What if You Need to Intervene?

What do we mean by intervene?  If you’ve educated yourself about the signs of drug abuse, learned about the different drugs of abuse, and you suspect that your child may be experimenting with drugs, it is time to talk to them. This is what we mean by intervene.

You can intervene either informally or formally. 

An informal intervention is when you talk to your child about your observations and concerns.
A formal intervention is when you bring others with you to talk to your child about how his/her drug use has affected everyone.  The formal intervention is usually used after informal interventions have failed.

The main purpose of an intervention is to ask your child to address the problem and get them the help they need.  The sooner an intervention takes place, the better the chances are of preventing serious problems from developing.  Don’t wait until something serious happens to address your concerns.

Do not initiate an intervention when your child is high or when you are angry or too emotional.  You need to be able to stay calm and speak rationally.

Be prepared before you have this conversation.

  • Make sure you set time aside to have the conversation.
  • Plan what you want to say beforehand.
  • Speak about your concerns.
  • Talk about how this behavior is affecting you.
  • Cite incidents of concern resulting from substance abuse.
  • Be prepared for defensiveness, denial, and resentment.
  • Be supportive and helpful about change.
  • Have some specific ideas about how to assist with making these changes (i.e. parent, family and friend support, counseling, treatment).

You are not alone in your fight to keep your family and loved ones safe. There are many resources available to you to provide you the information, advice, and help you may need should you identify drug abuse to be happening in your home.

More detailed information on intervention can be found on the following sites.