Watching the life of someone you love spiral out of control as a result of a chemical dependency is one of the most frustrating things a person can endure.
If she had diabetes, heart disease, or cancer, she would probably be eager to take whatever measures were necessary to take care of the illness.
But someone with substance use disorder often even denies the existence of their condition — the idea of looking for the best womens recovery centers for her is the last thing on her mind. This is why so many people consider addictions to be baffling, cunning, and powerful diseases.
At New Directions For Women, however, it’s a problem our staff are trained to face.
Our staffers are educated in not just one but three different intervention models (Systemic, Johnson, and Arise) which we can apply to lovingly encourage the woman you love to seek out treatment for their substance use disorder.
The Basics of Finding Help
The path to an intervention usually follows five steps: first, you find help. Then, you empathize with her. Next, you talk with them about the possibility of getting help. You will find she resists, so expect this. Finally, if necessary, intervene.
The process of finding help starts with talking with someone who has dealt with addiction before. The problem is almost certainly too large for you to handle alone.
Books, Al-Anon meetings, and psychologists or psychiatrists who are trained or personally experienced in the addiction field are all excellent resources — though you should be sure that anyone you talk to either has formal training or experience specifically with addictions. (Not all professionals have this.)
Remember, your role in this is crucially important. It’s not likely she will seek help on her own; chances are, you’re the one with the time and the energy to intervene. Ultimately, you want her to recognize her problem and seek help — but it will probably take some nudging from you.
One thing you should keep in mind, of course.
Nobody plans on developing a chemical dependency. These lifestyles carry a sense of shame and stigma. You therefore must try to understand how she thinks and feels. If you can understand her without judging her, you’ve already made a major step forward.
Talk To Her About Getting Help
When you talk to her about her problem, you should have planned in advance what you’ll say. Ask her questions — and then listen with an honest, open heart and mind.
Mention any changes you may have seen in her and concerns you might have. At the same time, you should make sure to talk with her when there won’t be interruptions. (If she’s an adolescent, be sure you’re not around her friends when you talk.)
Now, realize that the idea of living a substance-free life may be terrifying to her. Even if she’s aware she has a problem, she still might not want to change. Whatever you do, keep your lines of communication open.
If it becomes clear you need a formal or an informal intervention, contact New Directions for Women and we will help you plan and stage the meeting.
Traditionally, interventions include an initial training session for you and other concerned members of the family, where we will go over what to do in advance.
The actual intervention will be guided by one of our professional interventionists.