An Adolescent Intervention is different from that of an intervention performed on someone who is a legal adult for several different reasons. Although a minor technically can be mandated to a treatment facility, an intervention is ideally not to be an ultimatum.
The biggest part of an adolescent intervention is seeking the willingness of the adolescent. Forcing someone into treatment usually decreases the effectiveness of the treatment.
“Perhaps it’s just a phase. Do we Really Need an Adolescent Intervention?”
An intervention on an adolescent is often difficult because they are usually at an early stage of their addiction. Intervening on a teenager for drugs or alcohol can be a confusing place for any parent to be.
For a teen, the initial stage is one of “seeking pleasure” and, as such, the substance abuse is probably still quite fun for them. The negative consequences, although possibly present, aren’t enough for the adolescent to consider changing their habits.
He or she is usually living at home rent free, without a job or need for one, with all the amenities magically provided for them.
If the adolescent spends or steals all of his money that week, the lights are still on and the house payment is still paid.
For this reason, an intervention on a teen or adolescent cannot be one where the primary focus is on their immediate “negative consequences” because that concept isn’t real for them. In other words, there really aren’t any negative aspects to their addictions, and there are a great many positives in their mind.
An adolescent intervention or teen intervention often cannot be fully implemented to the point of removing them from the home. Legal issues complicate the situation, as one cannot simply “ask the 13-year-old to leave the premises” to experience the consequences of their lifestyle choice.
Even if it were legal, it would seldom be advisable to expel the child from the home in such a way.
An Intervention is a New Opportunity for Your Teen
Finally, an adolescent intervention can often be an opportunity for a rebellious teen, who is trying to manifest his independence, to demonstrate that he “doesn’t have to listen to anyone”. In other words, an intervention may become a power struggle, with the teen holding most of the emotional cards.
Why An Outside Interventionist Is Necessary
When conducting an adolescent intervention, one of the priorities with the interventionist is to establish a connection with the teen that might be impossible for any particular family member. The interventionists we employ are often recovering addicts and alcoholics themselves and have usually been in the exact same situation as the adolescent who is abusing drugs or alcohol.
Having been where the teen has been often opens the door and allows the adolescent to reflect upon his life, his conduct and his decisions in a way that was previously impossible.
Need to know more about why our interventionists are right for your adolescent? See our About page.