February 22, 2018

What is an intervention?

What is an intervention?

Dragonfly Interventions

What is an intervention?

An intervention is a deliberate process by which change is introduced into peoples’ thoughts, feelings and behaviours. The overall objective of an intervention is to confront a person in a non-threatening way and allow them to see their self-destructive behavior, and how it affects themselves, family and friends. It usually involves several people who have prepared themselves to talk to a person who has been engaging in some sort of self-destructive behaviour. In a clear and respectful way, they inform the person of factual information regarding his or her behaviour and how it may have affected them. The immediate objective of an intervention is for the self-destructive person to listen and to eventually accept help.

An intervention can be a helpful tool for a family member, colleague or friend who is resistant to addressing his or her problem. At one time there was an attitude that people couldn’t be helped unless they “hit bottom” but that has changed a lot over the years. Often people who are resistant and enter treatment due to an intervention do very well. Anyone who calls Twin Rivers to request an intervention will be encouraged to talk to a counsellor first, as sometimes a professional intervention is not necessary. However, there are times when an intervention is critical and Twin Rivers can provide you with options from a list of professionals with whom we have worked.

Intervention Models

The Johnson Model is what most people think of when they hear the word “intervention.” This model is confrontational. The addict is called to a meeting at which time his friends and family confront him about his behavior and how his addiction is causing harm to himself and others. The participants are to offer their full support to the addict should he agree to go through treatment. However, there is also a threat made of what will happen if the addict refuses treatment. The strategy here is to pull the addict out of his self-denial and see directly what his addiction is doing to his loved ones. An interventionist oversees the process.

The Invitational Model is fairly straightforward and lacks the element of surprise the Johnson Model imposes. The family and friends of the addict schedule a workshop or meeting with an interventionist. One person invites the addict to the workshop, providing full knowledge of what will occur at the meeting. It’s left up to the addict to decide to come or not. However, the meeting always occurs regardless of whether or not the addict agrees to go.

The Field Model is a combination of the Johnson Model and the Invitational Model. It’s designed to be easily adaptable to the situation. So if the addict has the potential to be violent or the intervention must be put together hastily, this model is useful in mitigating negative responses. Its name is derived from the notion that it is applied “in the field” and allows the therapist to make decisions based on the given circumstances.

Read more >> Dragonfly Interventions Introduction