It’s challenging to know when and how to help a loved one who is struggling with an addiction. The “when” often presents itself in ways like extreme emotions or erratic behavior, denial, and continuation of the abuse, drinking in the morning and at work, history of overdosing, issues with the law regarding abuse, ongoing financial crisis, and deterioration of relationships at home and work.

The “how” can vary, but here are steps to consider when it comes to helping your loved one find help.

Tip #1 – Plan and prepare. 

Start a group of those who will help in the intervention. Call or meet with an addiction counselor who can help instruct you in the process; their advice can ease your emotions and guide you along. Research the condition your loved one is battling with so that you have a better understanding of what they’re up against.

Tips #2 – Rehearse and discuss.

The group or team that will be involved personally on the day of intervention needs to meet together and discuss facts and issues, share solutions, give insight, and rehearse how the intervention will go. Do not let your loved one know of the rehearsal. Take notes on what to say and be prepared to explain to the loved one how their actions have grieved you. Decide on specific consequences for the loved one if they choose to not accept treatment. Set up your date for intervention.

Tip #3 – Intervene.

Without revealing the reason to your loved one with the addiction, invite them to the place of intervention where the others will be meeting. Each member can then take turns expressing their concerns and how the addiction has affected them. Then present the loved one with a treatment option on the spot, and do not threaten the consequence unless you’re willing to follow through with it.

Tip #4 – Share stories.

Share the stories of others that have gone through treatment and are now on the other side and successful. There are many videos out there that give testimonies on how they got through.

Tip #5 – Help them get an assessment for treatment.

The first step is always the hardest. If you encourage them to take that first step, each step after will be much easier.

We hope this helps. If your loved one agrees to some type of MnTC service, please call 612-FREEDOM (373-3366) to set up an appointment today.

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