The Complete Guide To Hiring A Professional Interventionist

A professional interventionist is an individual whose job is to help families and loved ones struggling with alcohol and/or mental health issues get the help they need in a compassionate, caring manner.

What Does An Interventionist Do?

An interventionist will employ a strategy based on his or her preferred intervention style. Common things you can expect an interventionist to help with include:

  • Help determine a strategy for success
  • Build a team
  • Educate the team on their roles & responsibilities
  • Find additional resources if needed before or after the intervention, this could include a treatment facility
  • Plan the intervention
  • Guide all parties through a difficult conversation
  • Follow up conversations

Intervention techniques vary based on the individual as well as the interventionists own training, experience and preferred methodology. You can read more about Dr. Stanger’s invitational approach here.

Building A Team

An interventionist will create a team of family members, friends, and loved ones who are part of an identified individual’s life. These people will become part of the recovery team. Since there is no one-size-fits-all approach, each recovery team might look different as the needs of the individual are addressed.

Educating The Team

Once the team is created, an interventionist will educate team members about addiction and recovery. Each member of the team can become stronger and healthier too, by learning more about the recovery process and how to create and establish appropriate boundaries in their own lives.

Setting Up The Intervention

Finally, the interventionist helps establish a meeting time and place for the intervention itself. During this process, the interventionist guides the meeting to keep the focus on productive and peaceful solutions toward recovery.

When Do You Need An Interventionist?

Denial is a powerful force for those struggling with addiction and mental health disorders. It’s often a common problem for family members watching the struggle play out.

It’s painful to watch someone you love decline in health, and it’s impossible to find solutions to the problem when it’s not acknowledged.

Dual diagnosis (personality disorders and addiction co-occurring) can also compound the situation.

Most families turn to help when frustrated or at a loss for the steps to take next in helping their loved ones make a change in behavior.

You shouldn’t feel reluctant to seek an interventionist for guidance. Interventionists offer training, knowledge and experience to help both families and those struggling with addiction or mental health disorders find healing. If the warning signs are there, it’s important to ask for help.

Questions To Ask Before Hiring An Interventionist

Hiring an interventionist may be the right step, yet still feel like an overwhelming step to take. When you are ready to choose someone, ask the right questions to be sure you connect with the right person for your situation.

Here are some questions to ask (or points to consider) when researching and interviewing:

What are your credentials?
CIP stands for Certified Intervention Professional. This is key, as are any other counseling degrees or certifications that might be beneficial for the needs of the targeted individual. You can even follow up with “What is your experience with my loved one’s challenge?”

What is your experience in this field?
Ask about past experience and more recent experiences since things change so fast in today’s world.

What is your personal experience with a loved one’s addiction or behavioral health?
This will give you insight into the interventionists own connection to addiction and recovery. Many find this path through their own healing and recovery, which becomes an asset for helping others through the process.

What is your process?
In other words, what approach will this person use for designing the intervention? It’s important to understand his or her methodology and the steps that lead up to the meeting.

Do you work with a team?
Does this person work alone or does he or she engage other highly trained individuals such as social workers, psychologists, etc to help?

Do you have any affiliation with specific treatment centers?
Most interventionists will have recommendations for treatment centers that they trust and place confidence in from past experiences.

What is your ethical code?
Asking this will provide insight into what guides the choices the interventionist makes as they organize and provide care for clients.

Do you have any geographic restrictions?
Before becoming too attached, find out if this person can meet your geographic needs for an intervention. 

Cost of Hiring An Interventionist

It’s important to understand that costs inevitably vary by case.

While this out of pocket expense may cause you to pause initially, is there really a value that can be placed on getting a loved one back to health? Untreated addiction leads to significant costs such as attorney fees, medical bills, and lost wages (to name a few).

The real question becomes: What is the cost of not finding a solution?

Is Someone You Love Suffering From Addiction?

Amazing things happen when we open ourselves up to change.