As you’re looking through directories and websites of various drug rehab facilities on behalf of your loved one, you might see one that offers an intervention service.
You might think, “Great! They offer the full spectrum of treatment, plus they can help get my son/daughter/spouse, etc. into the program in the first place.”
But, hold on a second. You need to stop and evaluate whether requesting an intervention from the desired treatment center is really the best choice.
In some cases, the interventionists whom treatment centers send to your house will do an exemplary job. However, there are many pitfalls to be wary of when a treatment center tries to handle the intervention process itself, which we will explain here.
When Addiction Treatment Centers and Programs Offer Interventions for ‘Free’ | Is it Really Worth it?
When a treatment center’s interventionist comes to your house, he or she comes with an agenda…and it’s not really even a hidden agenda. It’s built into the arrangement.
The agenda? To get your loved one admitted into that specific treatment center, no holds barred.
This interventionist may not care about fixing codependency and enabling issues within the family, and the addict may not even be truly ready to enter rehab in the first place. The interventionist whom the treatment center sends may be part of their everyday team, or it may be a contracted specialist. Nonetheless, the goal is still the same: Get your loved one into the treatment facility you called, as soon as possible. Any other result is a failure on their part.
Once you call a treatment center and request an intervention from them, you limit your options. It would be like going to a dealership and asking for a salesperson to help you find the right vehicle for all of your needs, even if it’s located at another dealer.
The salesperson is only going to focus on getting you to buy a vehicle on that specific lot, even if there might be a better one for you elsewhere with more safety features, the right color, lower mileage, better price, etc. You painted yourself into a corner as soon as you walked in to that dealership.
Is the Interventionist Certified?
When the treatment center sends this individual to your house, are they an “interventionist,” or are they a certified interventionist? Yes, you can achieve professional certification to do this job, but sadly, not all of the people running around doing interventions are actually certified by a legitimate institution.
This “interventionist” they send may just be a regular member of their staff who was suddenly tasked one day with performing interventions for the treatment center. The individual may know their stuff about counseling and treating people who are already in rehab, but have they been fully trained in running the intervention, fixing family issues and moving forward with the family’s best interests in mind?
Even if the treatment center sends a contracted specialist, there’s no guarantee that this individual will be certified in interventions, either. They may have been doing interventions “for years,” but if they haven’t taken the time to get their certification, you have a right to be skeptical. It might even be a personal friend of the rehab owner, for all you know.
When you’re looking for a professional interventionist, you’re going to want to check for the two following qualifications:
- If they have a CIP (Certified Intervention Professional) title, as granted by the Pennsylvania Certification Board, and/or if they are a member of the Association of Intervention Specialists
- If they have at least a bachelor’s degree (preferably a master’s) in a field of study such as Psychology, Social Work, or Substance Abuse or Mental Health Counseling
Is This Intervention Simply an Add-On to the Program?
Interventions aren’t typically covered by insurance. If you call an addiction treatment and they offer to “add on” the intervention for free in order to get you to commit to the program, this should raise a red flag in your mind.
For starters, they are only offering the intervention for free because they are moving around the budget of what they will receive once they have secured you or your loved one as an admission. But, you can’t go into rehab looking to get the best deal. Sure, you want to stay within a reasonable budget, but there are no Groupons for entering a rehab program. If you’re going in with that mindset, you’re likely doomed from the start.
Furthermore, if the treatment center is offering the intervention for free, what kind of value do you think you’re going to get out of it? Doesn’t that signify that it’s basically an afterthought in their mind?
And finally, you have to wonder what kind of interventionist you’re going to get if they add on the service for free. You’re likely going to run into one of the same traps with an unqualified (or underqualified) interventionist that we mentioned a moment ago.
Do They Take a Family-Centered Approach to the Intervention?
In all of our years in doing interventions, we’ve realized that their purpose is to foster family healing as much as they are to help the addict heal and recover. Family members need to take on new, more positive roles during the loved one’s recovery. Enabling and codependency behaviors need to be addressed, and relationships need to be repaired.
The best interventionists will spend at least a day with the family before ever meeting the addict. The interventionist will show the family how to set healthy boundaries with the loved one, and how to play new, specific roles during the intervention itself and during the ensuing recovery process. The interventionist also might need to spend some time educating the family about the nature of addiction, because many family members turn a blind eye to it or have been fed bad information.
In short, a legitimate intervention needs to be about the family as much as, or more than, it is about the addict. If you’re in the middle of an intervention and the interventionist lets it get to the point where family members are pointing fingers at, airing grievances and guilt-tripping the addict or each other, then you’ll know that something is wrong.
Do You Ever See the Interventionist After the Intervention?
If you’ve done an intervention before and you never saw or heard from your interventionist afterward, that’s a problem. If they disappear into the night after the intervention, what does that say about their investment in your loved one’s long-term recovery?
The best interventionists will help map out your loved one’s entire path to recovery, including the treatment that needs to be provided. These interventionists will also check up on family members along the way and provide ongoing family counseling. Family members are likely to fall back to their old ways without checking in periodically with the interventionist, and this sets the stage for relapse once the loved one graduates rehab and returns home.
Better yet, the best interventionists will help you find a treatment center that best suits your loved one’s needs, taking into account factors such as location, whether mental health treatment needs to be included, the length of the program, the types of treatment methods used, etc. If the interventionist is already beholden to a specific treatment center, does their loyalty lie with your family or the facility that sent them?
Our Loyalty Lies with You
At Intervention Helpline, our loyalty lies with your family and your struggling loved one. We want nothing more than to see your loved one achieve sobriety and for your family situation to improve.
We are free agents, not beholden to any specific treatment center. This gives us the freedom to help us choose a treatment program that’s truly best for your loved one.
Our interventionists are CIPs who take a family-centered approach to each intervention. Our team also provides case-management and ongoing family counseling services beyond the intervention. Contact us to see how an authentic, comprehensive intervention process should go.