3 Tips for a Cocaine Addiction Intervention that isn’t Horrible : If you and your family are struggling with a difficult cocaine addict, you’re most likely feeling very frustrated right now, and uncertain about what steps you can take to get things back to normal. Arguments, denial, screaming, leaving the room… these things can make you feel like it’s downright impossible to have a conversation about the problem at hand. Cocaine addiction is notoriously hard to deal with which is why interventions with cocaine users can easily go awry.
As a group of experienced addiction and mental health intervention specialists, we totally get that feeling. Cocaine addiction is not an easy problem to solve which is why so many concerned families reach out to us for tips on what to do in this exact situation.
With those families in mind, we’re going to take some time to discuss, in detail, the unique challenges of a cocaine addiction, and 3 useful intervention strategies that families can use to break through to the addict in your life. Let’s get started.
The Challenges of a Cocaine Addiction
Despite its glamorous reputation as an elite party drug, cocaine is seriously dangerous and it’s making a comeback. Since 2012, cocaine use (including crack cocaine) has been on the rise, and it’s now the second leading cause of overdose death in the US, surpassed only by the opioid epidemic. However, it’s important to note that for black Americans, cocaine is actually the #1 cause of overdose, surpassing the rate of opioid or heroin overdoses in this population.
In addition to the risk of overdose death, cocaine is dangerous because:
- It is financially draining
- It can permanently and visibly damage the nose and face
- Even just short term misuse can cause psychosis and personality changes
- Long term use causes organ damage, malnutrition, elevated risk for heart attack/stroke, and more
- It can cause people to behave more erratically, violently, and recklessly than they normally would
For these reasons, it’s very important to address the cocaine habit in the family, no matter how much the user downplays the risks. Cocaine users will often claim that it’s harmless since they only use it occasionally, or that they are completely in control. However, any level of cocaine use comes with great risk for harm, and severe addiction down the line so you should not let it go.
Cocaine Addiction Intervention Tips
Cocaine, especially in the form of crack, is a highly addictive stimulant (AKA upper), which means it makes people feel way more excited, confident, and awake than they normally would. Those who are addicted to cocaine therefore, may be too jittery or wired to focus on a conversation with you, or overconfident to the point that they cannot listen to reason. Additionally, people with a cocaine addiction may respond to your intervention attempts with violent outbursts, or severe mood swings. For that reason, our first tip is:
Prepare Ahead of Time
Don’t wait until you’re at your wit’s end to start a cocaine intervention.
If you randomly decide to talk about the problem when you’re already in a highly emotional state, your loved one is probably going to respond badly. Since you’re here reading this article, you’re likely already well aware that there is a problem, and that it needs to be dealt with ASAP. Therefore, instead of hoping for the issue to resolve on its own, use this time to prepare a well-organized, thoughtful intervention that includes all of the addict’s closest friends and family members.
Take a few days to gather your circle of change, and have everyone prepare a thoughtful statement ahead of time. Set a time and place and kindly invite the addict to join instead of attacking them out of the blue.
Interventions can easily transition into wild arguments if we’re not careful. Addiction is a very emotional subject matter that most likely involves issues with lying, stealing, betrayal, or worse… So it’s really quite understandable that people may get upset and angry. So, in anticipation of conflict, you should set rules for all of the intervention participants. We recommend the following:
- No yelling, shouting, or screaming.
- No insults and no destructive or mean-hearted criticisms.
- Show patience and respect for all members of the circle
- Conduct the meeting with calmness and love
- Stay close to your loved one- they should not leave the room or building without someone to accompany them. Bathroom trips are ok, but maybe ask to have the door left cracked.
- Put devices away
Reach for Help
If you’re still feeling intimidated by the idea of holding a cocaine addiction intervention, it’s a good idea to reach out for some professional advice and support.
Check out intervention websites, and reach out to knowledgeable an experienced addiction expert that can help you deal with the drug problem in the family. Interventionists will assist you in those situations where you’re just not sure what to do next, and support your family during the meeting (intervention) so it goes as smoothly as possible. They can also help you map out the best treatment plan for your loved one and provide support throughout recovery.
Interventions do not have to be horrible, explosive, or violent. With a little love, organization, wisdom, and understanding, they can be incredibly healing experiences for everyone involved.
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3 Tips for a Cocaine Addiction Intervention that isn’t Horrible