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Why You Should Use an Intervention Specialist to Help Your Loved One

a young man together with family members during an intervention at a rehab center

If your loved one is struggling with drug or alcohol abuse, holding an intervention can be a powerful way to help them realize they need help and to get clean or sober. At the same time, an intervention is a big step. It’s not something that you should just do without a significant amount of preparation and knowledge. Here, an intervention specialist can be especially valuable.

An intervention specialist is someone who can help you to research, organize, plan, and stage your intervention. They provide the guidance, support, and resources you need to take your idea of holding an intervention and making it a reality, in an as safe, comfortable, and effective manner as possible for everyone involved.

Today, more than 48.7 million Americans struggle with drug and alcohol addiction. Just 11% get the treatment they need to get better. Asking for professional help ensures you have the tools to work towards getting your loved one into treatment and recovery.

Research is Difficult On Your Own

It’s important to keep in mind that researching for an intervention is a lot. You’ll have to figure out where to look for resources and how to find them before you ever get started about what works and what doesn’t. If you work with an intervention specialist, they can just hand you the resources you need. Whether that’s information about interventions, about treatment options, about how substance abuse and addiction works, or about how to frame what you want to say so you actually get through to your loved one doesn’t matter – the specialist knows where those resources are and can just hand them to you. That will save you a significant amount of time and effort while ensuring you actually have the information you need.

Interventions are Traumatic

a male client together with a mental health expert during an intervention

Interventions are extremely emotional. They’re meant to be. In most cases, they involve confronting your loved one with the depth of their substance use disorder and how much it impacts the people they love. People with substance use disorders can react very badly. They can react with anger, grief, and shame. People with mental health issues can spiral into anxiety and anxiety or panic attacks. Sometimes those can be serious enough to require medical intervention. Guilt and shame can trigger depression to push someone into suicidal thoughts. It’s important that you have professional insight to help with managing emotions and ensuring that everyone has the support they need to get through the intervention as safely as possible. That can mean planning your approach and what to say, it can mean ensuring that a counselor is on hand, and it can mean ensuring that things like making sure your loved one isn’t left alone between the intervention and being checked into treatment are all handled.

You’re Probably Stressed Yourself

Dealing with someone you love having mental and physical health problems is intensely traumatic. By the time you think of an intervention, you’ve probably been through a lot. That means you’re not in the best mental health to manage things, to do the required research, and to make the calls that will bring your intervention together. The more stressed you are, the less you’ll be able to manage everything. Having an expert on hand to take that off your plate will mean you can focus on how you want to talk to your loved one and what your message should be. That means you’ll have more safety in knowing everything is planned to go well and more time and energy to dedicate to what you actually care about – getting through to your loved one.

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Third-Party or Neutral Insight

Everyone has heard the phrase “can’t see the forest through the trees” and it’s also important for an intervention. If you’re so close to a problem that you can’t see the broader picture, you might not be able to plan an intervention well. An intervention specialist can offer third-party and neutral insight to guide your decisions based on what’s happening, without the emotional baggage of being part of the situation. That can be extremely valuable, especially in tumultuous and emotional situations. That third party insight can come into play when:

a male client together with a family member during an intervention
  • Choosing who gets to be there
  • Deciding on messaging and approach
  • Figuring out next steps
  • Planning a location
  • Figuring out what kind of aftercare and support is needed

You might be able to handle all of this on your own, but having someone step in to assess it and help you can be extremely useful.

Everyone Needs to Be on the Same Page

It’s important that everyone in the intervention be on the same page. You want to deliver a strong and cohesive message telling your loved one that their substance abuse is hurting them and you. That means aligning everyone, preparing, learning about addiction, and working together as a group. Having an intervention specialist on your team will simplify that process. It also means that the work of aligning messaging and choosing messaging is handed over to someone who isn’t biased. You won’t have to deal with figuring out who gets the final say or who has to decide that a message should not be included because your intervention specialist will handle that. And, they’ll help you with messaging to ensure that everyone knows how to frame what they are saying to say “I care about you and I want you to get better”.

Eventually, your intervention is a last effort at forcing change and helping someone before they hurt themselves further. You need a strong message. Everyone needs to be on the same page. Having a professional help you get there will be a good thing.

Follow-up is Critical

Holding an intervention is not enough. You also have to follow up by getting your loved one into rehab and treatment – and as quickly as possible following the intervention. An intervention specialist can make that easier by ensuring that everything is arranged. For example, admittance into a detox clinic, into a rehab center, flight tickets, and any other travel accommodations that are necessary. You can, of course, handle everything yourself. However, intervention specialists often work directly with rehab centers that are prepared to take patients last minute and with little preparation meaning you can often move your loved one into treatment in as little as 24 hours after the intervention. That will help to ensure that they can’t relapse or change their mind – so your intervention has the best possible chance of succeeding.


a male client with his wife during an intervention at a rehab center

An intervention is a big step. It’s often your last effort to help your loved one – or at least a perceived last effort after everything else has failed. Often, it also means confronting your loved one with a lot of emotions and trying to back them into a corner to agree to get help. That can be difficult and traumatic. It also requires a significant amount of planning and research to do well. Asking an intervention specialist for help can mean you get the resources to do that well, while having someone on your team to take on the burden of planning, aligning everyone, and figuring out who’s invited and why. That won’t make your intervention easy, but it will ensure you have the time and space to focus on getting through to your loved one rather than handling the very necessary details and emotional management at the same time. Good luck with your intervention.

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Medical Disclaimer: Nothing on this Website is intended to be taken in place of medical advice. Before making any decisions regarding your health, please consult your doctor. The staff at Stairway Resource Center develops a custom treatment plan for each of our patients. Specific medical advice will be provided to our patients by our professional providers while in our care.