Here are six suggestions on how to convince a person dealing with substance abuse to get help.
- Family intervention. Family members and an interventionist get together with the addict to tell them how they love them and wish that they would get help. Each family member takes a turn and tells the person how special they are and that they need to get help. The person who is struggling listens and perhaps becomes convinced to enter treatment.
- Discuss consequences. An addictions expert can have a one-on-one talk with the addict. The expert should warn the addict of the dire consequences if they do not change their ways. The expert should be vivid as possible and hold nothing back. The goal is to convince the person to get help.
- Have someone who’s been there talk to the addict. People who have themselves experienced addiction can try to reason with the addict.
- Ask the addict why he or she won’t get help. Ask the addict to list three reasons why he or she will not get help. At first, he or she will say all kinds of things, but continue to engage the person and get the three main reasons why he or she refuses to get help. It might take a couple of tries, but listen to what he or she says. Once you get the answers, write them down.
- Determine solutions to barriers. Once you get those three reasons, ask a professional to find the solutions to those issues. For example, the person says that he or she will not get help because he or she has failed repeatedly and fears failing again. Ask a few addiction professionals to help the addict overcome this barrier.Use your list from no. 3 and list every positive thing that will counter those barriers. When you are finished, present this to the person who is struggling and explain what you came up with. This will help reduce the person’s fears and anxieties and may convince them to get help. Developing a plan to counter their reasons for not getting help will go a long way.
- Talk to, not at, the addict. Nobody wants to be lectured. Be honest with the addict and tell him or her that it will require some hard work but that he or she can get better. He or she will suffer without getting help.The person who is struggling is scared and they need help in overcoming their fears and resistance to getting help. Remember to find out those fears, address possible solutions to those fears, and you will have a better chance of getting through to that person.