal in its methods. The person is confronted and made to agree to either outpatient or inpatient substance abuse treatment. This is done to apply cognitive dissonance. Their minds often come into alignment with things they have agreed upon outloud as to avoid dissonance. Both inpatient and outpatient will involve an initial screening of the patient. It will likely involve treatment planning with a psychiatrist, psychologist, and counselors. The user will be made to attend group and individual counseling and be subject to regularly scheduled urine testing to see whether or not they have been using. They will be made to get involved with community based services to help the community they have actively engaged in harming with their activities. They are forced to foster relationships with those close to them and mend the damages done. When enough of this has transpired, the user will be set up with relapse prevention meetings and an after care program.
Substance Abuse Intervention – What is Really Is
There are misconceptions about what the process of an intervention is. There are television programs that make substance abuse interventions appear like emotional ambushes and gigantic guilt trips. There are those that make inpatient and outpatient treatment both seem like a prison type situation or boot camp or brainwashing camp. A true substance abuse intervention is based on honesty towards those we love. It is honesty about damage and pain. It is honesty about hope for a better future. It is a hope about mending relationships and fixing wrongs and moving forward. It about setting firm and solid boundaries and limits. A substance abuse intervention is an opportunity for the user to finally admit he or she needs help and has a problem. It is an opportunity to be removed from the negative environment and go through detoxification so that they may gain a clearer mind to perceive what has to be done. Once this is done, a truly objective self-analysis and personal inventory can be done. This is what a substance abuse intervention is, and why it is helpful. It may feel like guilt, blame, shame, and chastisement, but it is really a help and push into the right direction, which is a treatment program.