View Full Version : "Interventions" - share your stories.
05-17-2009, 12:26 PM
I was recently invited to take part in an intervention. I did not do so because A: I barely know the man and B: If it were me, and you were to invade my home uninvited, even with the best of intentions, I would react very strongly and very negatively. I told them I think it is a bad idea.
But I know everyone is different and so I suppose it would not have become somewhat of a cliche if it hadn't worked somewhere.
Tell us about your experiences, good or bad.
05-17-2009, 01:44 PM
I think that the only successful intervention is when you catch the drunk/junkie at just the right time- when they are in the grip of pitiful and incomprehensible demoralization... or when they have a wicked hangover and feel really bad about something. ;)
But seriously, they probably backfire more than they succeed, or the junkie in question just goes along with it long enough to get the heat off.
In my own case, the "intervention" was very low-key. It was just me, my mom & my dad, sitting at the dining room table. No histrionics, no drama, just calm, serious discussion of the fact that I had become a danger to myself and others, and that it was going to stop, right fucking now. If I didn't agree with the treatment plan, steps would be taken towards something less voluntary.
I was ready, so I went. That was March 4, 1991, and I've been sober ever since. But most people don't stay sober. The key to success was hitting me at just the right time (it's not as if we hadn't had many similar conversations in the past), but that was just a damned lucky coincidence.
05-17-2009, 04:16 PM
Here's a story.
Some people I know were exhausted from their niece/daughter/sister's addiction and had seen Intervention on TV and felt pretty confident they could do the same thing.
The only problem was the hadn't consulted any professional and hadn't secured any treatment for this girl. After a long and contentious intervention she capitulated and the family was vindicated.
They mentally broke this kid (as is kind of necessary) and then had no further answers.
Then they had the brilliance to leave her alone for the night.
She hung herself.
05-17-2009, 07:30 PM
I think those television shows (Intervention, Celebrity Rehab, Sober House) are the worst sort of exploitation and misleading melodramatic bullshit. The family in the above post who got their bright idea from TV and ran with it without benefit of professional advice/training/assistance/treatment/follow up breaks my heart with their stupidity.
Alcoholism and drug addiction are no joke, and too many families think they can bring a knife to a gun fight in dealing with them (or discover they are hopelessly out-gunned once they get there... if you know what I mean). Our lifestyle while we're drinking and using is not for the weak- get our backs up and you will have one hell of a fight on your hands. It takes REAL backbone, courage and will power to keep doing what we do, every day. ;)
There are physical, emotional and psychological components to alcoholism and addiction- a competent treatment plan will address all of these.
05-18-2009, 03:25 AM
I don't know if this counts as an intervention or not, but a few years ago we grabbed a good friend and informed him that he absolutely, positively had to move out of his parents' basement before he turned 30 the following month, and we didn't get off his case until he agreed. I even found him an resonably-priced apartment beforehand.
It took several hours, but it worked. He was out within 2 weeks.
05-18-2009, 04:21 AM
Kind of along the same lines as the last post...
My first "real" relationship and I was slowly drifting away from a couple of my friends. They decided to meet me in a coffee shop one Saturday (friends C, T and L) and they didn't tell me why. I was a little suspicious but I went.
They harangued me for about an hour. I'm not sure why I stayed. I heard them out, but I was really pissed off. They wanted me to leave the boyfriend, or if I wouldn't do that at least spend some more time with them. They came at me from a position of concern and caring.
I was angry because they were using the good feelings I had for them against me. They assumed that I would do what they wanted. I don't even care if they had good intentions. I don't even care that the guy I was with was kind of a scumbag. They shouldn't have taken advantage of the trust I had in them.
I can only imagine how violated I would have felt (and ashamed) had I actually been doing drugs. I didn't leave the boyfriend, and I probably wouldn't have stopped drugs either.
Found out later that C had been sleeping with the boyfriend.
05-18-2009, 10:36 AM
My sister and her husband are former addicts.
They moved across country a couple of years ago after graduating from college. While in college, I knew they were casual users, but my own naivete (sp?) figured they would grow out of it when they found jobs, etc.
While on the West Coast they found heroin. Mom, Dad and me flew out to get them some help. We had contacted two separate treatment facilities and arranged for each of them to be seen. We contacted his parents and they came out separately as well. We formulated a plan to never leave them alone. He was in worse shape than my sister was, so he entered treatment before his parents got there and within 24 hours of our arrival. We knew we needed to separate them to get this to work. He had no insurance, so he went to the crappy low-cost county center. My sister had a job and insurance, so she went to a private hospital treatment facility. We thought we had everything going well.
Their apartment was disgusting. Needles everywhere, no food, blood all over the bathroom. The brand new mattress that my parents bought them was covered in blood. The boyfriend (now husband) had lost about 75 lbs and looked like the stereotypical junkie. They had sold all their valuables to buy drugs. I found weed, cocaine, heroin and crack in various hiding places around the apartment.
They tried to fight going to treatment, but we weren't taking no for an answer. Both left their respective facilities 3 days into treatment. He left treatment after they would no longer give him sedatives to help with withdrawal. He found out where my sister was (not sure how) and called her and told her he needed her and would kill himself if she didn't get out now. Looking back on it, we should have tried to get her into a place where you go for 30 days and aren't allowed outside contact.
His parents arrived and flew them back to PA. Once home, they both got the Naltrexone Implant. It worked for a little while, then they both got back on the horse.
He was arrested for some stuff, and that is what seems to have provided the impetus for them to both be clean.
It was probably about 9 months after the intervention that they both cleaned up. Our initial intervention may not have "worked" as planned, but it did bring them back home where family could keep better track of them and not let things get as bad as they did.
05-18-2009, 10:44 AM
I have a friend who considered doing this with her brother a few weeks back. I suggested it as a possibility for the family (they are at their wit's end and he has been close to death a couple times in recent months). I think they decided not to do it. He has gone in and out of treatment a couple times during the last year, but it's not helping.
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