Interventions have become an important tool for families to address substance abuse inside the household. A family member who uses drugs or alcohol often doesn’t realize how much pain and devastation they cause to others, as they are in the midst of suffering greatly themselves. Because of this, many families say nothing because they’re afraid to embarrass a family member who has a substance abuse disorder. They don’t want to rock the boat or cause more grief. However, if you want to potentially save the life of your family member, there’s a time when that intervention letter must be sealed and delivered. What are 5 things you can put in the letter to make sure it reaches to the heart of your loved one’s sensibilities?
First things first: an intervention is an act of love. It’s not done to shame or embarrass the person who suffers from addiction. It’s meant to make them aware of the pain they’re causing, both to themselves and to other people. The letter is meant to reach their heart and let them know, “This is causing pain. Let’s fix it. We’re in this together.” Substance abuse often makes the sufferer feel like they’re all alone. They don’t feel like another soul could understand them, but through your intervention letter, you can let them know, “We’re here.”
What are 5 Things to Include in an Intervention Letter
- Always begin with love. Explain the good things they have done for you and why you love them
- Review the words or actions that led you to write the letter. Let them know what parts of their behavior or words have caused you to begin this heart to heart
- Explain how you’ve dealt with their addiction or what parts of your life have been afflicted because of the addiction
- Suggest a concrete course of action that you’d like to see them take to get help (for example, enter rehab or outpatient counseling)
- Just like you began with love, end with love as well. Let them know you will always love them, support them when they get help, and be there for them
Writing the Letter
Sitting down to write an intervention letter will be one of the most emotional things you’ve ever done. Someone you love very much has fallen into the tragedy of substance abuse, and it’s hard to acknowledge that, even to ourselves sometimes. Family members who suffer from substance abuse problems often become almost unrecognizable to us, even if they’re people we’ve known our entire lives who played a big part in where we are today. It’s natural to feel some anxiety and loss for words at first.
Perhaps one of the most important things to remember before writing the letter is that honesty is critical here. Search your heart for the truth; strive to write words that are authentic and that your loved one will recognize as you, a person they also love and care about. While they may not immediately respond to the letter, they will take those words in their heart and mull them over as their substance abuse continues.
A Letter is a Lifeline
By acknowledging an ongoing substance abuse disorder in an intervention letter, you are opening the door for changes. You’re recognizing that the problem exists, and your loved one will realize that you do indeed notice what’s going on, even if you haven’t said anything about it until that letter. Sometimes it’s a great relief for them to know that you recognize their problem. Finally, they don’t have to hide anymore and can get honest with themselves and you, too. Honesty is often the first step toward getting help.
Writing an intervention letter is tricky for most people, and it’s heartbreaking for others. You’re not alone before you sit down to write that letter. Thousands or even millions of people before you have written an intervention letter. It touches every part of the human condition and the emotion that springs from carrying about someone other than ourselves. Remember going into it, though, that thousands or even millions of those letters were answered with a full recovery later on. That’s the hope you must cling to as you write the letter and then wait for the reaction.
If you’d like to learn more about intervention letters and the good they can do, please call now at 833-762-3739. Our team can help you get started.