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How to Hold an Alcohol Intervention for Your Son

If your son’s relationship with alcohol is ruining his life, but he remains stubbornly in denial about the extent of his problems, an alcohol intervention can be one of the most successful ways to convince him to enter an accredited treatment program. An intervention is a carefully planned meeting that can persuade your loved one to agree to break the cycle of addiction by seeking help. Here are some tips that can help an alcohol intervention go smoothly.

1. Plan Every Detail

Popular media depictions of interventions tend to portray them as spontaneous “ambushes” that occur only after everyone involved has reached their breaking point. In reality, that approach will likely lead to failure. The most successful alcohol interventions require careful planning to help counter an addict’s objections, overcome denial and avoid creating an emotionally fraught situation.

Carefully rehearse every aspect of the intervention, including:

  • Who will participate.
  • What each person will say.
  • When people will arrive. (Tip: Pick a time when your son is sober.)
  • Where you will hold the intervention.
  • What happens if your son agrees to get help.
  • What the consequences will be if your son rejects the offer of help, or reacts with hostility.

2. Research Rehab Centers on His Behalf

When planning an intervention, your top priority is helping your son admit that he has a problem he can’t solve without professional help. It stands to reason, then, that you should be proactive and research available facilities ahead of time. Not all rehab programs are the same, and some offer specific treatment philosophies or amenities that might benefit your son’s needs more than others.

For example, perhaps you know he would thrive in a single-gender environment that minimizes distractions. When you find an alcohol rehab program that’s a good fit for your son’s needs, check that they accept your insurance and have them ready to admit your son as soon as he agrees to enter a treatment program.

3. Consider Who Will Attend

An alcohol intervention isn’t a breezy open house where people mix, mingle and enjoy hors d’oeuvres. There is only one intention for this event: to enact serious, lasting change. To ensure maximum success, only invite people who are actively involved in your son’s life and genuinely concerned about his well-being.

Ensure all your invitees are OK with the idea of speaking up and providing concrete examples of how the addict’s behavior has affected them. You should also ask to review all your participants’ prepared remarks to make sure they’ll be speaking from a position of empathy and love, instead of trying to blame or shame your son into getting help.

4. Understand Addiction Is a Disease

It can be heartbreaking to see your son return to alcohol abuse again and again, despite multiple heartfelt promises to quit. However, it’s crucial to realize that nobody starts drinking with a goal of ruining their relationships and their health. Alcohol relapses happen because of the way addictive substances affect brain chemistry. Over time, it becomes nearly impossible for people who are caught in the trap of substance abuse to quit drinking on their own, no matter how much ambition or willpower they have. That’s why it’s essential to approach your alcohol intervention with compassion.

Young Adult-Specific Addiction Programming

At Spearhead Lodge, we work exclusively with young men who need help to reclaim their lives from the vicious cycle of substance abuse. If your son has agreed to seek qualified addiction treatment after an alcohol intervention, time is of the essence. Contact us today to learn more about our curriculum.