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Getting Your Loved One Into Treatment

Often the Hardest Step is Getting Them to Agree to Get Help

Individuals who are actively addicted will rarely decide to get help on their own (it does happen, but not often). Typically addicts need encouragement by family, an employer or the legal system to begin the journey of recovery.  We have a variety of services designed to help your loved one be successful, but often the hardest step is getting them to agree to get help. If you need more ideas visit our intervention page

This page is designed to give you some ideas about how you can help your loved one begin to access the services that will help him or her succeed.

Comprehensive Addiction Treatment and Recovery Services Across Minnesota

Since 1983, Minnesota Adult & Teen Challenge has been restoring hope to people struggling with drug, alcohol, and other life-controlling addictions by addressing their physical, emotional, and spiritual needs. We offer a full range of services, including:

  • Outpatient Treatment – In-person or Telehealth
  • Licensed Residential Treatment – 7-90 days
  • Long-term Residential Recovery – Faith-Based 12-15 months
  • Co-occurring Mental Health – part of all programs based on need
  • Transitional Housing and Aftercare programs for graduates

These offerings allow us to effectively serve individuals with a broad spectrum of addiction issues; from those seeking treatment for the first time to those who have been struggling with addiction for many years.

Choosing the Best Option

While you may feel your loved one needs residential treatment (and you are probably correct), you may have difficulty convincing them to start at that level of care. Also, sometimes insurance won’t pay for residential care unless there is a documented clinical need for it.  A very helpful first step is to convince your loved one to have a “Chemical Health Assessment”.  The assessor would interview the client with input from family about their substance use and ultimately determine the following:

  • Does the individual meet criteria for a substance use problem?
  • If so how significant is the problem? (mild, moderate or severe)
  • What level of care would be recommended?
  • What are the insurance options for treatment payment?

Importance of Being Ready for Help

Once the treatment recommendation is made, it’s up to the individual to agree to it. We can’t force people into treatment or force them to stay. Sometimes someone will refuse to go to residential care, but will agree to go to outpatient. In this case there should be an understanding by the individual and family that if they fail in outpatient, they will agree to inpatient. A contract can be signed to agree to these terms. The contract is not legally binding; it is just a way to create some accountability.

If a person is unwilling to come to the Chemical Health Assessment you have a couple of other options. One is an intervention. We have resources for you to stage your own or you can hire an interventionist. Interventions can work, but they are expensive and not covered by insurance.

Another option is to consider what if any leverage you have with your loved one and use that leverage to either get them to go to treatment or the assessment. Examples of leverage might be ending certain financial arrangements you have with them or limiting contact with grandkids until they get help.

Sometimes you have leverage and often times you don’t. What’s always important is that whenever you address your concerns with your loved one you are doing it in a kind and caring way. Addiction often can create anger and hostility in family relationships, and if we express our concerns while angry it can have the opposite of the desired effect.