Photo of board member Dave Jansa

Ask a coach

Dave is a long-term survivor of the chronic disease of addiction. He's also one of the creators of our loved one coaching program, including its curriculum, training and execution.

Dave now serves on our Board of Directors.

Q: Should I stage an intervention for my loved one?

A: As with most situations, this decision needs to be made on a case-by-case basis. What's right for one family may not be right for another.

At Face It TOGETHER, we work directly with loved ones to help them navigate challenges related to addiction. Coaches equip loved ones with a toolbox to move forward toward wellness. Interventions are one of the tools in that box.

Most people are familiar with the Johnson Model intervention, as it's used in reality television shows. It's a fairly confrontational method that centers around a meeting and demands for treatment. But it's not the only form of mediation involving loved ones and their persons at risk for addiction.

Al-Anon meetings are also considered a form of intervention, although they are designed as a coping strategy and discourage attempts to change behaviors in others. Al-Anon has proved helpful for some, but the message of powerlessness leaves many feeling frustrated and unfulfilled.

A thorough discussion of what intervention is – and what it isn't – is often very enlightening for our coaching members. Many don’t realize they are currently involved in a self-guided, but ineffective, version of this strategy.

A Google search for an intervention won’t list Face It TOGETHER or even peer coaching as possible resources. However, there’s no doubt the service we provide is a form of intervention. In fact, it’s a very effective form.

Our approach is a longer and more strategic process. It combines proven behavioral science, compassion, addiction education, connection to resources and more.

But our secret sauce is the powerful connection we provide with a peer – a coach who has a similar lived experience as the member they’re serving. This connection often provides immeasurable value. Our goal is to fundamentally change what we have the power to change: ourselves and the way we interact with our person at risk. 

We help members create a new reality based in compassion and supported by scientific principles. Unlike more confrontational interventions, loved one coaching doesn’t force or coerce change.

Of course, there are circumstances in which a long-term coach relationship isn’t in the best interests of our members and/or the person in their lives who’s at risk. Sometimes a situation is so precarious that immediate and decisive action needs to be taken. In such circumstances, a Johnson Model intervention or local involuntary committal process may be necessary.

Face It TOGETHER provides a free consultation for all who seek help. If you’re struggling to understand your role in assisting someone with addiction, consider having a conversation with a trained peer coach.

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