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Intervention Steps

1. Planning. Have a meeting with everyone concerned except the substance abuser for purposes of thoroughly evaluating the situation and planning for concrete steps for everyone to take. For example, you may identify certain things that the loved one is doing that are harmful to himself or herself. Plan for direct intervention as a group.

2. Consult a professional. Prior to the intervention, get the advice of a therapist or counselor for proper guidance.

3. Rehearse the intervention. With the presence of the professional therapist or counselor, rehearse the intervention.

4. List of intolerable activities. Make a list of activities which the substance abuser should avoid.

5. List of losses. Give to the substance abuser a list of every possible loss resulting from his drug addiction or alcoholism.

6. Follow through. Never hesitate to follow through and do not state consequences that you are not willing to enforce.

7. Treatments. Make plans and arrangements for any necessary treatment as may be recommended by the professional therapist or counselor.

8. Confront the substance abuser. In a group meeting attended by everyone concerned, confront the substance abuser in a calm manner, explaining to him or her the objective of the intervention.

9. Acceptance of the problem. Ask the substance abuser to accept that there is a problem. If he or she denies, everyone in the group must help in convincing him or her that a problem indeed exists.

10. Ultimate goal. Explain to the substance abuser that the intervention is for his or her own good and it is important to stop him or her from hurting himself or herself. Show your love but be firm and tough.

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