MYTHS AND FACTS
FACT: Denial is a primary feature of the disease, so very few seek help on their own. Intervention is one of the most misunderstood aspects of helping people with substance use, mental health, and other behavioral problems. Interventions came about because family members with a loved one who refused help were told there was nothing they could do.
Intervention is a very effective means of helping someone who is unable to see their problem. It is a compassionate and necessary process. With the guidance of a professional interventionist, family members share their love and concerns, speaking respectfully, openly, and honestly.
Myth: Intervention doesn’t work or won’t work for my loved one because you can’t help someone until they want help.
Fact: Intervention does work. The intervention process research shows that when properly done, 80% of people go to treatment following an intervention.
Myth: Even if my loved one goes to treatment they won’t stay sober.
Fact: Hazelden did a 25 year study to determine if people who voluntarily go to treatment do better than those who are court ordered. What they found is the opposite of what most people think. The court ordered population stayed in treatment longer and stayed sober longer than the voluntary population. This holds true when you look at recovery rates of physicians as well. Physicians because they are accountable to their board have a 78% sustained recovery rate after five years.The key ingredient was the accountability to someone else. The intervention team has the same ability to support long term recovery.
Myth: Intervention is highly confrontational and shaming; it’s also disrespectful because you’re telling them what to do.
Fact: Intervention is an act of love. It is structured to eliminate the shame and stigma that often accompany addiction and mental health disorders. The intervention team does not tell their loved one what to do, instead they share their love and concerns and then ask them to seek help. Nothing could be more loving than offering them viable alternative to a life-limiting and fatal disease.
Myth: Intervention is only effective for substance use disorders.
Fact: Intervention was initially developed for substance use disorders but is an effective process for mental health, behavioral, and even medical issues.