Alcoholism Interventions can successfully treat alcholics.

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     Alcoholism Interventions

Alcoholism Interventions are also known as "Short-term Planned Family Interventions" or, simply, "Interventions" for short. The goal of an Intervention is to breakthrough the denial of an alcoholic in such a way that he or she will become willing to accept treatment, and to create an environment that makes it safe to do so.

What are the Benefits of an Intervention?

Alcohol Interventions are extremely powerful and moving experiences for all involved. One hopes, of course, that the immediate result will be that the alcoholic accepts the need for treatment, and takes immediate steps to enter treatment. But even if the alcoholic does not agree to pursue treatment on the spot, Alcohol Interventions are of enormous value to all involved.

1) The participants will have had an opportunity to organize and to express their thoughts and feelings about the situation in a way that is helpful and clarifying for them.

2) Participants will know that they have done everything possible to assist the alcoholic in accepting and obtaining needed treatment.

3) The alcoholic will have absorbed the emotional tone of love, support and challenge even if he or she is too overwhelmed or foggy to fully take in all that has been communicated. The experience will remain with the alcoholic and may help him or her to be ready to pursue treatment at a later time.

What is the Process?

The process entails one or more meetings with the significant others of an alcoholic -- without the alcoholic present. The number of sessions required prior to the final meeting will depend on the readiness of the participants. Just one or two meetings will suffice in many cases. There is then a final meeting that includes the alcoholic.

"Significant others" usually means family members, close friends, and sometimes, even employers. There are several criteria to consider when deciding whom to include:

1) The alcoholic must have a meaningful connection with each participant, and each participant must genuinely care about the alcoholic's welfare and well-being.

2) Each participant must have the capacity to contain angry feelings so that he or she can speak in an empathic and concerned manner to the alcoholic during the final meeting. The goal is that the alcoholic not feel attacked, and not become any more defensive and resistant than he or she is already feeling.

3) Participants should themselves be free of any substance abuse. They should have some basic understanding of addiction, or be open to learning some of the basics during the process.

What is the Role of the Interventionists?

The Interventionists, or facilitators, have three main objectives:

1) To create an environment that is safe for all participants including, most especially, the alcoholic.

2) To prepare all participants to express their thoughts, feelings and wishes to the alcoholic in the most authentic, effective, and emotionally powerful manner possible.

3) To evaluate what type of treatment is likely to be the most appropriate for the alcoholic should he or she accept treatment, and to assist the family in making arrangements for such treatment.

4) To help participants to think about appropriate consequences should the alcoholic refuse treatment.

What Happens During the Final Meeting?

Some people refer to the final meeting as "The Confrontation." We do not use this term because it carries connotations of aggression that are totally inappropriate. The final meeting is an opportunity for participants to present a mirror of reality to the alcoholic in a powerful and compelling manner. This must be done in a way that the alcoholic feels bathed in a sea of support and caring, yet at the same time is made to recognize that the consequences of refusing the help that is being offered will be quite negative, and the price high. lf, as hoped, the alcoholic agrees to accept treatment, one or more participants will be prepared to bring him or her directly from the Intervention to the treatment facility.




We provide Interventions in Westchester, NY
and the greater New York Area


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