May 30, 2019 Felicia Durling

Time for Tough Love: How to Stage an Alcohol Intervention

There are approximately 88,000 deaths every year related to excessive alcohol use. That statistic is especially frightening for people who have loved ones suffering from alcoholism.

Unfortunately, many people who suffer from alcoholism don’t see themselves as having a problem. They can’t see how their alcohol abuse is affecting their health, social life, work life, and overall wellbeing.

That’s where you can help. By organizing an alcohol intervention, you can gather up other loved ones to share your concerns with the alcoholic in your life. And more importantly, you can come up with a plan to help them become sober.

Keep reading to learn the steps of staging a successful intervention!

Before the Intervention

An intervention should not be an impromptu event. It takes careful planning if you want it to be successful. Here’s what you need to do before the intervention.

Assemble an Intervention Team

This is a pivotal step for any intervention. Your team should consist of a few other people who your loved one respects and values. You should not include people on the team who currently abuse drugs or alcohol.

You could include someone who is also in recovery, a close friend, family members, and other people your loved one will listen to. Make sure each person has something unique to contribute to the intervention.

Don’t include people who have held grudges toward your loved one. Although they may want to see them heal and live a sober life, they might turn hostile during the intervention.

Determine the Time and Place

The setting of the intervention is important because you want your loved one to feel safe, but you don’t want them to feel too comfortable.

For example, it’s generally not a good idea to hold an intervention at the alcoholic’s home. They will be able to retreat to their room and lock themselves away if they want to.

A good place to hold an intervention would be at a family member or friend’s house. Make sure it’s not somewhere your loved one has experienced any negative situations or trauma.

Plan What Each Person Will Say

You need to gather the intervention team and rehearse what each person will say. You can each share how your loved one’s alcohol problem has affected others.

You can also share things you’ve noticed about your loved one, like missing work or drinking alcohol in the morning. It may seem obvious, but sometimes people can’t see how big of a problem their drinking has become.

You should also determine the order everyone will talk in. Who will talk first, who will talk last? Go through the order at least once so everyone is comfortable.

During the Intervention

After taking the proper steps to prepare, it’s time for the intervention. Here’s what you need to remember during the intervention.

Stick to the Script

You spent time before the intervention rehearsing what you’ll say, but when the time comes and nerves are higher, you might panic. That’s why it’s important to bring notes with you on everything you want to discuss.

If you find yourself swaying from the script, bring yourself back to what you rehearsed. This will ensure you say everything you need to say, without getting caught up in the emotions of the situation.

Keep Your Emotions at Bay

If your loved one is in denial about their drinking problem, there’s a chance things could get heated. They may feel like they’re being teamed up on, or that you all are out to get them.

If this happens, it’s important to stay calm.

Don’t allow yourself to get heated up along with your loved one. Diffuse the tension and try to talk your loved one down. If the intervention team starts getting angry or upset, the intervention will be over very quickly and will end with your loved one storming out.

After the Intervention

Once the intervention is over, there are two potential steps that will need to be taken. Here’s what you’ll do after the intervention.

Time for Rehab

If the intervention is successful and your loved one agrees that they have a drinking problem, it’s time to check into rehab.

Detoxing from alcohol can be dangerous and even life-threatening, especially if they have been abusing alcohol for many years.

By checking into a high-quality rehab center, your loved one will have 24/7 medical attention, along with individual and group therapy. And of course, they’ll be in an alcohol-free environment, which is extremely important in the early stages of recovery.

This will give them the best chance to sober up and actually stay sober after they’ve detoxed.

Don’t Give Up

If the intervention was not successful, it’s important that you don’t give up. Your loved one may not be ready to admit they have a problem. But that doesn’t mean they’ll never be ready.

It can be frustrating to lend a helping hand only to have it pushed aside. But give your loved one time, and hold another intervention down the line. Figure out what went wrong at the last one, and make adjustments. Assemble a new team and pick a different setting.

It may take a few tries to get through to your loved one, but it’ll be worth it when it finally works.

Holding an Alcohol Intervention Is Only the Beginning

An alcohol intervention marks the beginning of the recovery journey for your loved one. But if you continue to support them and give them the tools they need to live a sober life, there is hope.

If you’re looking for the perfect rehab center for your loved one, check out our addiction recovery services today and give us a call to learn more.


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